Contemporary Resort

4600 N. World Drive
Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830
1-407-824-1000

One of the original and still one of the most popular resorts at Disney. Not only does the monorail run straight through the building, it's just a short 10 minute walk over to the Magic Kingdom. Monorail access is located on the 4th floor and stops at the TTC, Polynesian, Grand Floridian and Magic Kingdom.

There are several different places here to grab a cocktail, ranging from the casual pool bar to the upscale California Grill. At the marina you'll find Sammy Duvall's Watersports Centre where you can rent a boat, go parasailing and more.

You can also find select liquor, beer and wine at the main gift shop. You are paying for convenience here, so don't expect reasonable prices.
Updated 7/12 

Saturday
May142011

California Grill

©DisneyOpening on September 9, 2013. 

Read more about what they plan on changing here.


The updated & refreshed menu for California Grill is now available. Reservations are being accepted for any upcoming dates. We'll be in soon to check out the lounge area and drink menu.

Located on the top floor but you check-in on the 2nd floor.
(Generally without a reservation here you're out of luck, but occasionally you'll be able to walk-up and get a seat at the bar to enjoy some appetizers or sushi with a cocktail. And put on your fancy pants - this place is upscale!)

Read about their upcoming new beverage line-up when the restaurant re-opens. Lots more wine, beer and cocktails!

Saturday
May142011

Outer Rim Bar

Located on the 4th floor near the Monorail entrance/exit. A good spot to grab a cocktail or beer while waiting for your table at Chef Mickey's. Yes, pretty much everyone sitting in the bar area is simply waiting for their reservation. If you want to hang out at this bar, it's best to get here at 4pm when they open and get out before the dinner rush begins. The assorted seating up against giant windows provide a beautiful panoramic view of Bay Lake and beyond. 

Click here for Disney Resort's Cocktail, Beer & Wine Menu


Pour Quality

Just OK

Food

None, but you're right across from a counter service market with sandwiches, snacks and make your own ice cream sundaes (seriously - make it as big as you can)!

Atmosphere

Kinda odd. Like we mentioned, most people sitting here are families waiting for their table, so it's not the most adult, seculded, or romantic place to share a glass of wine and conversation. It's worth coming up to grab a beer just to check out the view - and do it twice - daytime and nighttime are both amazing scenes. They've also got a TV at the bar as well. There are only a few seats at the bar, but there are plenty of comfortable chairs and tables scattered throughout the lounge area. Plus, every few minutes you get to see the monorail run through the resort - that's always a cool view.

But...

Did you hear that? Seriously, what is that incessant humming?! It's enough to drive us to drink! No, we haven't had one too many as you may think, there is a strange, ominous humming constantly pulsing in the background that makes it just uncomfortable enough that we can't stay here for longer than one round. What's the culprit? The air doors for the monorail. 
 

Saturday
May142011

Sand Bar Pool Bar

You'll find this tiny full-service pool bar behind the resort between the walkway to the marina and the pool. On one side is a walk-up window to order food & sodas, but on the other side facing the pool you'll find a door to enter this tiny, closet-sized bar. It may be small, but with the tv, air-conditioning and a couple seats at the bar, it makes for a nice break from the hot Florida sun.

Hours
Pool hours vary daily, but usually open around noon and close 8-9pm.

Click here for Disney's Pool Bar Drink Menu

Pour Quality
Average

Food
Limited menu of sandwiches, salads, chips and fruits.

Atmosphere
It's a little bar with a few seats and a tv. Like we said, a nice break from frying out in the sun by the pool. The wall behind the seats is all glass, so it provides a decent view of the pool.
 

Saturday
May142011

The Wave

Located just off the main lobby. This trendy hot-spot serves up unique American-style organic, sustainable and local selections, which even includes their beer and wine options.

Click here for Disney Resort's Cocktail, Beer & Wine Menu

Featured Specialty Cocktails
*The Wavesicle - $9.50
4 Orange vodka, Cointreau and non-fat yogurt with a splash of orange juice.

*Under the Florida Moon - $9.50
4 Orange vodka, St. Germain liqueur, Agave nectar and orange juice topped with Blue Moon.

Agave Nectar Margarita - $9.75
Tierras Organic Blanco tequila, Agave nectar and freshly squeezed lime juice.

Raspberry Rain - $9.50
Rain Organics Red Grape Hibiscus vodka, Chambord, fresh raspberries, lychee and freshly squeezed lemon juice topped with soda water.

Antioxidant Cocktail - $9.50
Absolut Berri Acai vodka, Stirring's Pomegranate liqueur, lychee and fresly squeezed lemon juice.

Breakfast Cocktails
*Bay Lake Sunrise - $8.50
4 Orange vodka, Midori melon liqueur and sweet & sour with a splash of Sprite.

Pomegranate Splash - $8.50
SKYY Citrus vodka, Stirrings Pomegranate liqueur, cranberry juice and soda water.

*Unique to The Wave

Draft Beer
Orange Blossom Pilsner - $6
Orlando Brewing Certified Organic Ales:
Blonde Ale - $7.25  |  Brown Ale - $7.25  |  Pale Ale - $7.25

Organic Beer Flight - $7.75
Three samplings, 5oz. each

Wine
A selection of red, white, sparkling and dessert wines available by glass and bottle. The Wave only serves screw-top wines - read why below.

Wine Flights
- from $15 to $17
Choose from Crispy Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir Discovery, Chardonnay Discovery and Australian Shiraz

Pour Quality
Average

Food
View their Breakfast Menu, Lunch Menu and Dinner Menu.

Atmosphere
A hip, trendy vibe that could easily fit into any downtown district, but with a welcoming atmosphere that invites you to stay for awhile. Just past the host stand you'll spot the large bar with several wood chairs surrounding it. Unique blue neon lighting bounces eerily off of the dark furniture to create the ambiance of the deep blue sea. This dark atmosphere provides the perfect environment for a quiet conversation with friends. A couple of big screens mounted discreetly will ensure no one misses the big game during their deep sea excursion.
 
 

Review
The Organic Beer Flight ($7.75) consists of 3 Orlando Brewing beers. Orlando Brewing is a microbrewery located right here in the industrial section of downtown Orlando. Orlando Brewing specializes in 100% certified organic beer and their beer is noted for a dominant hoppy flavor.
The flight included three 5oz. samples of their Blonde, Pale and Brown ales. The glasses are presented in a metal tray that has a description of the ale under each the glass. 
 
Flavors range from a citrusy hoppy bite in Orlando Brewing's Blonde to a knock your socks off hoppy kick in the teeth from their Brown Ale. Longtime readers know that overly hoppy beers just aren't our thing. If you enjoy a hoppy brew, these are right up your alley. With that said, the Blonde ale has a very dry bite and a slight cut of crispness from the citrus flavors. Using the term "favorite" loosely, the Pale Ale is our "favorite" out of the bunch. While it still makes Sierra Nevada IPA look like they forgot to add the hops, Orlando Brewing's Pale Ale has a nice caramel and citrus note that blend well with this hoppy brew. The Brown Ale is the hoppiest and most strongly flavored of the offerings. If you feel like you've never found the beer that had enough gusto for you, this darker rendition of an IPA is the one for you.

In all fairness, these three beers just aren't our style. If you're looking for a local beer while you're in Orlando you can still stick with an organic beer from Orlando Brewing. Their Red Ale is downright tasty. Unfortunately it's not available here. If you're interested in venturing out to downtown Orlando on your vacation, Orlando Brewing does a free brewery tour Mon-Sat at 6pm and they also have a large bar with several of their fresh beers on tap. Another local option that is available at The Wave is Orange Blossom Pilsner, abbreviated as OBP. With a touch of local orange blossom honey, this sweet golden lager goes down smooth.

Here's the descriptions that are underneath each glass:
Blonde Ale - "This local favorite is a light-bodied blonde ale with subtle malt sweetness and a crsip, dry finish."
Pale Ale - "An all-American-style amber gold pale ale that blends caramel malt flavor and zesty citrus-toned Cascade hops for the perfect balance."
Brown Ale - "Hop sharpness dominates the malty richness. The malt flavor plays a supporting role with some toasty and caramel malt character."


Review of The Wave's Specialty Cocktails
When we saw that The Wave has their own specialty cocktails, we knew we had to try both right away. The Wavesicle, made up of vodka, Cointreau and orange juice mixed with yogurt, is like an adult version of the Orangesicles you had as a kid. Smooth, creamy with a strong orange flavor. If they only sold these out of the ice cream trucks! Maybe not the best value for your money, but this is a very delicious, almost dessert-like drink.

Their other specialty, Under the Florida Moon, is made up of orange vodka, St. Germain liqueur, agave nectar and orange juice and topped off with a little Blue Moon beer. We found this one the most intriguing on the menu, but unfortunately it didn't quite hold up once we tried it. This is basically an orange martini with a flat, lightly hoppy aftertaste thanks to the beer. A better value here, since it's basically all liquor. It's a fine drink if you're in the mood for a simple, orange flavored martini.


Free Sampler for Contemporary Guests!
If you are a guest of the Contemporary Resort, The Wave does a free sampler of these three beers on Saturdays from 3-4. Check your information card in your room to verify the time and the phone number to call ahead. They don't take reservations, but they would like you to call so they get an estimate on the number of attendees. For the free samples, don't expect the same amount of beer that we received - it will be considerably less. The event is presented by one of The Wave's bartenders that knows a lot about beer. They'll talk about how the beer is brewed, history of beer, etc. - kind of "beer school" like. Sounds like a great free perk for the guests of the resort!

About the Restaurant's Initiative
Wine 'With a Twist,' Innovative Spirits Menu 
The wine program, with only screw cap wines, is cutting-edge and supports sustainable agriculture, says Master Sommelier John Blazon, manager of wine sales and standards for Walt Disney World Resort. 

"The surge in the use of the screw cap is nothing short of a revolution in wine packaging," says Blazon. Industry experts say that the screw cap is the most significant technical evolution in the wine industry since the glass bottle was introduced 250 years ago.

And the options for screw cap wine are growing, said Blazon. The Wave serves no California wines (California Grill on the resort's 15th floor has a corner on the California market), but instead focuses on bright-style New World wines from the Southern Hemisphere, including Argentina, Chile, New Zealand, Australia and South Africa. Sparkling wines from Tasmania, Rieslings from South Australia, floral New Wave whites from Argentina and pinot noirs from New Zealand are among the interesting choices, with 50 available by the glass. A flight of 3-ounce samplings and dessert wines, ports and sherries round out the wine list.

For beer fans, certified organic ales from Orlando Brewing are on the menu. Produced in Orlando, these handcrafted ales use only American-grown certified-organic barley malt.

Source: ©Disney