When looking at places to eat for our Disney Global Tour, I gravitated toward restaurants that were unique in some way. I was interested in food and/or theming that we wouldn’t be able to find in any of the other parks. In the case of Hollywood Studios, the Sci-Fi Dine-In Theater fit the bill.
As with virtually all of the other table service restaurants in Walt Disney World, reservations are highly recommended. They’re super easy to make using the My Disney Experience website or app. Because we were staying on property, we were able to book all of our reservations 180 days in advance of the first day of our vacation. Guests who are not staying on property can book up to 180 days in advance of the desired reservation date.
It’s themed to look like an old-fashioned drive-in movie theatre. The booths are made to look like cars, and each car has three rows of two people. The whole place is dark, and much like a real movie theatre, people are totally focused on the big screen at the front.
They don’t play any full-length features here. It’s just a variety of previews for old school sci-fi movies. Most of them are pretty cheesy, and I found them very entertaining to watch.
The one difficulty I had with the theming was that it was dark. It was a little hard to see the menu, even though they had little lights on the table. I don’t think I would really want to change anything about that – the nighttime ambiance is part of the fun – but it’s worth noting.
Okay, so I lied. I actually had one other problem with the place. It was so dark and nicely air conditioned that I got very sleepy. It was only day 3 of our trip, and I was already dragging!
AJ and I shared some chipotle BBQ chicken tenders as an appetizer. They were excellent. They had a bit of a kick without being too spicy, and they were perfectly crispy on the outside.
For the main course, I had the vegan lettuce wraps with tofu, noodles, spicy cucumbers, and carrots. I knew I was taking a gamble when I saw the word “Szechuan” used to describe the sauce, but I just really wanted some vegetables. They ended up being too spicy for me. If you like spicy food, they would be awesome.
AJ had the BBQ burger with French fries and a pineapple toasted coconut milkshake, which I think was a seasonal special. He said the burger was pretty standard, but the milkshake was top-notch. He couldn’t finish all the fries. Too much milkshake!
Prices were actually pretty reasonable. The entrees were mostly in the $15-20 range, although there are a few more expensive items. It’s not that different in price from a quick-service restaurant, plus you’re getting the fun theming. That makes it a good value in my book.
I actually don’t have too much to say about the service. Our server was prompt and efficient and more or less left us alone to watch the movie previews. I think that was a good thing. In a place like that, what more could you ask?
It must be hard to work in a such a dark space all day. I hope they get to take breaks to go outside for a little Florida sunshine.
Overall, I think this was one of the highlights of our day. I’d eat there again the next time I visit Hollywood Studios!