On my last Disney World adventure I had one of the most unique dining experiences that I have EVER chosen: Sanaa! Why is it so unique you might ask? Many people are quick to say “No!” when they learn that Sanaa serves “African or Indian cuisine.” I’m sure most people glance at the menu and think, “Oh this is going to be weird and spicy!” Luckily that is not the case at all. Yes, the food does have an authentic African/Indian flare to it, but most people find it delicious and unique. Join me as we talk about Disney World Dining: Sanaa, to find out why I love it!
Disney World Dining: Sanaa
There are two main reasons I love Sanaa: Ambiance and Cuisine.
Sanaa is a table-service restaurant located at the Animal Kingdom Lodge in the Kidani Village. Quite frankly, its location is a hot minute from the rest of Disney World, so some people don’t give Sanaa a chance simply because of where it is. Fortunately, once you arrive and see the scenery and eat the food, it definitely makes the trip worth it! As you make your way downstairs where the restaurant is located you’ll see that the entrance features some beautiful, handcrafted African artwork. The beads that line the podium are simply gorgeous. You might even be able to spy a Hidden Mickey on the mats behind the counter where the “Sanaa” Sign is displayed. The waiting area outside of the restaurant features large windows that look out onto Sunset Savanna, the same view that you’ll enjoy once you’re seated inside. This plays into the ambiance that I mentioned earlier! Be sure to keep your eyes open to see some amazing hand-crafted decorations.
In the main dining room, the view above changes to resemble a tree canopy with rustic lanterns hanging from the branches overhead. One of the reasons I wanted to eat at this restaurant was the view! I requested a Savanna view before I was seated and it was so neat! Chances are great that you’ll have an opportunity to see a variety of animals as you dine.
Walt Express Tip
If seeing animals is important to you, here’s a TIP: be sure to book your Advanced Dining Reservation for earlier in the day. Choose either lunch or an early dinner. Later reservations might fall after dark, and you won’t be able to see much except your reflection in the glass at that point. With all of that being said, now it’s time to take a look at the menu!
I had no idea what to order but our waitress was amazing! She walked me through all of the drink options and the entire menu. She suggested the Bread Service for an appetizer, so that’s where the meal began.
The Famous Bread Service
If you’re dining at Sanaa for the very first time, you should know that bread service here is not complimentary. However, it is very much worth the price of $17.00. It came with some incredible breads and accompanying nine sauces and spreads. My favorite sauces were Roasted Red Pepper Hummus, Mango Chutney and Tamarind Chutney. The Bread Service was so unique and it was a great way to start the dinner.
When it came to the entree part of the meal I decided to choose the Potjie Inspired option. This is where I got to choose one meat and one vegetable dish from several options and it was also served with rice. Overall the Butter Chicken was my favorite! The Butter Chicken I ate was so tender and flavorful, my fork would glide right through it. I loved it so much I now have created my own recipe and make it at home pretty often.
Dessert was nothing short of amazing also. I had the Caramel N’dizi, which was Banana Financier with Caramelized Milk Chocolate Crémeux, Hazelnut Crunch, Banana-White Chocolate Chantilly, and Ginger Raspberries.
Disney Dining Plan
Sanaa is one table service credit per person on the Disney Dining Plan. The Bread Service is not included and will need to be purchased separately. The price for the bread service is $17.00.
Why I Love Sanaa
Sanaa remains one of my absolute top picks for dining at Disney World. Sure, it’s a little inconvenient, with its waaaaaaay off the beaten path location in Kidani Village. It’s true: you will likely need to mark off a few hours if you dine here. But it’s so worth it! The food is phenomenal. In addition to that, the care that Imagineers took in creating this restaurant is apparent everywhere. The view of the Sunset Savanna — free with a meal!! — is unparalleled. Usually, you would pay big bucks to see animals like this.
And don’t forget, once you’re at Animal Kingdom Lodge, there’s plenty to look at and see there as well. Even if you aren’t staying at Animal Kingdom Lodge, this restaurant is worth the trip. It is definitely a hidden gem and reservations aren’t too hard to get here!
If you plan to head back to Animal Kingdom Park, be sure to check out these snacks that are available! ANIMAL KINGDOM SNACKS!
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