Celebrity chef Wolfgang Puck has opened a new restaurant in Disney Springs, offering guests a “laid-back Californian dining experience.”
The new Wolfgang Puck Bar and Grill opened with little advance notice on Monday. It’s the fourth U.S. location for his modernized take on the “bar and grill,” and his second attempt at table service dining at Disney Springs, following the closure of the Wolfgang Puck Grand Cafe in August 2017.
“We are very excited to be returning to Disney Springs with the Bar & Grill concept,” Puck said in a news release. “The restaurant is a perfect fit for the area and we look forward to bringing our cuisine to locals and all of the visitors to this area as well. My team and our partners all have something fresh to introduce and we cannot wait to see it flourish.”
The 250-seat restaurant across from the Planet Hollywood in Disney Springs had been hidden behind construction walls as late as last week.
The menu ranges from BBQ shrimp and fennel sausage pizzas for lunch to a dinner menu featuring lasagna, sea bass and red snapper. The highest-priced entree on the menu is a $84, a 32-ounce Porterhouse steak for two.
The new restaurant, open from 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and from 11 a.m. to midnight on Fridays and Saturdays, will feature a full-service bar and a walk-up window where guests can quickly order pastries and gelato.
It joins other celebrity-driven locations in the West Side section of Disney Springs, such as Food Network host Guy Fieri’s Chicken Guy. The area will also be home to City Works Eatery & Pour House when it opens in summer 2019.
Puck has a history with Disney theme parks — and not always a positive one.
The 2001 opening of Disney’s California Adventure in Anaheim featured his Avalon Cove restaurant, which was expected to be one of the biggest draws in fine dining for any theme park. But the crowds failed to materialize, with the park averaging only 4,500 guests per day, far less than the 19,000 Disney predicted. With attendance further dampened by the downturn in tourism following the September 11th attacks, Puck pulled out of the restaurant in October of that year, just eight months after it opened.