In all my trips to the USA I can count all the bad dining experiences I have had on one hand. Once we were ignored in Margaritaville, once at Tick Tock in NYC the server went on about tips so much it ruined my experience, once at Rainforest café our server binned the wrong gift card so we lost our money , once we ate at D-Luxe Burger and now Frontera Cocina.
Since getting home from Orlando in May I have been very unsure if I should share my experience of Frontera Cocina. At the time I shared in a few Disney groups on Facebook in anger but haven’t really mentioned it again. In the interests of fairness I have decided to share – if I didn’t all my blog would be is positive experiences, which isn’t a true reflection of life.
Our evening began with myself and my husband lazing about our room at Saratoga Springs. We had no dinner plans and our bellies were rumbling. I popped on to the My Disney Experience app to look up what was available for tonight. There were lots of options but we settled on an 8.30pm reservation of Frontera Cocina – a newish Mexican restaurant at Disney Springs.
This placed looked so nice from the outside. I really liked how the hostess are outside – makes the restaurant feel really approachable. Unfortunately our issues started right here. It was 8.15pm – just fifteen minutes before our ADR. Tried to check in with the hostess, only to be told we don’t have a reservation. Explained it had only just been booked and was advised that they only really refresh the Disney ADRs every 24 hours so we would not be on the list. Not to worry they would make us a new reservation.
We are then told we have to go away and come back. The restaurant is empty but we have to go away because we cant be seated for 15 mins. If this had been a restaurant at home I would have just left and found somewhere else to eat. We sat on a bench literally no more than 15 feet from the door and waited out our 15mins.
Not having anywhere to wait is a huge negative for this restaurant, not everyone can arrive at exactly their adr time.
We were lead to a seat right in the back of the restaurant – next to a door to the outside patio. This got annoying very quickly but we should have asked to be moved and were planning on asking. Our server took so long to come and take our drinks order that I had decided just to deal with it. The inside of the restaurant is really beautiful and our table was really cute looking. It has a very romantic cosy feel.
Our server took 15 mins to take our drinks order and another 10 to come and take our food order. Again I should have left the restaurant at this point as I was getting increasingly frustrated with this place.
Orders are finally taken and we wait for our food. And we wait. And we wait. Remember the restaurant is practically empty. We flag down our server and eventually our food arrives.
My husband ordered – Grilled chicken, poblano rajas, black beans refritos with queso fresco, guacamole, chipotle salsa,served with corn tortillas. For some reason it arrived with mashed potato instead of tortillas and our server took it back straight away.
I ordered Red Chile Chicken Enchiladas and luckily it arrived just as ordered. Eventually my husbands order comes back with all the correct accompaniments. We take a picture for our review and instantly notice its cold. Another attempt at flagging down our server and we send it back.
It arrives again, this time delivered by the manager. He intimidatingly stands over us and watches while we test the heat with our fingers. Guess what, its cold!
The manager is standing right there so we ask him, how can this be cold? His answer – ITS NOT COOKED FRESH! Yep that’s right, the cook all the chicken in advance and then heat it up on the grill when you put in an order. THEY DO NOT COOK IT FRESH!
If you are not aware eating reheated chicken can be really dangerous. It must be served piping hot otherwise you can end up with food poisoning. Reheating chicken also changes the protein in the chicken which can give you an upset stomach even if it is served piping hot. As I said the risk can be greatly reduced if the chicken is piping hot – the hotter the chicken the lower the risk. Frontera Cocina failed to reheat the chicken to an acceptable temperature twice. Twice they were willing to risk my husband getting food poisoning.
Personally I don’t think its unreasonable to expect my chicken cooked fresh. I am paying over $20 for my entrée, it should be cooked fresh. I also don’t think it is unreasonable to expect a restaurant to be doing everything in its power to mitigate the risks of any of its patrons getting food poisoning.
The manager then tried to get Jamie to have a steak instead – because those are cooked fresh! What a Joke!
He declined the managers offer and we left. It was now nearly 10pm – we had been in there just short of 1hr 30mins and we still hadn’t had our dinner.
Luckily Blaze Pizza saved the day. Make sure you read our review of blaze below. Its from a previous vacation but it was still just as good!