When asked about dining at any Orlando area theme park resort, I encourage people to avoid in-park burgers and pizza. The nature of producing such a large amount of food in one location logically lowers overall quality. In most cases, a larger volume of sales leads to lower overall quality. Many foods service location balance this quite well. Walt Disney World does a masterful job of balancing this. Yet, Cosmic Ray Starlight Café provides an incredible amount of food for Magic Kingdom guests every day. The menu there looks like standard fast food for the most part.
However, the food quality at Cosmic Ray’s suffers for a variety of reasons such as the overall volume of sales and below average frozen burger patties. Yet, each year for Halloween season some type of new themed burgers pop up at Cosmic Ray’s. This year we get the “Bayou Burger.” This burger costs $12.99 with fries. You can utilize mobile ordering at this location during daytime theme park hours. This burger will be available during regular parking hours and during Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party. The menu description reads flame broiled 1/3 lb. angus hamburger topped with jalapeño pimento cheese, crispy andouille sausage, and garlic pickles.
In fairness to this counter service offering, the portion size deserves praise. Though I struggle with direct connection theme-wise of jalapeno pimento cheese and “Bayou” spookiness, I appreciate the creativity.
As you might expect, this burger struggles to be easy to recommend. Why should guests bother to order with standard below average previously frozen burger patties? Walt Disney World continues to be notorious for simply covering up low quality burger patties. The burger patty itself tastes dry as most burger patties do from this location. However, you get a 1/3-pound burger patty so this menu item functions as a solid portion option. Some guests felt the burger patty itself tasted like a higher quality burger than normal at Cosmic Ray’s. For the record, it tasted the same as a standard burger here to me.
The toppings should have starred for this burger. I felt disappointed by them. Once again, this burger cost $13 so perhaps I am asking too much for counter service at Magic Kingdom. The jalapeno pimento cheese helps but not enough. The jalapeno pimento cheese presents a decent flavor. Still, in my experience, the burger needed more than that. I hoped the sausage would help. Yet, the sausage tasted average. I would have preferred more spice from that component of this burger creation.
Though I did taste the pickles (not a fan), I was told they lacked true garlic flavor. To me a non-pickle expert, they tasted like basic dill pickles. My trusted sources said they tasted more like standard fast-food pickle. Also, I have several guest reports that their burgers lacked pickles at all. Do we have a pickle shortage?
On the positive side, this burger comes with fries. For a $13 entrée at Magic Kingdom, that combination of a 1/3 lb. burger with some fries offers a reasonable portion size. In fact, you might be able to split this burger between two people saving you some valuable theme park budget money. This works quite well if trying to enjoy all the Halloween food items in one night. However, the fries are basic fries with limited if any real seasoning. If buying this, you must desire a larger size burger with the unique pimento cheese and sausage toppings.
As expected, way too many flavors that do not match reside within this creation. I realize the non-sugary treats for Halloween at Magic Kingdom mostly offer higher spicy heat levels than many Walt Disney World guests prefer. Yet, I’m still not sure this burger would be worth your time and money during this after-hours party or during the day at Magic Kingdom. Of course, if portion size ranks as top priority, then that makes an exception to my critique. Magic Kingdom offers some better burgers on their everyday menu like at Pecos Bill’s.
If the plan called for utilizing the jalapeno pimento cheese to fit a spooky theme, then maybe a pimento cheese sandwich would have been a better idea. I would have preferred that type of menu item over this burger. Of course, I lack the perspective of food and beverage experts feeding thousands of people. As you should be able to tell, I would skip this one. As always, eat like you mean it!
Pirates & Princesses (PNP) is an independent, opinionated fan-powered news blog that covers Disney and Universal Theme Parks, Themed Entertainment and related Pop Culture from a consumer's point of view. Opinions expressed by our contributors do not necessarily reflect the views of PNP, its editors, affiliates, sponsors or advertisers. PNP is an unofficial news source and has no connection to The Walt Disney Company, NBCUniversal or any other company that we may cover.