Dining Reviews

Paradiso 37 at Walt Disney World’s Disney Springs Offers Unique Flavors for Cinco de Mayo (or Anytime)

Hi everyone!

We were invited to Paradiso 37 at Disney Springs (formerly Downtown Disney) to taste a variety of items from their menu in anticipation of Cinco de Mayo. Everything we tried – and it ended up being many more items than the sampling menu listed – is available every day at the restaurant, but there is a special dish (snapper) and a mariachi band playing for Cinco de Mayo.

It had been a number of years since I’ve been to Paradiso 37, and I was very pleasantly surprised at the food. The restaurant was quite lively as our evening ended, with most tables filled. Here is a look at the restaurant and food we tried.

Paradiso 37 opened in 2009 in what used to be the Pleasure Island section of Downtown Disney, now The Landing section of Disney Springs. The website says of the restaurant, “Having spent years traveling the various regions of the Americas, our chefs have assembled a unique collection of their favorite dishes representing the diverse, cultural and culinary differences found throughout North, Central and South America.” The 37 stands for 37 countries of the Americas.

There are some seats outside (here they are under cover).

Our table included this view, which made for a wonderful sunset location.

We started with fresh House-Made Salsa and House-Made Guacamole with Tortilla Chips. These starters were a good beginning to the meal, the salsa didn’t have too much of a kick (which was better for me, I don’t like hot salsa).

Here is a closer look at the guacomole, which includes avacado, tomato, lime, cilantro, and serrano pepper.

While waiting for more food to arrive, I took a walk around the restaurant. There are two different bars, one on the first level and one that is up a little on another level. One is a tequila bar with over 50 kinds of tequila! There are also servers with beverage carts who make drinks tableside.

We’d arrived at 6:00 p.m. and left closer to 9:00 p.m. The bars and restaurant got busier as the evening progressed.

This artwork features a list of the countries that make up the inspiration for Paradiso 37.

The roosters and hens sign for the restrooms is fun.

Back to the food, first up is the Shrimp Ceviche. It includes fire-roasted shrimp, tomatillo, lime, avocado, cucumbers, tomato, onion, and tortilla chips. This was a favorite at our table.

We had the option of several drinks. The Sangria Margarita is what almost everyone ordered, including myself. Mine seemed to have more margarita, less sangria (I even tried swirling it). I like both margarita and sangria, so this was a good drink for me – generously sized.

P37 Nachos with corn tortilla, chile con carne, cheese sauce, cheese, lettuce, sour cream, and jalapenos. This is a solid choice for a starter, but you may want several people to share it – the actual portion size was pretty big.

This was one of the big winners at the table, the South American Crazy Corn. It includes fire roasted corn on the cob, aji amarillo, and P37 cheese. I made mine less crazy and took the cheese off. The corn flavor is excellent, and everyone else enjoyed theirs with the cheese.

Here is a closer look at the Crazy Corn.

Below to the left is the Baja Fish Tacos. I don’t eat seafood, but this dish is the most popular one at Paradiso 37 and includes crispy seasonal white fish, cabbage slaw, corn salsa, cilantro-lime crema, and tortilla salad. To the right was the Beef Quesadilla entree (there was also a chicken version for us to try).

Here is anther view of the Baja Fish Tacos.

This is the South Carolina-Style BBQ Pork Ribs with slow roasted ribs, tangy bbq sauce, cabbage slaw, and fries.

My favorite item of the meal was the 10-oz Argentinian Skirt Steak Angus with carmelized onions and chimichurri. Skirt steak is not a forgiving steak when cooking, often coming out too tough (I don’t order it in restaurants for the most part). This was much more tender than many skirt steaks I have tried, and was not overseasoned.

There are a number of different burgers. I did not try this one, this appears to be the Jalapeno Burger with cheddar cheese.

Dessert arrived, and our sampling menu mentioned the Churros but nothing else. Instead, 4 different items arrived to sample from.

The Tres Leches cake was tasty though not remarkable, but is a dessert I’d order. It includes a coconut milk soaked white cake layered with fresh strawberry mousse and topped with toasted meringue and fresh strawberries.

This is a Pineapple Upside Down Cake, a warm carmelized pineapple cake served with warm caramel sauce and topped with vanilla ice cream. I didn’t try this one, though it looks delicious.

The Churros are pretty standard, cinnamon and sugar dusted with caramel and chocolate dipping sauces.

This was my favorite of the desserts I tried, the Paradiso Chocolate Stack. We were told that this is gluten free. Chocolate cake layered with creamy chocolate mousse, served with warm caramel sauce and topped with vanilla ice cream. Excellent and dense.

The sunset was gorgeous, I think I went outside for this shot – there are outdoor tables with a beautiful view of Village Lake.

By the time we left, there weren’t many tables left. I definitely recommend making reservations.

Paradiso 37 is a terrific location for Cinco de Mayo or just a meal out at anytime! The restaurant is open from 11 a.m. through 2 a.m. daily.