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We are headed to DL for our first visit in June and I've been reviewing the menus with horror.
Our 11yo son is on the spectrum which means he isn't thrilled w/ change and has a good bit of sensory issues. This translates to a limited amount of foods that he is willing to eat..and he will rarely try something new. In the greater scheme of things, it is a lot...but not when it comes to restaurants. We are okay with breakfasts because he loves pancakes and waffles, but lunches and dinners are more challenging.
Basically he eats:
pasta - preferably with butter but will do marinara if necessary
pizza - plain cheese
quesadillas - plain cheese with salsa to dip
grilled cheese - not a favorite, but will eat if pressed
veggies - plain, with butter - broccoli, cauliflower, peas, corn, carrots
fruit - bananas, apples, pineapple, cantaloupe, strawberries
yogurt - again, picky about brand and can't have lumps, etc
PB&J - but must have grape jelly
So this translates to the kids menu, sometimes...but he needs larger portions than that. Would I have a problem getting him a plate of plain pasta at most TS restaurants? ...even if it isn't on the menu?
You will note there are no burgers, chicken nuggets, or hot dogs on that list...he really doesn't like the consistency of meat (but will eat homemade chicken fingers at home with some complaining). This rules out most counter service options unless they have pasta or pizza. I can get around counter service...we can get food from multiple places if necessary...but the TS options are more challenging.
Thoughts? I know WDW and how to navigate the TS choices there for him...but DL is an unknown. We have until June to figure this out.
I'd be shocked if you couldn't plain pasta if pasta is on the menu. The problem there I can see is if your son will only eat certain shapes or possibly if the only pasta dish on the menu is lasagne. If pasta isn't on the menu the restaurant more than likely wont have any that they could cook for your son. Whether they'd be able and willing to get some quickly from a restaurant "next door" or "across the street" there's no way to know and I expect that's more likely to happen in a restaurant bar if the bar only serves a scaled down version of the restaurant's menu.
I would suggest getting on the phone with a CM to check in to specific places, but these preferences seem like something DL can definitely work with. Enjoy your trip, and consider sharing your planning with us!
I know if yo have dietary issues, you can have that noted on the ADR, andmention it again to your server when you're seated .... and a chef will come out to handle that guest's order specifically. I've read reports hre, of chefs creating entirely new dishes based on someone's specific allergies/etc.
So, one way or another I should think they would EASILY be able accommodate your son's tastes. It's not like anything he'd want is hard to acquire and prepare - buttered pasta, buttered broccoli, etc? Easy, peasy for the kitchen to handle.
Honestly the QS food is great so we do less TS in DLR. For TS, Carnation Café in DL has a build your own PBJ. If you are looking to do the World of Color package Wine Country Trattoria is a good choice. I'm sure the can do plain pasta. Goofy's Kitchen is a lot of fun and Plaza is a nice second for buffets. They will have something for him for sure! Goofy's has a huge variety.
You should be fine! He should be able to order adult portions from the kids menu with no problem.
Good QS choices are Boardwalk Pizza & Pasta at California Adventure is next to Paradise Garden Grill so you can get pasta or Pizza for son and something with more flair for you. Both are delicious. I am sure the Mexican Grill in Pacific Warf could make a plain quesadilla. In Disneyland Jolly Holliday has a great grilled cheese sandwich (normally comes with tomato soup).
The only thing you may have trouble with is yogurt. I can't remember the brand they carry but it will be the same brand throughout the resort.
We sometimes travel with a young man who has the same tastes to your son and Disney always has something for him!