1. Welcome to the Inside Universal Forums! Make sure to sign up and join the community! It's fast, free, and easy! DO IT!

Skold TR: Patty Melt Disasters and Oh That Airtime

Discussion in 'Universal Orlando' started by Skold, Jun 5, 2019.

  1. Skold

    Skold Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2016
    Messages:
    466
    Likes Received:
    926
    Hi everyone! So, we just got back from our 8th OUR trip in 6 years. It's about a 7-hour drive for us so we (me, Wife & Kid) go at least annually.

    We stayed at CBBR for 10 nights. This is our 5th time here, and it is definitely a favorite. This year, we got our best room ever, 7th floor Americana. I now always request America or Continental because the walk is too long from the new towers.

    [​IMG]

    This one also had an unbelievable view of the volcano!

    [​IMG]

    At night, I read my book but really could not stop watching it.

    [​IMG]

    It was awesome.

    Overall, there were bigger crowds than in the past (this was our third year going around Memorial Day), including at the pools and bars, but our early-morning touring plans payed off. Back to the hotel for a 1:00ish to 4:00-ish swim, and then back to the parks for thinning-out night crowds.

    We did all 3 UOR parks, SeaWorld (first time I've been since 1993!), and spent Memorial Day at Disney Springs. I'll talk about some of the new things we saw/learned in upcoming posts (including two very strange patty melts and Krakatao and Maku airtime!).
     

    Attached Files:

    Doug A., Disneyhead, Coasted and 4 others like this.
  2. Mad Dog

    Mad Dog Premium Member

    Joined:
    Jan 30, 2013
    Messages:
    16,669
    Likes Received:
    25,856
    Location:
    Pittsburgh area
    We probably walked right by you at the pool. CBBR is such a great resort for the money. Great pools, pretty damn good food court, excellent pool bars/restaurants, fantastic eclectic atmosphere. We hadn't been there for a few years, and had forgotten how good it is. We stayed there at the end of our vacation, after checking out of RP. I'll probably stay there again in Nov. after we finish the Disney portion of the vacation.
     
  3. Skold

    Skold Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2016
    Messages:
    466
    Likes Received:
    926
    Yep, it is great!

    Arrived Wednesday, and spent Wednesday - Sunday going park-to-park-to park, skipped Memorial Day park crowds, and did the same thing through Saturday except for one day at SeaWorld.

    Cool IOA stuff:
    • Well, sadly Hagrid softs did not work out. Oh well, we didn't plan for them or anything, but it would have been cool.
    • The refurbed Ultrasaur and Stegos on JPRA look great! It's been years since I've seen them like this.
    • The little Compy's tugging on Bob's shirt at the boat wreck, though... ugh. They were inactive the entire time and covered in a mesh.
    • Camp Jurassic rules for kids, and adults who like to relax and knock one back while they water fight.
    • [​IMG]
    • New Raptor Encounter dino is great, also. The placement is a little wonky but I realize that is temporary.
    • Whole Land is walls and barren land, though. Cannot wait for the coaster and new trees to be put in.
    • Locker lines at FJ were longer than I've ever seen.
    • New FJ locker procedure as of Friday, though. The main queue to the castle was (is?) now for lockers only, then you head back out to the extended queue which leads to the outdoor queue portion. You completely miss the first hallway.
    • Did the Kong backstage tour. TMs were great! One brought us to unload where we got to ride while waiting for the guide. He then took us through the queue to points out all the cool stuff, like the radio set up and the camp supplies.
    • [​IMG]
    • [​IMG]
    • He took pics of us with the shamaness, as they call her. According to him, she is trying to scare us out of there and does want us to desecrate this holy ground. Kinda feel bad, now. ;)
    • They call the slug-thing in the glass box, Sierra.
    • We got to go on the ride again after he walked us through. No ride behind-the-scenes stuff, though.
    • My W & K hate the scare actor, so this got us two rides without him. Our guide says they are low on actors and they usually only work mornings these days.
    • On one of our afternoon entries into Port of Entry, a family of three came up and asked if we wanted their Fast Passes. They had used them in USF but only on Hulk in IOA and were leaving for the day. They, of course, were talking about the limited Express Pass so we accepted and thanked them profusely. Used them on everything that night, including Kong, so we got another no-SA ride in!
    • When I said everything I meant everything -including High In the Sky Trolley right at park close. It shut down due to technical problems right as we were about to go, so they gave us each a SAPP.
    • Single Attraction Pass Plus. Never saw these before:
    • [​IMG]
    • What a deal, one more EP for later in the week! It did say that they were not valid for Pteranodon Flyers or Hagrid's (!) though.
    • One morning we did a "water day", where we basically wore our swim stuff and did Popeye x 3 Dudley x2, and JPRA front row x 2.
    • While JPRA's refurb mostly looked great, Dudley's new paint job could use even more paint. Those tracks look rough.
    • Riding with first-time riders on Popeye is hilarious. Maybe one of my favorite things. Big guys asking if they'll get wet, then squealing when they do! :lmao:
    • Nice pic of Stan in Doom's throne in the arcade:
    • [​IMG]
     

    Attached Files:

    Doug A., Teebin, Disneyhead and 3 others like this.
  4. Skold

    Skold Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2016
    Messages:
    466
    Likes Received:
    926
    On to part 3 - USF and VB!

    USF:
    • Had a great time, but not too much that is new.
    • EPA was here, so we rope-dropped that 2x and did a flawless DMMM, Gringotts, HRRR opening both times.
    • DMMM was still 3D.
    • Overall, the new lockers were great. We carry a backpack, but were able to fit it in the small lockers (sometimes barely, but it fit).
    • Saw the Cinematic Spectacular in the AP area and we all loved it. Pacing could be better but it is great. Someone in our party may have teared up. :look:
    • AP lounge is fine, I guess. Chairs and AC if you need a break. The sign on the door says "no outside food or drink" but no one said anything when I brought a beer in. Snacks were not out either time we went in, but we did get our AP pins there.
    • Gringotts now has chains up for lockers, with one side to go in and one side to go out. Seemed unnecessary, especially with the new lockers.
    VB:
    • We rope-dropped 2x, and got all the slides in by 1:00 both times (and never needed to reserve a time). 7:45 arrival was the sweet spot for getting in line for a 8:00 EPA opening.
    • In the past, we had settled on going to the lockers by Maku and Puihi and going on the water coaster multiple times first thing,
    • But, there was a TM and rope right after Oh No and Oh Ya. She said that section of the park was closed until 9:00.
    • We backtracked and got the lockers by the Waturi Marketplace which are always crowded and should be avoided, and did Oh Ya. We talked to the TM about the unexpected change in our plans, and he said that the coaster was indeed open. Turns out you can walk through the volcano to get to it.
    • We were still able to ride that 2x in a row before lines started. Whew!
    • On our second day, we wanted to get the lockers by the red boat bar but there was a rope up for that side, too! You can go through the beach and get back on the path by the kids area, so we did that and got the lockers in the back.
    • We did the coaster 3x in a row that morning - the first 2 without having to even get out.
    • I love this thing. If you lean one direction or the other it looks like you could flip over, but you can get some great airtime, especially at the crest before the last drop. We mastered that by the 5th ride! :freak:
    • Last year, the bars were not really ready at 10:00 despite supposedly opening then. That is fixed now, and I was able to get beers right around 10:00! :cheers:
    • My wife got her new favorite, Stiegel.
    • The red boat bar is an awesome place to have a drink and watch the wave pool and volcano!
    • [​IMG]


    I think I have two more posts - CityWalk and the patty melts, and our two non-OUR days. :grin:
     

    Attached Files:

    Doug A., Coasted and Mad Dog like this.
  5. Skold

    Skold Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2016
    Messages:
    466
    Likes Received:
    926
    All right, time for CityWalk and patty melts!

    NBC
    • It's become a bit of a tradition to do NBC our first night there. K loves the foosball tables and the menu usually is pretty decent (although they have been steadily removing items since it opened). So, I thought I'd try the patty melt. From the menu: "Grilled cheese sandwich buns, beef patty, smoked brisket, truffle onions, 1000 Island sauce on the side".
    • I thought this meant that there'd be buttery slices of bread with cheese on each, but to my surprise the buns were actually entire grilled cheese sandwiches when it arrived to the table! I'd had one of these at a local pub before and the grilled cheese sandwiches were not good buns, and this was exactly the same. Just a single floppy processed piece of cheese, and none of the four pieces of bread were grilled properly at all. It was bad news. I was so shocked by how badly this was put together that I forgot to take a pic (I don't usually take pics of my food).
    • Luckily, I'm proficient at Photoshop, so I used MS Paint to recreate this disaster:
    • [​IMG]
    • As you can see from this expertly rendered drawing, the bread was barely grilled! I added a pint glass to show how giant this thing was even though I got a flight (which was great). Avoid this.
    • We went back later on to watch a period of the Stanley Cup final and got the giant pretzel, and that was great, though!
    Toothsome
    • When we went to Toothsome later that week, I saw this on the menu: the French Toast Patty Melt. From the menu: "Challah, half-pound housemade fresh hamburger patty, sunny-side up egg, grilled pork belly, cheddar cheese, Lyonnaise potatoes." I was back in business!
    • Holy crap was I wrong:
    • [​IMG]
    • How are you supposed to eat this thing?!? Each piece of french toast was like 3 inches thick! I asked if they had instructions. They didn't.

    • Oh well. The highlight of our CityWalk meals (the two above plus Andojitos and Bubba Gump) was Pat O'Brien's. Great food, and my kid loved taking up requests to the piano player and putting bills in the tip jar. We really had a fun time there.
    • Luckily, they do not serve patty melts.
     

    Attached Files:

    Doug A. likes this.
  6. Skold

    Skold Rookie

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2016
    Messages:
    466
    Likes Received:
    926
    So that drawing was meant to be a joke. Tough crowd! :grin:

    And we're moving on...

    The last two things I wanted to report are our two non-UOR days.

    Disney Springs:
    • We try to avoid the parks on Memorial Day because of the crowds, so we went to Disney Springs after lunch this year. It was a lot more fun than I expected!
    • Kid loved the Star Wars store and building plastic lightsabers.
    • We stopped by the Pop Gallery which had some really cool items.
    • Also, a lot of time spent in the Lego store. Building and talking to a CM about the $800 Millennium Falcon set. The guy had a lot of fun facts and stories about it - must've spent at least 10 minutes with him.
    • We had a reservation for VOID. My wife wanted to do the Wreck It Ralph one and it was absolutely awesome. About 15 minutes in pre-show - selecting your character, getting instructions, and putting the backpack and helmets on. And then another 15 doing the VR game. We had so much fun on this - highly recommended.
    • ADR for Art Smith's Homecomin'. Service was awesome, food and drinks were great, and the kid definitely wants to go back next time we're in Orlando. We sat on the screened porch in order to look over the water - it was cool, but not as cozy or scenic as I thought it would be. But this place is great - definitely try it if you haven't.
    • Got some margaritas, more Lego store (which you can take margaritas in to) and finished the day at the Coke store. Pretty cool - you can get samplers, and there's a meet and greet with the bear.
    • [​IMG]
    • Overall, I did not expect to have this much fun at a shopping center, but we had a blast.

    SeaWorld:
    • I had not bee in a very long time, and W & K had never been.
    • Rope-dropped Manta, and got Atlantis, Kraken, and Penguins in within the hour.
    • Empire of the Penguin is a strange ride - what a neat ride system, yet what a boring ride experience.
    • Saw all of the four shows they had that day, saw all of the animal exhibits.
    • Did not do Infinity Falls - lines were always over 55 minutes and it was a really hot day. In hindsight, we should have rope-dropped this.
    • Mako is awesome! We went on it 5x throughout the day. The first time, I could not breath going over that first hill. The airtime is crazy, and those little restraints do not look or feel like they're going to keep you in. Scenery is a little barren during that middle section, but it is definitely one of my favorites.
    • Liked the park well enough; not sure if we'll be back this year or next year, though.
    And that's it! Thanks for reading along! :cheers: :bow:
     

    Attached Files:

    • Coke.jpg
      Coke.jpg
      File size:
      215.4 KB
      Views:
      25
    Doug A. likes this.

Share This Page