Sunday, June 30, 2013

Summer Vacation.

   Hey guys! Over the next two months,  I will be in the process of restructuring Disney Hipster Blog...and rethinking our objectives for this site.  During this couple of months things here on the site will be much slower than normal.  Not dead...but slower.  Think three blog posts a week as opposed to the current five or six.  I'm going to use the extra time to benefit the future and supposed longevity of the blog.
   While I'm assuming that this is temporary, there is a chance that the new three a week model will stick around.  Again, we're just testing what works for the site.  Speaking of which, if you have any feedback (comments, likes, dislikes, etc...) please let us know.  We would really love the opportunity to improve the content here as well.   Thanks so much for everyones ridiculously awesome support.


Sunday Quickie: Tough To Be A Dung Ball

   Inside the wonderfully cavernous queue of It's Tough To Be A Bug we find a giant ball of dung.  It might not be my favorite attraction at Disney's Animal Kingdom, but it sure has an appropriate waiting area, right?

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Disney Blog Round Up: 6/29/13

   We had a BIG week here on Disney Hipster Blog!
      - We kicked off the week celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Enchanted Tiki Room with our Lets All Sing Like The Birdies Sing music video! Lots of fun!

      - Sticking with Adventureland, we shared our black and white portraits of the Tiki Drums!!!

      - With all that adventure, by Tuesday we were ready for a we reviewed a terrific drink at The Wave!  I really cant wait for another one...

      - AGH!  I wish we were the ones that got to review the new Starbucks on Main Street USA... but alas, our friend Megan beat us too it. :)

      - Thursday brought these amazing Mad Tea Party attraction posters! Which is your favorite?

      - Finally, our long running Animal Kingdom Artifact series continued on the theme of "protection."

   And lets not forget the amazing work by our friends!

      - Sarah at Eating WDW finally had a chance to visit the new Main Street Bakery / Starbucks!

      - Gorillas Dont Blog shares a few very random instamatic pictures from Disneyland.

      - See?? Even Pop Century has its endearing features! At least according to Estelle from This Happy Place Blog...
      - One of my favorite posts this week! Disney Food Blog looks at the Ten Best Frozen Drinks At Disney World!!!

      - Ryan from Main Street Gazette delves into a minute detail in Dinoland USA... one of my favorite areas in ANY park.

      - Le Parcorama has a fun post of the creepiest Disney park characters! Seriously awesome.

Friday, June 28, 2013

Animal Kingdom Artifacts: Protection

   Over the next few months Disney Hipster Blog will be displaying the "artifacts" located in themed atriums at Animal Kingdom Lodge's Kidani Village! We already looked at Imports... and today we're happy to share another of these fabulous rooms... each of which carries a distinct theme focused on African life.

Art that is believed to help a person's
health and well-being

Mambila Crow Mask
 The Mambila of north Camaroon believe that the ever
alert crow would signal the tribe of any aggressive, negative
force that may be coming. 

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Various Mad Tea Party Poster Art

   The wonderful thing about the Poster Art of Disney Parks book is the perspective and detail that these attraction posters bring.  The fact that these three posters each represent the same attraction in their respective parks, but each one has an entirely different feel to them.
   The US park poster, with the traditionally styled characters and wonderfully ornate borders. This might have been the poster that started my obsession back in the day, though I'm not sure why I kind of think its ugly in regards to most other attraction posters.  Where the Hong Kong poster's gorgeous flat pastel caricatures of Alice and friends portrays the terrific whimsy of the attraction flawlessly.  Perhaps the most odd of the bunch come from Tokyo Disneyland.  A moody and manic piece set right in the scene from the movie.  Just look at the terror in the white rabbit's eyes! Sheesh!

Disney World, John Drury and Greg Paul, 1985 

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Guest Review: Starbucks on Mainstreet USA!

   We are so lucky today!  Good friend of the Disney Hipster Blog (and subsequently, the Disney Hipsters...) Megan Stump (@megadis13) shared us her wonderful review of the new Starbucks on Mainstreet USA! Take it away Megan...

   In January of 2013, the Main Street Bakery in Walt Disney World closed for 6 months to turn into a Starbucks Blasphemy! The World was going to clearly explode due to the product placement that would soon be taking over Main Street USA. Never mind the Edy's sign right next door at the Plaza Ice Cream Parlor. Or Coca-Cola everywhere throughout the resort. While I understood everyone's worries, I just hoped that Disney would know what they were doing. I mean, Disneyland is still standing! So when I heard the Bakery would be reopening on June 18, I decided to check it out-and hoped that my positive attitude would be rewarded.

   My friend Zack and I attempted to rope drop Magic Kingdom thinking Starbucks would be slammed first thing in the morning. While we missed opening (summer traffic sucks), we still got on to Main Street shortly after 9 and first checked out the new signage. Although some of the signs had been up for a few weeks, the windows were new and kept the past in check.

   Inside the Bakery had changed, but I think it was for the better. There are now two lines now instead of having to wait in one long line where people can't make up their mind. Plus they have menus. With pictures! In the middle there is a rack with Starbucks coffee, Via (including an Orange Refresher that they don't serve at any Starbucks I've been to-RUDE) and other merchandise that you would find at Starbucks. Past that is a case with bottle beverages, milk, juices and of course pastries. Once you get to the pastry case, it's up to the registers. This is where the new Bakery wins. 6 cashiers, 3 on each side of the pastry case and then you wait for your items. We got through the line in about 10 minutes-they keep it moving much better than the old Bakery. All your condiments are on a sideboard. My one complaint? No knives. Everyone else's complaint? No seating.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Three Random Disney Videos To Make Your Day Better...

   Sometimes you just need a little pick me up...right?  So enjoy now these three extremely random Disney related youtube videos.  They have nothing in common, but all three made me smile at one point or another.  Now go have a fantastic day! :)

One : Disco Pooh.

Two: Ride through of Tokyo Disneyland's Snow White ride...

Three: This awesome under appreciated song from So Dear To My Heart. 

Under The Florida Moon at The Wave

   Besides a weird fascination with the citrus infusion (found on the Disney standard bar menu...) I'm not all that into mixed drinks.  As a rabid beer fan, I usually feel like cocktails are too frivolous...especially those found at Disney World.  These concoctions are usually far too sweet for my taste, and I normally shy completely away from them.
   In the spirit of good blogging though, my eye was caught by an interesting sounding drink at The Wave. 

    Located on the lobby level of The Contemporary Resort, The Wave is a casual (if not SLIGHTLY more upscale...) restaurant serving new American fare.  The big draw here however, is the   enormous bar and lounge.   Dimly lit and almost cave like, this lounge is the perfect place to sneak away from the Magic Kingdom in the middle of the day and take a break.

   The most enticing thing about The Wave's bar is a very unique drink menu. That is to say, unique to Disney World.  While most bars/lounges serve the same beer, wine, and cocktails, The Wave is given a little wiggle room as they're emphasis is on organic/local/seasonal ingredients.  
   On this recent visit my eye was caught by the Under The Florida Moon cocktail!  Described as 4 Orange vodka, St. Germain Liqueur, agave nectar, orange juice, and topped with Blue Moon.   The fact that this drink included both St. Germain and a beer floater really intrigued me, so I went ahead and ordered it! 

Monday, June 24, 2013

Disney Parks Blog: Meet The Tiki Gods video...

   Disney Parks Blog is traditionally very hit or miss.  I can do without the majority of their original content.  For the most part they do provide lovely vintage pictures, historical "fact sheets", and lots of random interviews.  But in a week long celebration of the Enchanted Tiki Room's 50th anniversary they posted this terrific video of the tiki room pre show at Disneyland.
   I'm so randomly obsessed with this utterly bizarre motley crew of tiki gods with a phenomenal voice cast.  There have been other documentations of the show, but Disney Parks Blog actually did a bang up job putting it together! More stuff like this please...

Adventureland Tiki Drum Portraits...

   Since debuting our Lets All Sing Like The Birdies Sing music video yesterday, I felt sticking to Adventureland for a bit.  And whats more Adventureland than the amazing Adventureland Tiki Drums?!?!  In the past we explored the origin story of the Adventureland tiki drums... heck, one of our first blog posts ever was a "sitcom" about them!
   So, staying within our theme, here are some spooky formal portraits of my favorite Adventureland residents.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Sunday Quickie: Cool Shots From Epcot's Japan

Happy 50th Anniversary! Enchanted Tiki Room...

   We had a really hard time thinking of a way to celebrate the milestone birthday of my favorite attraction The Enchanted Tiki Room. Its incredibly difficult to put into words my affection for this silly bird, we decided to make a video.
   Here is our version of Lets All Sing Like The Birdies Sing...a song thats been a part of the attraction since its debut in 1963.   We love you tiki birds!

   Thanks to Mark (@dibadisney) and Megan (@megadis13) for contributing backup vocals...fantastic contributions by two of our favorite people.   Now go listen to the entire Tiki Birds soundtrack, and have a wonderful, adventure filled day! :)

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Our Disney Vacation, Told Through Vine Videos...

   Social media apps spring up seemingly every day with apparent ease...and disappear just as their about to take hold.   One of the new-ish social media apps, Vine , was embraced whole heartedly by the flourishing Twitter community.  (you do follow us on Twitter, right??)
   Vine allows the user to take videos with a maximum length of six seconds...using your touch screen as a sensitive "tap to activate" shutter.  The fact that these videos are easy to share on Twitter (our social media of choice...where you must already follow us. duh.) make this app quite addictive WHILE AT DISNEY WORLD!!!!!
   Here is our recent Disney World trip told in Vine videos....

   The last clip in this seriously makes me super sad!!! Nothing like going past the WDW entrance gate on your way to the airport. boo.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

The Lobby Art at Art Of Animation...

   Last week we shared our review of the tandoori squash at Landscape of Flavors... and while at the Art of Animation resort we snapped some cool photos in the lobby!  Giant murals comprised of concept art for Disney films flank the walls as you enter the hotel.  Though I have some serious issues with the hotel itself,  these are seriously cool.

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Background and Layout: The Wise Little Hen

   A few weeks ago I shared some wonderful artwork from King Neptune, and before that we looked at the stunning background art from The Jungle Book.  Today, as my infatuation with the Background and Layout book continues, I'm happy to share these images from the 1934 Silly Symphony The Wise Little Hen.
   Not only does The Wise Little Hen mark the first appearance of Donald Duck, but if brings plenty of laughs. Take a moment while watching the film to appreciate the washed out water color backgrounds.  These muted colors are pretty unusual in short cartoons, and are seriously wonderful pieces of artwork.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Walt Disney - Tishman African Art Collection

   Last weekend Adam and I made our once a year trip to Washington DC.  (You might remember some of the cool stuff we found last year.)  We love traversing the city and stopping into museums along the way. (The National Geographic museum has a great pirate exhibit that I wish I could relate to this blog, but sadly cannot.)  One of the highlights of this trip was the Walt Disney - Tishman African Art Collection. 

   Because I wont be able to describe it any better, I'll include the official text from the collection:

In 1959, Paul and Ruth Tishman bought two pieces of art from the Benin kingdom, including an exquisite ivory female figure. Over the next 20 plus years, the Tishmans would build one of the great private collections of African art. Their goal--to acquire works from all the major art traditions in the continent, a dream that would be almost impossible to achieve today.

The majority of the objects the Tishmans collected are from west and central Africa, reflecting the collecting practices of their time. Looking at the collection today, one can focus on questions of history, deliberate the differing approaches to the human ideal or consider the messages of power and status conveyed through form, gesture and material.

Since the mid-1960s, this collection has greatly influenced the study of African art. Through exhibitions and publications, it has helped define African art and set aesthetic standards of quality. 

The Tishmans' desire to share their African art with as many people as possible led to the sale of the collection to the Walt Disney Company in 1984. While the original plan of a permanent exhibition space at Epcot in Florida was never realized, the Walt Disney Company proved to be generous stewards, making the collection available for numerous exhibition loans and publications.

In 2005, Walt Disney World Co., a subsidiary of the Walt Disney Company, gave all 525 objects in the Walt Disney-Tishman African Art Collection to the National Museum of African Art, Smithsonian Institution. This exhibition and the publication African Vision: The Walt DisneyƐTishman Collection continue the tradition, begun by Paul and Ruth Tishman and maintained by the Walt Disney Company, of sharing this great African art with the world. 

 possibly Efik people, lower cross region, Calabar area, Nigeria
Early 20th century
Wood, skin, plant fiber, bone, dye

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Disney Blog Roundup: 6/14/13

I'm currently quite obsessed with this picture...

   We had a fun, albeit slow week over here at Disney Hipster Blog...

      - Guest blogger Mark Diba (@dibadisney on twitter...) wrote a terrific review of the new ice cream shop in France!
      - Then, I made this fun video featuring TriceraTop Spin! Yay! Kiddie rides!
      - We finished the week off reviewing a vegetarian dish at Landscape of Flavors! Remarkably yummy indeed!

   And now...what our friends have been up to!

      - Perennial favorite vintage photo blog, Gorillas Don't Blog shares some gorgeous Disneyland Instamatics!  Seriously awesome.

      - Mouse On The Mind continued a fun series called Imagineering Awesome... my favorite of which is a Magic Kingdom Sleep Hollow expansion! So great!

      - Disney By Mark is helping to perpetuate the Hollywood Studios expansion rumors... lets all cross our fingers! :)

      - Some beer love via Eating WDW, who got to enjoy the Bear Republic 5 IPA on a recent visit to Epcot.  I could always use one of these...

      - Breaking away from her usual food reviews, Disney Food Blog asks, "what disney restaurant do you want in your kitchen?" so much fun!!!

Friday, June 14, 2013

Tandoori Acorn Squash at Landscape of Flavors

   On a recent trip to Walt Disney World, Adam and I found ourselves quite hungry.  We weren't  in a theme park, and also didn't have any dining reservations.  A quick brainstorm led to Adam's idea of checking out the newish Art of Animation Resort and its counter service restaurant Landscape of Flavors.

   Walking into Art Of Animation we had the interesting and unusual sense that we may have accidentally arrived at close cousin Pop Century. The two resorts are strikingly similar, with AoA getting the slight edge, probably because its significantly more recent construction.
   Landscape of Flavors is no exception.  Besides subtle theming Landscape of Flavors and Pop Century's counter service restaurant are almost identical.  Luckily, the food at LoF is much more varied, especially considering it being located at a value resort.

   The ordering process is one that you might be familiar with.  Choose a 'bay' (that is Cosmic Ray Starlight Cafe talk...) that prepares the food that you would like to enjoy, collect your food from said 'bay' and pay at the centrally located registers.  There are several different bays, and surely everyone in your party can find something to their liking.  A big plus at this restaurant is that there are several options for vegetarians, a happy surprise for us upon arrival.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

In Love With TriceraTop Spin!

   You wanna know something?  I love Chester And Hesters Dino-Rama, and I'm not ashamed to say it.  Along with the rest of Dinoland it comprises one of my favorite areas in any Disney park.  The theming is corny, lout, obnoxious, and totally cheap looking...which is EXACTLY what it should be!  I mean, have you ever seen a "nice" roadside attraction?  Me neither...

   In the past we have shown some serious love for Primeval Whirl, but for one reason or another we usually leave poor TriceraTop Spin out of the love fest!  But seriously, this kiddie ride has FLYING TRICERATOPS!!!!!  Sure, it makes a lot more sense to have say pterodactyls flying around...but no!  Here we have rotund quadrupeds circling in majestic flight...
   Here is a fun ride through video that I compiled and put together with Hester's ride spiel and music...

   How do YOU feel about TriceraTop Spin and the rest of Dinoland USA? Does it fit in with the exotic theming of Disney's Animal Kingdom?  Let us know! Join the conversation! Follow us on Twitter ... or 'like' us on Facebook! 

Monday, June 10, 2013

Review: L'Artisan des Glaces Ice Cream Shop

   We are so happy to welcome back our favorite roving reporter, Mark Diba! (aka the Dibster... or @dibadisney on twitter!)  Mark had the pleasure of visiting the latest edition to Epcot's France pavilion! 

   Do you remember the disgusting bakery that used to be in the France Pavilion at World Showcase? It was always crowded for no good reason, and I never really understood why. When it closed earlier this year, I was not optimistic about their plans to turn this space into an ice cream shop. I just assumed they would do the bare minimum and sell poor-quality ice cream at jacked-up prices, since guests would buy it no matter what. After visiting the ice cream shop this weekend, I am delighted to report that I was wrong!

The sign for L'Artisan des Glaces reflects the design of 
the ice cream shop's interior: simple but cute.

   One of my issues with the old bakery was that it felt incredibly claustrophobic inside. Guests were crammed into a central aisle, while display cases lined both sides of the bakery. Thankfully, L'Artisan des Glaces does away with this terrible design. Now only one side of the shop is dedicated to ice cream, so guests aren't packed together. A large window lets in lots of light. The pastel color scheme inside is greatly enhanced with all that wonderful light.  

The old French bakery had this same window, except they had decided to line
 the interior with fake baguettes, which blocked out most of the light.

Friday, June 7, 2013

Animal Kingdom Artifact: Imports

  One of my favorite things about staying at Animal Kingdom Lodge is the amazing African artwork that takes over every conceivable corner of the massive hotel.  I am extremely familiar with the artwork/artifacts at Jambo House, but I was much less intimately familiar with the other side of the resort. On our recent trip I was pleased to discover that the artifacts at Kidani Village are just as stunning than at Jambo just have to poke around a little more.
   Like Jambo House, Kidani Village has atriums located on each floor.  Each of these atriums are full of artwork and each one has a different theme. Over the next couple months I'll be looking at some of the Kidani Village atriums...

art that illustrates the influence that
foreigners have had on Africa

Luba Colonial Figure
This welcome figure depicting a colonial officer
was placed at the entrance of a hotel in Lumumbashi,
Democratic Republic of Congo circa 1940's

close up of the figure... 

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Vegetarian Lunch At Wilderness Lodge's Whispering Canyon Cafe

   Tucked away in the woods near the Magic Kingdom is Wilderness Lodge. An resort so epic in stature that it rivals my beloved Animal Kingdom Lodge in theming and grandiosity.  In fact, both resorts share the same architect in the late Peter Dominick.
   A wonderful foil to the enormous lobby is Whispering Canyon Cafe, a low key table service restaurant located just beyond the entrance to the resort.  Whispering Canyon promotes its food as "hearty western fare." But I think a more apt description would be new American cuisine with an old west spin.  The restaurant itself is pretty informal, especially when compared to the resorts other sit down restaurant, Artists Point. In fact, children are encouraged to dine here...and will have a blast considering the notorious wait staff interactions.

   This past May we were super excited to eat here, considering we had made (and broken...) reservations several trips in a row.  This random afternoon we found ourselves with nothing substantial to do, and quite hungry...and quickly settled on Whispering Canyon. Though we didn't have a reservation we were seated in short order.
   We had spent the morning traipsing around Epcot and were getting quite hungry.  We eagerly ordered  the flash fried navajo bread, which is served with citrus honey and tomato jam.  The "bread" in this appetizer has the consistency of a wonton wrapper, and somehow managed to be chewy and crispy at the same a good way! The salty bread is completely drenched in honey, which adds a phenomenal depth to the dish. The tomato jam is essentially boiled down tomato paste, and uneventful in any case.   Maybe my stomach isn't as big as most people, but this is an enormous portion and filled both Adam and myself up pretty quickly.

flash fried navajo bread with citrus honey and tomato jam...

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Background & Layout: King Neptune's Mermaids

   Disney has a storied history with under the sea themes between The Little Mermaid, and Bedknobs And Broomsticks. Long before either of those was King Neptune.  This colorful 1932 Silly Symphony is full of action, slapstick, and gorgeous underwater scenes. In fact, scenes from King Neptune went on to inspire The Little Mermaid.   Here is an interesting section from the Background & Layout book that I'm so fond of.

Monday, June 3, 2013

Animal Kingdom Lodge Kidani Village: The Music.

   Over the course of our ten day stay at Kidani Village (the smaller, cozier sister to Jambo House) I started to fall in love.  Sure, there is no counter service.  Sure, the bathrooms don't have two sinks.  But for everything Kidani Village doesn't have it totally over compensates in charm.
   Among the charming aspects of this overlooked and under appreciated resort is the phenomenal music loop that accompanies it.  Playing on a constant loop in the lobby and Sanaa levels, this loop is full of lively African music, with some Indian flair thrown in for good measure. (There is in fact a LOT of Indian influence on the musical traditions of southern Africa...)  The loop does have a melancholy feel at times, that is less present on the Jambo House loop. You can also here this loop around the gym and pool during most of the day.
   I spent a lot of time wandering around the resort (Safari Amber in hand...) collecting the songs that comprise this loop.  I hope you enjoy it as much as I do...

   If you enjoyed this music loop, please take a moment to subscribe to our Youtube page...where we have a lot of other fun projects lined up as well. 

Saturday, June 1, 2013

Disney Blog Roundup: 6/1/13


   Nescafe Watch 2013 continues at Disney Hipster Headquarters.  While we DID get to enjoy that "coffee-esque" beverage on our last trip...who knows how long it will be available at WDW!  If you have any "Nescafe sightings" at Disney World, please keep us up to date! :)

    Last week on Disney Hipster Blog:

      - We started the week by recapping our monorail bar crawl! SO MUCH FUN!!!
      - Then took a look at the new Mickey meet and greet at Animal Kingdom!
      - And maybe the best dollar I've ever spent on a really bad Orlando guide book.

   And now on to the good stuff:

      - Passport To Dreams finished their AMAZING two parter about the origins of the Country Bear Jamboree! Seriously, do yourself the favor and read this. 

      - At least Sarah at Eating WDW enjoyed her breakfast/lunch at Tusker House... kind of. Maybe one day we will give it another shot. 

      - Gorillas Dont Blog shares some awesome un-rejected Disneyland instamatics pics.

      - Estelle at This Happy Place Blog revisits the Magic Kingdom's Crystal Palace after a ten year hiatus!

      -  A great review of the new Disneyland show "Mickey and the Magical Map" over on Mouse Troop!