The Ale and Compass, which replaced the Captain’s Grille, is located at Disney’s Yacht Club. It’s a short walk from Epcot’s International Gateway, or a short boat ride on the Friendship boats from Epcot and Hollywood Studios. The Yacht Club has an upscale nautical theme. I have to admit that it’s not my favorite Epcot area resort. Probably because I live in Florida and I’ve grown too accustomed to the nautical theme, and when I go to Disney I want to be transported away from the real world.
We went to the Ale and Compass to experience some vegan and vegetarian dishes they serve up for lunch. Despite almost alway being available on My Disney Experience app, the location was more popular than I was expecting. I’m not sure if it is usually that busy, but it wouldn’t hurt to make a reservation if you’d like to dine here. There’s a nice lounge area if you have to wait for a table. The decor was primarily on a navy blue and gray palette. It reminded me a bit of Restoration Hardware. It didn’t feel “Disney” but it was pleasant and comfortable.
We started off by ordering the buffalo cauliflower. It was served in a steaming hot skillet and came with ranch dipping sauce. This appetizer was AMAZING! The cauliflower was soft, but not too overcooked and buffalo sauce had a great kick and flavor to it. I seriously could have eaten two orders of this on my own. I’m pretty sure this could be vegan if ordered without the ranch. I only asked if it was vegetarian, so I’m not sure if any dairy went into preparing the cauliflower.
Next, we tried the vegan protein bowl. This was huge and way too much for one of us to eat on our own. No joke, we only ate half of it and still didn’t need a snack until about seven hours after lunch. I could see this being a great post-workout lunch. The bowl came with Italian vegan sausage, potatoes, quinoa, and broccoli rabe. Overall, it was satisfying and I appreciate having a creative food option. I only wished the sausage was replaced with tofu or black bean cakes. The Italian sausage seemed a little out of place with the rest of the flavors. Vegans looking for something not so daunting to eat can get a vegan cheese burger too.
Finally, we tried something more classic for those vegetarians who don’t want to get too adventurous. We had the grilled cheese sandwich and tomato soup. This sandwich came with aged white cheddar, gruyere, and truffle butter. The tomato soup was more like a thick marinara dipping sauce for the grilled cheese. All the flavors came together nicely. It was yummy and satisfying, but I’m not sure it warrants a repeat visit.
Overall, the Ale and Compass has some great options for vegans and vegetarians who are more adventurous and those who would like a comfort food. I would highly recommend a trip here. It’s a great refuge if Epcot or Hollywood Studios are too busy and you want a break from the crowds. The winner here was definitely the buffalo cauliflower. I will be returning for two orders of it next time!