Monday, January 26, 2015

Lunch at the Bayou

When my friend Stacy invited me to join her and the family at Disneyland to take photos of her dad's 65th birthday celebration, she sealed the deal with lunch invitations at the Blue Bayou. It was the equivalent of waving catnip in front of a feline; I was powerless to say "no."

There's something about this restaurant's nighttime-during-the-day atmosphere that weaves a magic spell over me. I lose track of time and find myself gawking over the plastic lanterns above. Wouldn't you love to sneak up these stairs and take photos from the balcony? These are the thoughts that go through my head.

If the lights were up, I am sure the faux plantation façade and phony wisteria would lose much of their luster to me.

Instead, I feel like I'm back in the south at an outdoor restaurant with the sounds of frogs and crickets fading into the background.

A set table awaiting the next group of guests.

My one gripe with the Blue Bayou is about what the food has become. The sourdough-style rolls that had a delicious crunchy crust have been replaced with a selection of breads that taste like they came from the grocery store…and not a good one. My favorite wedge salad with the yummy vinaigrette, blue cheese, and bits of andouille sausage has been replaced with a mess of shredded…who knows what. The once southern-style menu has been Andrew Sutton-fied.

The recipe for the Tesoro Island Chicken Breast seems to have also undergone a metamorphosis: "Pan-seared with Boursin Cheese Mashed Potatoes, Sautéed Spinach, and Fennel Confit with Roasted Shallot Reduction." Fancy-fancy sounding, but again, on the plate, it just looks a little bit like a mess. It tasted ok, but nothing that would make me rush back.

I reached over to take a shot of Stacy's Monte Cristo Sandwich. What was once my favorite item at the Bayou has been changed beyond recognition.

I get it; eating food that is deep fried is not good for you. However, I can eat healthy at home; no need to spend $27 for this somewhat bland version of what I used to love. Compare with what it used to look like in 2005; oh that golden deep-fried crust. My arteries are clogging just thinking about it. And for those who are crying tears for the health of children and adults everywhere, take care of it in your own kitchen. Nothing wrong with moderation and a little cheat every now and then. But then again, this is Disney. They have to be middle-of-the-road and not offend the moral minority.

After your meal, don't forget to use the restroom; it is probably the nicest one in the park!

See more Daveland vintage & current Disneyland Blue Bayou Restaurant photos at my main website.

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Sunday, January 25, 2015

Casey Junior's Circus Special

As I mentioned before, I was unable to ride the Storybook Land canal boats due to them being closed, BUT I was able to hop onto Casey Junior's Circus Train instead! Always good to have alternatives. I took the opportunity to snap a recent shot of what was once this attraction's ticket booth.

Interesting to note that while the chimney now has a whimsical bend to it, the roof tiles have taken a turn towards dullsville.

A closer look at the ticket window for you:

Back to present day, as I waited (somewhat) patiently in the line queue, I photographed Casey making his journey back towards the station.

Here he comes…I wonder which car I'll get?

Turning around I shot these beautiful topiary arches, which look even better at night when the lights are twinkling.

All aboard!

See more Daveland vintage & current Disneyland Casey Jr. photos at my main website.

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Saturday, January 24, 2015

Rock Hudson Swings

We have all heard that Rock Hudson was a swinger; now Daveland provides photographic evidence.

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Friday, January 23, 2015

2 Snow Whites for the Price of 1

This vintage September 1961 shot is something you just don't see at Disneyland: two of the same characters in one photo! You can clearly see Snow White herself waltzing into the frame from the right-hand side, accompanied by the Seven Dwarfs.

Zooming in a bit, we see something near and dear to my heart: the original Snow White attraction line queue mural:

Zooming in even closer, you can see a SECOND costumed Snow White, hanging out in the line queue.

I can only imagine the kind of trauma this would have caused for the wee ones.

See more Daveland Disneyland Snow White's Scary Adventures photos at my main website.

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Thursday, January 22, 2015

Early Morning on Sunset Pt. 3: Hollywood High

My only previous shots of Hollywood High School were of the Mural that was being painted back in 2002 by Eloy Torrez. Built in 1910, this Art Moderne classic was right on my way home as I was dashing down Sunset with my camera early one morning last month.

Who would ever think that a high school could be a work of art?

The lettering style is a favorite of mine, very much like that used in Burbank at the Disney Studio.

The clouds added to the beauty of this quiet morning.

Oh the beautiful round corners of Art Moderne. If only life were this smooth!

The designs in the concrete blocks are reminiscent of what Frank Lloyd Wright used in many of his buildings.

To think that Judy Garland, Sarah Jessica Parker, Mickey Rooney, Carol Burnett, and Lana Turner actually got their diplomas here!

See more Daveland Hollywood High School photos at my main website.

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