Friday, June 10, 2016

Disney Reviews Restaurant Edition #21-Sci-Fi Dine-In Cafe

Disney's Hollywood Studios is a'changin...drastically. Whole sections are being removed to make room for new lands, roadways will be getting remade to accommodate better traffic flow, parking lots will be moved and even the entrance is rumored to be shifted to another section of the park. In a couple of years, it will probably be like an entirely new park. I'm still on the fence about whether or not this is a good thing. Granted, it has needed severe love for quite some time...I'm just not sure that the direction they are going in is the right one. But it really doesn't matter what I think, change is change and it's going to be done, whether it's for the better or the worse will have to wait.

When it comes to restaurants, DHS is my least favorite park to eat at. There are very few sit-down restaurants and most counter service locations are your typical burger and fries fare...which is fine every once in a while, but not all the time. They have tried over the years to fix this, but their way of doing that is to make food combinations so weird, I wouldn't touch most of it with a ten foot pole!

My Sister absolutely LOVES The Hollywood Brown Derby, but I have a hate/sometimes like relationship with it...most times I can tolerate the food well enough. It's important to her to eat there though, so I can deal because she does so much for me, it's the least I can do (although I'm not always good at controlling my negative comments). I have already reviewed it HERE, so no need to rehash. Since The Studios is a one-day park (and I don't think any amount of rebuilding is going to change that), Brown Derby is usually our DHS restaurant and we rarely vary off-schedule. We did, however, try the Brown Derby Lounge instead this past trip, so I might have to review that later.

Since lands are closing and areas are being torn down, we figured we might want to hit a couple of eating places that might not be there in a few years, hence our revisit to Sci-Fi. I've always preferred theming over food quality to an extent...if the food is just OK, but the theming is amazing, then I will still love the restaurant and Sci-Fi is just that...themed to the max with so-so food.
We have eaten there twice before, once in 2004 and again in 2005. I didn't take food pictures in 2004 and the only one I have from that meal is one of my Sister and her husband. It was at the end of a very long day and neither of them was very happy, so I doubt they would want me sharing that memorable "gem". It didn't help that the food ended up not being very good, but in all fairness, stupid me ordered BBQ and, since I'm from the South and an hour from Memphis, TN, BBQ anywhere else is pretty much a joke anyway.

In 2005, we tried again and, although the food was better, it still wasn't great and we decided not to risk it again. For some reason, I only have pictures of my food and not my Sister's, but here it is:
I think it was a BBQ chicken sandwich with onion straws on it, but I can't be too sure and apparently I didn't learn from my BBQ fiasco the year before. I also had a cookies and cream milkshake and, despite the quality of the food, that was the best C&C milkshake I have ever had in my entire life (albeit extremely messy)!
Some bad memories fade and soften with time (yes, even my ingrained Asper ones), so we decided to try one more time (possibly for the last ever). For those unfamiliar with the place, it's set up to be like a drive-in movie theater:
Oh, and for reference, want to see how much camera quality has changed over 12 years? Here's an interior shot from 2004 with the flash on (the current pic above is flash-off):
But back to the present, the theme is also complete with cheesy sci-fi movie trailers and old Disney spots on the big screen in front of your "car"/table:
And, although they do have tables, the exciting part is sitting in your own "car" (although you can't tell it from the look on Am's face):
Now granted, neither one of us felt very good when we walked in the door anyway...I had a headache and Am was sick to her stomach. Probably not the best time to eat at a historically bad restaurant, but there we were, so we tried to make the best of it.

Somehow, I managed to get talked into the seasonal burger and let me tell you, this was quite possibly the nastiest thing I have EVER put in my mouth! I can't for the life of me remember what the "fried" thing on the top was. It was a kind of cheese that I would normally like, but the combination of it being fried and seasoned made it quite vomit-inducing. Don't get me started on the sauce on top either...again, a "normal" flavor they brutalized to the point of making it virtually unrecognizable as a consumable flavor. After about gagging bite three, I dismantled the burger and ate the patty, leaving everything else messed up all over the plate.
And Am played it safe with a Reuben, but was so sick, she couldn't eat much of it.
I SOOO wanted to order another C&C milkshake, but I never could get our server's attention to ask and by the time I did, I had already chickened out (a bad habit of mine).

After all was said and done, our last ever meal at Sci-Fi was the worst of them all. My headache had ramped up so high afterwards that I was also now sick to my stomach, and along with my sister, we ended up camping out at the bathrooms for quite some time afterwards. Although, I did manage the coolest picture ever of a scooter and their collection of magic bands:
If I wasn't such a a neat freak, I would TOTALLY have all mine linked up like that and hanging from some extremely visible place like my work ceiling or my car mirror or something! Right now though, all my magic bands live in their appropriate year-organized boxes.

Although the meal was a total flop, at least we said a possible good-bye to an old "favorite" (questionable wording there) and I got a new magic band storage idea! Given the chance, yes, I would probably try to eat there yet again (it really is incredibly cool on the inside), but I would stick to appetizers and drinks only and stay far away from anything "specialty". Definitely NOT worth the waste of a dining plan table service credit. I'm actually looking forward to the Brown Derby this fall now!


Bea said...

Sounds like a total disaster. I get so fed up when people try gimmicks with food. Mess with the name or the description all you want, but don't actually mess with the stuff people are going to eat.

Heather said...

I'm sorry you had such a bad time. This is one of my favorite restaurants

Mii Stitch said...

Oh I really like the setting!! Looks really cool! But must agree the food doesn't look appetizing. Hope you both recovered.

Linda said...

Wow. Sounds bad. Me personally would stick to just plain old hamburgers or hot dogs.


Cathy said...

Never eaten here either. We usually do the ABC Commissary. I didn't know they were doing that much changing at the studios. But it does need something done to it.

Tiffstitch said...

Yikes... good to know about this, I don't think theming over food will do it for me, but I've yet to have the experience.

Vickie said...

This is one of my favorite places...I am so sorry that you had a bad time.