I have a BRAND NEW Disney World restaurant review for you guys today, and I love this place so much that I'm frankly surprised I've never posted about it before...but then again it's on the pricey side, and with four brothers tagging along, princess meals don't happen on every trip for me. ;)
Have you guessed what I'm talking about? Tucked away in a castle in Epcot's Norway Pavilion, this is AKERSHUS! 💖😄
AHkershus or AYkershus, however you chose to say it, this restaurant ticks all the boxes for me: beautiful surroundings, amazing food...
...and of course all my princess besties!
Just look at this grand hall! I will tell you upfront: for me, Akershus totally trumps Cinderella's Royal Table. We ate at CRT during the Halloween Party a few months ago (our first return in over a decade), and while dining in Cinderella Castle was of course lovely, the price was too much, the food was not that good, and even our interactions with the princesses weren't quite up to par. Akershus on the other hand has always left me feeling impressed.
These Norwegians know how to throw a banquet!
Let's first take a look at the different dining rooms! When you check in at Akershus, you'll be welcomed (usually) by Belle in a little alcove, then shown to your table. Off to the left of the grand hall is this room at the front of the castle (those windows front along the
Maelstrom Frozen Ever After line); there are also some tables near the appetizer buffet line.
I have to admit my favorite tables are off to the right of the grand hall. I love the cool cream stone and the mottled windows - if you can get in the small round turret room, that's the best, but anywhere by a window is lovely. We were in this room at one of the tables in the middle which wasn't quite as restful...
...but then again when things quieted down in between seatings there was room to dance!
Here's a more action-packed pic: princesses EVERYWHERE!
Akershus, as many Disney table service restaurants do, seats in rotations: they try to get everybody to their tables at roughly the same time, send the characters on the rounds, have the Princess Proceshun (oh don't worry we'll get to that), give people time to eat and clear out, then start the whole process over again with a new restaurant-full of guests. We were seated on the later side of our rotation, but the princesses hadn't quite arrived yet so we had time to visit the BUFFET.
Yes, before you get your delicious main entree and plate full of desserts there is row upon row of exotic tasty Scandinavian dishes to try!
If you are a non-adventurous pass-the-potatoes kind-of eater (as many of my brothers are), this buffet will probably not be your favorite. But I love the "Taste of Norway" because it truly feels so European, and there are so many interesting and different things to try...
There's something about perfectly portioned, perfectly round pebbles of butter that makes me feel like I'm on vacation. LOL. The buffet tells you the Norwegian words for everything, so butter is smør. There's also zinfandel vinaigrette for the salad!
There were SO many different kinds of salads: apple and pear, seafood, chicken, cucumber, potato...there were also interesting meats and cheeses and rolls (you could practically make yourself a meal off this buffet alone).
I'm not a huge fan of seafood, but I somehow hugely enjoy the capers and herring and smoked salmon at Akershus - we're in Norway, of course we need five kinds of cold fish on the buffet!
My plate of deliciousness! It's very important not to get too full, because the main course is still coming, and also you want to look elegant and not be stuffing your face when the royalty arrives.
Cinderella complemented me on my fairy dressmakers. Those Anthropologie pixies do a great job. ;)
We swapped travel tips with Mulan - she's been on a few treks as a warrior!
The quality of a character experience at a Disney restaurant is very much luck of the draw, but that day the princesses were all very sweet, taking as many photos as we wanted, chatting not just with me but with everybody in the party.
ALL the selfies. 👍
You may also have your meal interrupted for the Princess Proceshun, a wonderful expreshun of loooovvveee. I didn't make that up, that's seriously how the lyrics of the song go. The princesses parade around with mini princesses in tow. Long ago, when Dart was a tiny little three or four year old, we incredibly talked him into doing the princess procession. He changed his mind almost as soon as Snow White led him away and glared at us as he made the circuit, following the graciously smiling princesses with their baskets of flowers. It was pretty much hilarious.
He was not to be cajoled into joining the parade this time but preferred to stay at the table enjoying his beef sandwich with roasted shallot mayonnaise, and yes, that is a BRICK of macaroni and cheese sitting on that plate. EPIC.
I got the potato and goal cheese ravioli in fennel cream which was flavorful and wonderful.
One good thing about having a big family is there are plenty of plates to steal bites from when you eat out. ;) We like to trade so that everyone gets to try everything - and everything I tasted from Akershus was amazing! Above are the traditional k
I think the beef sandwich might have won for all-around amazingness though!
Last but certainly not least, we come to the desserts. They bring out the first round in a plate of three like that for the whole table to share, but DON'T WORRY - you can ask for more of whatever you want. Our waitress was so sweet and pretty much kept the desserts coming! 😂 It's seriously so hard to pick a favorite...I absolutely love the rice cream, but then there's the chocolate mousse, and then again there's a crispy apple tart...all so good!
We lingered so long over our desserts that the restaurant had pretty much cleared out - it was fun to take our time enjoying the last bite of rice cream and grab some photos before heading back out into Epcot.
To see more, don't forget to watch the vlog! Also don't forget to leave your Akershus thoughts down in the comments. :)