A Review of AbracadaBar Post Disney’s Shutdown

    Have you wondered whether AbracadaBar at Disney World is worth a visit? Are you curious how the bar has changed after the COVID-19 shutdown? We stopped there recently to check it out.

    AbracadaBar is surprisingly accessible for a lot of guests staying on Disney property. It is located on Disney’s Boardwalk. People who are not staying at the Disney’s Boardwalk, Beach Club, or Yacht Club resorts, can access the Boardwalk via the Disney Skyliner. The last stop of the Skyliner departs at Epcot near the France pavilion. When you disembark, simply walk in the opposite direction of Epcot and take a left across the foot bridge. It is perhaps a half mile walk from the station.

    AbracadaBar is currently open from 4:00 PM to 10:00 PM seven days a week. While the Boardwalk is open, the neighboring resorts are not (and some of the stores are closed as well). Only Disney Vacation Club members can currently stay at the resorts, which means the Boardwalk is practically empty. We encountered very few guests and there was no line to get into AbracadaBar. This will likely change as more people attend the parks, and as Disney gradually opens the deluxe resorts in the surrounding area. The Walt Disney Swan and Dolphin Resort is open, so guests looking to stay on property could pursue that option.

    The outside of AbracadaBar is brightly lit and advertises “Enchanting Elixars” and “Curious Concoctions!” Their logo depicts an upside down top hat with a magic wand disappearing into the hat, as if by magic.

    Social distancing was not an issue due to the low volume of people attending the Boardwalk. However, we would still attend AbracadaBar even if the number of people in the area increased. Despite being a small venue, available tables were spaced 6′ apart and bar stools had been removed from the bar area to promote social distancing. The bar was set-up for parties of two, while the tables could accommodate larger groups.

   We witnessed cast members thoroughly washing and disinfecting every table, including the chairs, after every party. The tables were also allowed to sit for five minutes or longer in-between guests, giving the disinfectant the necessary time to be effective. 

    We love the decor and overall feeling of AbracadaBar. The walls are plastered with regal looking wallpaper and the booths are plush and red. Framed video screens display vintage style posters. Advertisements of make believe magicians with shocking newspaper headlines decorate the walls.

    Magical artifacts are displayed haphazardly on shelves and behind the bar, such as playing cards, hoops, and trick birdcages. We loved the displays, but we would have enjoyed a little more creativity in the pieces selected. The decorations are stereotypical magician items and sometimes feel status quo. They feel like props, and not so much stuff used by actual magicians. We also missed the complexity and depth found at Trader Sam’s. What you see is what you get… there isn’t much left to discover on return trips.

    Like all of the restaurants and bars located on Disney property, the menu is now a digital one. Guests use the camera on their mobile phone to scan a QR code, which then opens the menu in an internet browser. Our cellular signal was strong here (we use Verizon), so accessing the menu was not an issue and we appreciated not having to touch a recycled menu before drinking.

    Since we love rum, we had to try a rum cocktail first. Hoodunit’s Punch ($15) features Captain Morgan’s Spiced Rum, along with orange juice, pineapple juice, and coconut. It was a refreshing cocktail that wasn’t too strong and felt balanced. If you’ve been missing your local tiki bar, Hoodunit’s Punch might be a good option for you. Unfortunately if you are not a fan of Captain Morgan’s Spiced Rum, there were not many substitution options. The coasters are a fun collectible and feature AbracadaBar’s top hat logo. 

    Magic Mirror is a cocktail featuring Bacardi Rum, soda water, mango syrup, Sprite, and lime juice. It’s purple color is one of the “tricks” of AbracadaBar. Ordinarily when you order the Magic Mirror cocktail, the bartender would have you wave your hand above the glass and the mixed drink would transform in color from blue to purple before your very own eyes. Unfortunately the show associated with this cocktail has been discontinued as a result of COVID-19. We were told the bartenders are no longer allowed to perform it. We wonder if the cocktails at Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto will suffer the same fate when Trader Sam’s eventually reopens. The Uh-oa! routine would be difficult to perform while maintaining social distancing (though it is worth noting the performance surrounding the Kitchen Sink at Disney’s Beaches & Cream Soda Shop has returned post COVID-19, so anything is possible!) Without the Disney magic associated with the Magic Mirror cocktail, we would recommend passing on this drink. It has an almost metallic taste and the ingredients are not cohesive. There are better options on the menu, such as the Black Manhattan.  

    The eats available at AbracadaBar are limited and include Abra Fries ($11), a Charcuterie Plate ($21), and a Margherita Flatbread ($19). There is a restaurant next door, so food isn’t really AbracadaBar’s specialty. With that said, the Margherita Flatbread was quite tasty (even if we wouldn’t describe it as a flatbread). It was decently sized and very filling thanks to its thickness. 

    We love rum, but AbracadaBar is not known for having great rum cocktails. It is, however, known for its wide array of whiskey. Our favorite cocktail on the menu was by far the Black Manhattan, which features Bulleit Rye Whiskey, Amara Averna, and orange bitters. It retails for $15.00. It was recommended to us by our bartender, Skip, as well as some of our followers on Instagram. There are no gimmicks associated with this cocktail, and the ingredients are simple, but if you order one cocktail from AbracadaBar, we suggest making it the Black Manhattan.

    Skip was a fantastic bartender and made our night thoroughly enjoyable. He wore both a face mask and a face shield and washed his hands frequently. We felt very safe having Skip as our bartender and he went above and beyond to make sure our experience was an excellent one.

    We also tried the Parlor Trick ($15) made of Four Roses Bourbon Small Batch, simple syrup, and a splash of soda water. It was enjoyable, but we preferred the Side Car ($12). The Side Car is made using E and J V.S. Brandy, Cointreau, and house-made sweet-and-sour. Both are decent cocktails if you are looking to try something new.

    If mixed drinks aren’t your cup of tea, Disney advertises that a “wide variety of bourbon, whiskey, scotch single malt and blends, cognac, cordials, and liqueurs are available. Ask your server for details.” We didn’t try any specific pours during our visit, but a few labels behind the bar caught our eye. If we visited AbracadaBar again, we would definitely experiment with some of the available whiskeys.

    Overall we would definitely return to AbracadaBar and recommend it to others. It doesn’t have the same allure that Trader Sam’s has, but the atmosphere is still catchy and the drinks are some of the best found on Disney property. We were also impressed by their response to the COVID-19 pandemic and felt very safe while visiting. 

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