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I spent $80 at Tony's Town Square in Disney World, and even as a New Jerseyan I was impressed by the Italian eatery

Carly Caramanna   

I spent $80 at Tony's Town Square in Disney World, and even as a New Jerseyan I was impressed by the Italian eatery
I went to Tony's Town Square Restaurant in Magic Kingdom.Carly Caramanna
  • I'm a theme-park journalist who's been visiting Disney World regularly for over three decades.
  • I went to Tony's Town Square Restaurant in Magic Kingdom to try the updated menu, released in 2022.

I visited Magic Kingdom on a whim and made a last-minute reservation at Tony's Town Square Restaurant.

I visited Magic Kingdom on a whim and made a last-minute reservation at Tony
Tony's Town Square Restaurant is located near the entrance to Magic Kingdom.      Carly Caramanna

On a recent stay at Disney's Polynesian Village Resort, I decided to spend an afternoon at Magic Kingdom with no set plans.

Since I didn't have any advanced reservations, I used the walk-up feature in the My Disney Experience app to see if there were any last-minute table-service slots available.

I was able to snag one at Tony's Town Square Restaurant with a wait of only 10 minutes.

Tony's is themed after "Lady and the Tramp."

Tony
Tony's serves Italian fare in a "Lady and the Tramp"-inspired setting.      Carly Caramanna

Tony's is the fictional restaurant from "Lady and the Tramp" where the leading dogs shared their first kiss over a plate of spaghetti.

The park restaurant is located just past the entrance of Magic Kingdom on Main Street USA.

The decor was charming.

The decor was charming.
There were stained-glass windows and photos from the Disney movie.      Carly Caramanna

The restaurant embraces a turn-of-the-century charm and is very bright and airy. There's white everywhere and plenty of light shining in.

Art across the walls elegantly depicts colorful scenes and characters from "Lady and the Tramp."

Tony's hasn't always been beloved by Disney fans, but it recently changed its menu.

Tony
Tony's got a new menu in the spring of 2022.      Carly Caramanna

I had avoided Tony's for years because I'd heard its food is kind of mediocre. I'm from New Jersey and my husband is from New York, so we have high expectations when it comes to Italian food.

But I was looking forward to giving it a chance since the restaurant made menu updates in May 2022.

It largely features classic Americanized Italian-inspired foods like spaghetti and meatballs, fettuccine Alfredo, and chicken Parmigiana.

But it also added new dishes like a tomato salad with burrata, orecchiette with spicy Italian sausage, butcher's steak, and oven-roasted shrimp scampi.

There were also tweaks and additions to the dessert menu.

We opted to sit on the patio.

We opted to sit on the patio.
There's some outdoor seating available at Tony's.      Carly Caramanna

It was a particularly breezy day, and we opted to sit on the restaurant's wraparound patio located behind gorgeous French doors.

Since Florida can be brutally hot, we were the only ones out there.

There are only a handful of tables on the patio, so it's a quieter environment than the bustling dining room.

Our table provided us with an awesome view of the parade and other characters.

Our table provided us with an awesome view of the parade and other characters.
We saw Winnie the Pooh and Tigger at the train station.      Carly Caramanna

The people watching was excellent on the patio.

We had perfect views of Main Street USA, including the frequent character cavalcades that passed by. The patio turned out to be one of the best spots to catch these mini parades — if you time your meal correctly.

The patio also offered views of the train station, where characters frequently appeared. We were able to spot Winnie the Pooh and Tigger during our meal.

We started our meal with a bottle of wine.

We started our meal with a bottle of wine.
I ordered a bottle of Chianti wine.      Carly Caramanna

You can only enjoy alcoholic beverages at Magic Kingdom's table-service restaurants, and even those options are usually limited.

But Tony's offered a pretty decent wine list.

We opted for a bottle of the Banfi Chianti Superiore, a Sangiovese blend from Tuscany. We paid $45, which we thought was a great deal since glasses of wine in the parks can be expensive. The bottle is now listed on the menu for $49 after price increases.

The wine was crisp, delicious, and perfect for outdoor sipping.

Next, we tried a new appetizer.

Next, we tried a new appetizer.
We ordered the garlic-bread appetizer.      Carly Caramanna

The main reason I was excited to visit was to sample a new garlic-bread appetizer.

Priced at $11.00, the shareable plate is described as toasted ciabatta with roasted-garlic butter and Parmesan fonduta. The bread was served stacked and the sauce was in a container on the side.

The ciabatta on its own was wonderful and bursting with flavor from the garlic butter. But I was looking forward to combining it with the fonduta.

We poured the fonduta on top of the bread.

We poured the fonduta on top of the bread.
The cheese sauce was made with Parmesan.      Carly Caramanna

It seemed that the easiest way to combine the ingredients was to pour a gentle coating of the fonduta over the top of the stack of bread.

The combination of flavors was wonderful.

It was buttery, rich, and garlicky, and the creamy texture of the sauce worked perfectly with the crunchy ciabatta.

As we were enjoying the bread, we got a viewing of the flag ceremony.

As we were enjoying the bread, we got a viewing of the flag ceremony.
There's a flag ceremony every day around 5 p.m.      Carly Caramanna

As we were enjoying the scenery, wine, and bread, I was pleased to discover that our visit timed perfectly with the daily flag-retreat ceremony. The decades-old tradition proved to be one of the highlights of our meal.

During the ceremony, park employees gather to salute a Disney-selected veteran or active-duty military member from among the park's daily visitors. It was heartwarming to witness this Disney tradition up close.

It ended up being one of the most relaxing afternoons I've ever had at Magic Kingdom.

It ended up being one of the most relaxing afternoons I
I loved the ambiance of being right on Main Street USA.      Carly Caramanna

Our server was attentive and friendly and allowed us to enjoy a relaxing afternoon in the picturesque setting without any rush. I made sure to give them a big tip.

The appetizer was one of the best dishes I've ever tried in Magic Kingdom — it alone is worth a visit to Tony's. It also felt so special to sip wine on Main Street USA and be able to spot so many characters and special entertainment.

With tax and tip, our total came to $80. You could likely get more food for that price elsewhere, but it was worth it for the atmosphere and experience alone.

I'd gladly return and order the same thing or try some of the other new menu items.

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