One of the reasons why Disney World is a great vacation spot is because of the care and attention the cast members give to those who have allergies. This past trip was the first time I experienced having a meal with a food allergy. On our first night, Howard and I went to Captain Cook's in the Polynesian Resort with a specific dish in mind: Pork Nachos ($7.99).
This particular counter service restaurant has kiosks for simplified ordering. I know there are some who don't like ordering this way, but I actually enjoy it! I thought it was fun when this option was available at Pecos Bill in Magic Kingdom too. Unfortunately, due to my allergy to pineapple, ordering the pork nachos via this system wasn't the safest thing to do as there was no way to indicate the need for a modification. Since I couldn't get the attention of any of the people cooking the food behind the glass, I chose to speak to a cast member at a register.
The girl at the register was actually "earning [her] ears," so I spoke to her and an older man who was training her. He told me that I could just order it through the touch screen system and then bring it to them for a modification. When we went back to the kiosk, the man came back again and said that he realized I had said allergy, so he was going to get the manager to speak to me.
The manager was very accommodating when I explained that I was allergic to pineapple but we still wanted it on the side since Howard could eat it. He wrote a ticket that you can see below and reassured me that gloves would be changed when handling the products so that the main dish wouldn't be contaminated. My allergy to pineapple is more of a recent issue, and I actually haven't been officially tested. However, it's not worth risking it, so I still needed it on the side. I don't think changing gloves was completely necessary for me either, but I was appreciative of the great care they took to allow me as the guest a satisfying dining experience despite my restrictions.
We brought the ticket to the cashier along with another item from the refrigerated section and paid. Just a few minutes later, our buzzer went off indicating that we could return to the counter to pick up our food. The manager was the one who handed it to us.
The pork nachos were absolutely delicious! Instead of using tortilla chips, they're made with homemade potato chips and wonton chips, so it was definitely crunchy. Though the pork was a little bit on the dry side (seems as if they might have been ready for a new batch), the components all worked together. Howard and I devoured this plate hungrily and happily.
The pineapple was given to us in a cup, and as you can see, it was more of a pineapple salsa as there was some onion in it as well. Howard apologized to me when he ate it because he did say the dish was made even better with the addition of these flavors! I do wish that I could have tried it as the Disney chefs intended for it to be eaten, but I was still completely satisfied scooping up more of the tomatoes.
One of the popular parts of Captain Cook's is their self-serve pineapple Dole whip machine, which was probably my favorite snack in all of Disney World. It would have been really fun trying to fill the cup as much as I could and splitting that with my husband, but of course, this is no longer a treat I can enjoy. Instead, we did split the In House Hand Rolled Spicy Shrimp Sushi from the Kona Island Sushi Bar upstairs ($8.99) for our "dessert." This had just the right amount of spice to it to provide a little kick without being too overpowering. Though nachos and sushi don't really seem to be two dishes that go well together, it was an excellent ending to our meal.
Though my allergy is definitely not as severe as those who cannot have casein or gluten, I couldn't help but feel that Disney took great care of me and my needs. I have some friends with more life-threatening allergies who have said that they have always been treated well by the chefs at table service restaurants who personally come out to speak to them before they order. With so many dietary needs and restrictions nowadays, it makes Disney World an even better vacation spot because they go to great lengths to ensure it is a safe vacation spot.