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Universal Studios Orlando’s New Theme Park Features Island-Inspired Cuisine

Universal Studios Orlando will be making a splash in a couple of months when they introduce their brand new theme park, Volcano Bay, into the Universal Orlando Resort on May 25th. This water theme park will be tremendous, and so will all of the awesome food that’s going to keep park goers full and happy.

The food is all inspired by dishes and flavors from the South Pacific, and encompasses over 60 menu items across four different dining locations: Kohola Reef Restaurant & Social Club, Whakwaiwai Eats, Bambu, and Feasting Frog. Here’s some of the most exciting food you can find at each of those locations.

Kohola Reef Restaurant & Social Club

One of the most exciting items exclusive to this restaurant is a Mango BBQ Pulled Pork Sandwich. Based on Hawaiian flavors, it’s served with caramelized pineapple and fresh mango slaw inside of a King’s Hawaiian Roll.

Other awesome food you can only find in Kohola Reef includes sushi hand rolls like the iconic California roll and a Guava Tapioca Pudding.

Whakwaiwai Eats

Whakwaiwai will be featuring an exclusive Island BBQ Chicken Pizza, which utilizes mango barbeque sauce, red onions, diced chicken, and Gouda on a fresh sheet of pizza dough. A Hawaiian pizza will also be available at both Whakwaiwai and Kohola Reef.

Whakwaiwai will also have a vegan Tropical Baby Greens garden salad and an Island Chicken Salad with a creamy coconut dressing on deck.


Bambu’s headliner is the Quinoa Edamame burger, which is also available at Kohola Reef. This veggie sandwich is topped with shiitake mushrooms and sriracha mayo and served with fries and mango slaw.

Bambu will also have the Island Chicken salad from Whakwaiwai available for purchase.

Feasting Frog

The Feasting Frog will feature a Taco Sampler of three different signature tacos, including a steak and a shrimp taco. Plantain chips and salsa will accompany this trio of tasty tacos.

Guests will also be able to find an exclusive Ahi Tuna Poke Poke Bowl at the Frog. The poke is tossed in a honey soy vinaigrette and served with plantain chips.


All images courtesy of Universal Orlando. 
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The Ultimate Guide To Eating Well At Universal Studios Orlando

Whenever I think about the food one would find at an amusement or theme park, my mind gravitates towards stale pretzels, nachos with fake cheese, artificially colored cotton candy, and a lack of alcohol. I’m happy to report that the food situation at Universal Studios is as far from my preconceptions as possible.

While Universal has some pretty solid food options within the park, the real star of the culinary show is CityWalk, the strip of restaurants and entertainment that lies right outside the park entrance. I’m not exaggerating when I say you could literally live happily for months without leaving the area, especially if your hotel is on property. CityWalk is home to a handful of upscale restaurants, a movie theater, more bars than your liver would know what to do with, and even QSRs, for when you’ve had your fill of the good stuff and are just really feelin’ Qdoba.

Because there are a mind-boggling amount of ways to feed yourself at Universal Orlando, here’s where you should be eating, and what to order once you get there.

The Cowfish

Whats Shakin’ Tuna Bacon Sandwich
This thing is a monster. Inside two spring roll wrapper buns filled with sushi rice and kani, a type of crab commonly used in sushi, you’ll find applewood bacon, blackened yellowfin tuna, jalapenos, tomato salsa, iceberg lettuce, slaw, and spicy mayo. Once you figure out how to fit this thing in your mouth, you’ll be happy you ordered it.

Jen’s Fresh Find Roll
The Cowfish is known for both sushi and burgers. It kind of seems like a strange combination for a restaurant, but they really do excel at both. While there are nearly twenty rolls on the menu, I had a clear favorite. The Jen’s Fresh Find Roll is filled with cucumber, tuna, and green onion and then topped with avocado and salmon. Not to mention, the whole thing is served with a side of poke. This just goes above and beyond.

The Three Broomsticks

Fire Whisky
Okay, so this isn’t food, but it’s important to know that The Three Broomsticks sells Fire Whisky. Universal gets this made by a local distillery and The Three Broomsticks is the only place in the world you can find it. This whiskey is super potent. It’s kind of like Fireball on crack. I tried to take a shot of this and nearly died, so sip slowly.


Chocolate Banana Gooey Cake
Mythos was rated the #1 best theme park restaurant six years in a row. That’s a pretty big feat considering the amount of places you can find high quality food at Universal alone. Their savory items are pretty great, but this chocolate banana gooey cake steals the show. This dessert comes with a molten chocolate lava cake, banana chip, fresh bananas, homemade caramel sauce, and a perfect scoop of ice cream on top. If you get one dessert at Universal, it should be this one.

NBC Grill & Brew

Grand Slam Burger
NBC Grill & Brew is any sports lover’s paradise. There are a ridiculous amount of TVs in the place, and they even have a big screen on the exterior of the building where they show notable events like the World Cup and the Olympics. They mostly serve sports bar-type food, but on crack. The Grand Slam Burger has two patties topped with cheddar cheese, butter bibb lettuce, applewood smoked bacon, tomato, BBQ ranch, and crispy tabasco onions on a brioche bun. They also have a pretzel that’s literally bigger than any normal human’s face, so you should get one of those for the table (or yourself) as well.

Strong Water Tavern

Rum Flight
Strong Water Tavern, located in the the Loews Sapphire Resort, is any rum-lover’s dream. They have two pages of their menu dedicated to an impressive rum inventory that is divided into multiple categories: Spanish Island, British Island, Spiced & Flavored Rum, French Island, Mainland, and the good ‘ol USA. The best part is they sell rum flights, where you can choose three types of rum from any category to sample.

Arroz con Pollo
The food at Strong Water Tavern is just as impressive as their rum collection, if not more so. Their menu is inspired by several cuisines of the Caribbean, including Jamaican, Cuban, Puerto Rican, and more. Strong Water’s secret weapon, in my opinion, is the Arroz con Pollo, made with bone-in chicken, garlic, peppers, onions, and tomatoes cooked into yellow rice. I basically gorged myself with this stuff and have absolutely no regrets.

Tchoup Chop

Lobster Seafood Toast
Tchoup Chop is yet another testament to the caliber of food found at Universal, as the restaurant is owned by Emeril Lagasse. The lobster seafood toast with citrus aioli is an item on the appetizer portion of the menu, and it would be a crime to travel all the way to Tchoup Chop without eating it.

Anuenue Chirashi
While this chirashi bowl is a tad out of character in comparison to the other items on the menu at Tchoup Chop, it was so incredible that you just gotta go for it. In this dish, you’ll find sushi rice, salmon, ahi, cucumbers, kamikana, spring onions, avocado, unagi glaze, and spicy mayo. It’s kind of like a deconstructed sushi roll, but the key to the deliciousness of this dish was the super fresh fish.

Toothsome Chocolate Emporium

Pork Belly Sliders
Toothsome is Universal’s newest restaurant on CityWalk, having opened just a few months ago. They specialize in sweets, as the name would suggest, but their savory menu is immense and incredible. One of my favorites was the pork belly sliders, because they garnish each mini burger with a piece of chocolate dipped bacon. If you’re wondering, this is literally the way to my heart.

Toothsome has clearly hopped on the extravagant milkshake trend. I would say majority of their dessert menu is comprised of crazy milkshakes, some of the more impressive flavors being Red Velvet, Strawberry Cheesecake, Chocolate Banana Brain Freeze, and Key Lime Pie. Even though a lot of places are serving milkshakes like this, Toothsome sets themselves apart by using unique flavors of ice cream, like sour cream, and excessive garnishes like an entire red velvet cupcake, slice of key lime pie, or chocolate covered banana.

The moral of the story when it comes to the food at Universal Studios Orlando, is that there is something for anyone and everyone. You can go an entire stay without needing to eat at the same restaurant twice, and you can definitely go an entire stay without hitting all the places Universal has to offer. When you do book your trip, feel free to experience all the park has to offer on a culinary scale, but make sure to hit up our favorite restaurants here, or live your life full of regret.

Photos: Analiese Trimber


Simpsons Theme Park Opens Duff Brewery, Lard Lad Donuts and Bumblebee Man Taco Truck


Universal Orlando’s Simpsons theme park is now home to a Duff Brewery beer garden, Lard Lad Donuts and Bumblebee Man taco truck. According to Inside the Magic, Duff Gardens is an open-air bar serving “Lite,” “Dry” and regular Duff beer, along with the Flaming Moe from Moe’s Tavern and Squishees from the Kwik-E-Mart. The garden also features the Seven Duffs mascots (Tipsy, Queasy, Edgy, Surly, Sleazy, Remorseful and Dizzy) greeting guests by the entrance and hints at a cheeky parody to the Disney/Busch Gardens.


Bumblebee Man’s Tacos offers the standard fare of chicken, fish and carne asada tacos, along with the unexpected addition of “Asian Inspired” Korean beef tacos. For those with a sweet tooth hankering, Lard Lad brings a “variety of freshly prepared [debatable] fried treats,” including sprinkle-laden “The Big Pink” and “Brain Freezin’ D’oh-nut Sundaes.”


The new joints join Krusty Burger, Moe’s Tavern, Kwik-E-Mart and more iconic Simpsons-themed establishments brought to life.

Check out the video below for a quick tour of the park’s latest additions.

H/T + PicThx Inside the Magic


Moe’s Tavern Now Open, Serving Duff Beer & More


After announcing plans to open a Simpson Theme Park just over a week ago, Universal Orlando has officially declared Fast Food Boulevard open to the public.

At the moment, Moe’s Tavern, Krusty Burger, the Frying Dutchman, Lisa’s Teahouse of Horror, Luigi’s Pizza and Cletus’ Chicken Shack are open for business, serving up iconic dishes seen on The Simpsons. Most notably, Duff Beer.

Unfortunately, with the exception of Moe’s Tavern, the eateries are not separate establishments and instead are grouped together under one food court. Although Krusty Burger appears to be a restaurant in itself, it’s actually just a seating area open to all guests dining at any of the quick service counters. Still, the fact that they’re serving Clogburgers from Krusty Burger and Double-Battered Chicken from Cletus’ Chicken Shack has us pretty giddy.


At Moe’s Tavern, the Duff Beer is rightfully alcoholic and available as Lite or Dry , with a taste similar to Budweiser. As a special treat, Flaming Moe’s are also on the menu and while it’s sadly neither boozy nor on fire, the park does it’s best by serving it as orange soda served on dry ice for a smoky effect.

Oh, Florida, why you so far?

Head over here for more deets and photos.

H/T + PicThx Inside the Magic


Tour the Simpsons Theme Park Under Construction [WATCH]


Last week we got word that Universal Orlando will be expanding the area around The Simpsons Ride and building  a real-life Springfield theme park. As construction on this much-anticipated addition continues, a video recently captured a sneak peak of what we can expect.

Krusty Burger, Moe’s Tavern and Cletus’ Chicken Shack seem to be near completion, along with the sign for Android’s Dungeon & Baseball Card Shop. For the most part, the buildings are faithful replicas of the show’s originals. Stay tuned for more info on the actual  food and beverages — here’s to hoping the Duff Beer lives up to Homer Simpson’s exquisite standards.

H/T YouTube


Simpsons Theme Park Will Feature Krusty Burger & Serve Duff Beer


Let me sum up this article in five words: There will be Duff Beer.

Other than that, yes, Universal Orlando will be building a real-life Springfield — the hometown of America’s most endearing animated family (Full House? Get outta here). The new outdoor attraction will include the actual restaurants, stores, characters and food featured in The Simpsons.

Visitors will be able to feast upon a “Krusty-certified” meat sandwich at Krusty Burger, pizza at Luigi’s Pizza, donuts at Lard Lad, fish at the Frying Dutchman, a “Taco Fresho” with Bumblebee Man and Duff Beer at Moe’s Tavern.

“This will be a must-see experience for Simpsons fans all over the world,” raved Mark Woodbury, President of Universal Creative, in a press release. “For the first time ever, they’re going to be able to enter a world that they’ve only seen on television – and we’re really excited to bring that world to life.”

I’m not gonna front, I’m way more excited for this than I was for Harry Potter’s Diagon Alley. Mostly because I felt cheated when I found out the Butterbeer was a cream soda sham.

H/T + PicThx Eater