Lunch at Tortuga Tavern

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Several months back, Tortuga Tavern had a menu overhaul, as well as some changes made to the interior. The toppings bar has been removed, and now there is a smaller station for condiments and plasticware.

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The previous menu offered Taco Salad, Beef Nachos, and a Caesar Salad. The former kids menu offered quesadillas, but this has been removed to add Mac & Cheese and a kid-sized Rice Bowl. While WDW website has updated the menu to reflect the current offerings (though the mac and cheese is described as two Flour Tortillas filled with Melted Cheese…), the primary page needs to be updated as the restaurant description still references nachos, taco salad, Caesar salad, and quesadillas.

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tortuga-tavern-seatingThe new condiment station offers packets of the “cayenne pepper sauce” they offered before

Josh over at Easy WDW tried one of the new Rice Bowls in May, and the Beef Rice Bowl sounded like a solid choice. He notes that his came with a pouch of sour cream, but I did not receive one (which is fine – I wouldn’t have used it since Matt wasn’t with me).

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The bowl consists of Cilantro Rice, Black Beans, Shredded Seasoned beef, and topped with Pico de Gallo and a Lime Wedge. Though the bowl is on the shallow side in appearance, it’s deceiving and can pack a lot of heft.

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The beef itself was nicely seasoned and very tender, though a bit on the salty side. However, when eaten in conjunction with the other components in the dish, it was greatly mellowed. The pico added a nice bright, freshness to the dish.

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Both the rice and black beans were well prepared as well.

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Here’s a look at the height of the bowl compared to a large fountain drink. Note that I received a large by default when I simply ordered an unsweet iced tea. If you want the smaller size, be sure to note that when ordering (though in this heat right now, you’ll probably want the large!).

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At $11.49, the Rice Bowls are a pricier option for quick service, but I think the value is there. I couldn’t finish the dish even though it was my first meal of the day and I was hungry. A hearty appetite would find this filling, and I think those looking for a lighter meal would be happy splitting this. With limited selections outside of burgers, hot dogs, and chicken nuggets when it comes to quick service in the Magic Kingdom, this is a nice option that I would happily revisit.

Have you tried any of the Rice Bowls at Tortuga Tavern? What did you think?

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