Sunday Brunch '
Family Dinner Night in the Nineteen
July 24, 2011
One warm summer's
evening, I found myself seated at a
turquoise Formica countertop table,
having just finished a delicious meat
loaf platter and looking at pictures of
Cousin Hassan's two children in their
Cousin Hassan coaches pee-wee soccer on
the weekends and couldn't wait to tell
us about it after the dinner he so
graciously served. He
even let us watch The Adventures of
Spin and Marty while we ate.
I couldn't wait to text my
friends about my fun evening at Cousin
Hassan's, but I had to wait to get my
cell phone back. At
the start of our meal, I was texting my
roommate what time I would be home, but
I got caught by Hassan.
He took my phone away because
dinner time is family time.
You'd think my cousin
was a martinet when it came to family
meals, but such a traditional
all-American family dinner is
commonplace at the 50's Prime Time Caf'
in Disney's Hollywood Studios!
The restaurant opened in 1989 and
has been serving family dinners and
entertaining guests regularly ever since
then. The caf' is
housed inside a 1950's home designed
with strong lines, sharp angles, and
long rectangular windows, reminiscent of
the modernist homes like the Kaufmann
House in Palm Springs, CA designed by
famous architect Richard Neutra.
Once inside, you feel as though
you stepped into a bygone era,
celebrating the artistic, retro feel of
a country freshly rebuilt in a time of
progress and innovation after the war.
Daring and bold shapes, colors, and
patterns of the caf's bar area break
tradition after the more conservative
styles of the first half of the 20th
While waiting for your table, you know
it's 1955. Walt
Disney is on television, introducing
Disneyland to homes across the nation!
From the reservation desk, you get a
glimpse of the kitchen dining area that
is to come!
If you are not yet in
the 1950's mood, you soon will be once
you are seated in the dining room and
your server comes by to make you feel
like you're at Mrs. Cunningham's kitchen
table. Those of us
with hats were ordered to take them off
and those who refused were punished'
Brent, nicknamed Scooter, was ordered to
set the table. Cousin
Brian and Princess Kayleigh thought it
was a hoot!
The menu was loaded with
traditional dishes and platters popular
at American dinner tables in the 1950s
to even today. They
are given special titles such as Uncle
Charlie's Grilled Tuna Casserole and
Cousin Barry's Olive Oil Poached Salmon.
The menu is also peppered with
the house rules such as 'Keep your
elbows off the table'
Dessert Menu is seen through a
Viewfinder, a popular toy in the 1950s.
Beer Battered Onion Rings
Dad's Traditional Meat Loaf
Aunt Liz's Golden Fried Chicken
Mom's old Fashioned Pot Roast
I am very intrigued to
find out how the Disney chefs cook their
dishes for 50's Prime Time caf'.
Usually when you eat out in
restaurants, it's done in batch cooking
(large volumes at one time) and speed
for efficiency, but at 50's Prime Time,
your meal tastes like it took all day to
cook, just like Mom (or Dad) does.
My meatloaf was brimming with
flavor, juicy and tender, just how meat
loaf should be. The
mashed potatoes and gravy made a
delicious side and the green beans were
incredibly fresh and lacked the out of
the can taste I've experienced at some
chain restaurants offering home style
Everyone in my party
could agree that the food was excellent
and felt just like home, especially with
Hassan making sure we had good manners.
Though he wouldn't offer dessert
unless everyone cleaned their plate!
He made sure of it too, even if
he had to do it himself.
fed my last bite of potatoes before I
can get my phone back.
Scooter didn't eat any of his
desserts for you!
Our family dinner at 50's Prime Time
Caf' had sadly come to an end.
My friend Brian was gracious
enough to treat us to the whole dinner
and we definitely were thankful he let
us join in on this rollicking ride to
the 1950's. We were
lucky that Brian scored some
reservations he made earlier that day,
but Advanced Dining Reservations are
definitely recommended as the caf' is
very popular. You may
have some luck walking in if it's late
at night during a Fantasmic
Some people may find it
rude for your server to be yelling at
you or feeding you the rest of your
dinner, but here, guests look forward to
it and can't wait to see what they do
other tables watch you to see what you
get yelled at, especially if you come to
the table with your hat on.
In my experiences in dining at
50's Prime Time Caf', I've found the
larger the party, the more fun you'll
have, so definitely try and go with a
large group, even if you're not family,
because once you're there you'll
certainly become one!
(top row) Princess, Scooter
(bottom row) Skippy, Spanky, Cousin
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