Seven of the Best Places to Get Cocktails at the Disneyland Resort

Updated July 18, 2019

It’s the age old question: Where do I find some sort of liquid remedy to tolerate these screaming children?

Well, maybe not an age old question, but one that is asked of me enough times to write a post about it.

I’ve done the research, friends. And, I went to LSU, so I’m overqualified for this post. Follow me to find where to escape the Disneyland madness for an adult beverage, with or without children in tow:

Inside Disneyland

Oga’s Cantina – Star Wars fans will love this place. Be sure to make a reservation!

Totally worth the effort made to get in. This post tells you how.

Inside California Adventure

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Carthay Circle Lounge – This bar boasts “drink specific ice” per cocktail. Only Disney could deliver that, right?

I recommend this stop for those who want old Hollywood glamour in a fabulous setting and who don’t mind paying a premium for their libations. It’s awesome. My only issue with it? It’s pretty much a dead zone for your cell phone. That can be good or bad, depending on your company.

***Kids are allowed if you’re at a table setting.

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Alfresco Tasting Terrace – This part of California Adventure will feel confusing to you because there are about 12 names for this area, be it tasting wine, tasting beer, eating dinner, having snacks, etc. Regardless, I encourage you to try it out.

Adjacent to it, and just below, is a walk-up option for wine where you can grab a glass and sit above the crowds heading into the best of California Adventure. It’s also a great place to watch the parade.

***Kids are allowed if you’re at a table setting.

Within Downtown Disney

CatalI absolutely love the bar upstairs at Catal. And you can’t beat their happy hour. From 3-5pm every day of the week, find $9 cocktails, beer and wine plus well priced small plates.

And………you can now purchase bottles of wine and pitchers of sangria for half price during happy hour on Wednesdays! This link shares the wines available for this promotion on Wednesdays. Check out the happy hour menu:

Find a seat at the bar, at the lovely settees and chairs in the dining room, or outside on the patio for some great people watching.

***Kids are allowed anyplace but at the bar.

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Ralph Brennan’s Jazz Kitchen – This will be your prettiest option in Downtown Disney, as only Louisiana folks know how to properly dress a balcony.

Go here for good drinks and a nice seat over the busyness of Downtown Disney and good food, too. The boudin is my favorite, by far. This restaurant can be found to the left, several stops in as you walk through Downtown Disney.

***Kids are allowed.

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Hearthstone Lounge – Located in the Grand Californian Hotel, this is an old favorite place for solace from the crowds and during my weekly visits, you might find me here in the late afternoon.

The wait staff is fantastic, the drinks are as well, and they serve little dishes of bar-type chex-mix (free of charge) that is good for nibbling while you’re taking a break. While you’re in this setting, take it all in and look up at the paintings on the wall. This was made to mimic a “men’s lounge”, however, all the paintings are of women, which – from my tour on the property – suggest the women are actually still there watching over their men, as smart women do.

Also, every piece of wood in this lounge (except for furniture) was made from one single tree that Disney bid on when it fell in northern California. The shades are different due to stains, but look at the wood grain. It all works together.  You can learn more about the architecture and creation of the Grand Californian Hotel during the Art of Craft Tour, which is free of charge and happens at 1pm every day.

***Kids are allowed.

At the Disneyland Hotel

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Trader Sam’s Enchanted Tiki Bar – Once known as only a secret, local favorite, this spot was an annual passholder’s dream. Now, pesky tourists with their knowledge from annoying websites (like mine) gravitate toward it, occupying seats and paying for drinks.

HOW DARE THEY.

Here’s the deal: If you want to go to this bar, go during the off hours. 2pm or maybe 8pm could work. Otherwise, you’re going to wait or not find a seat at all. Or, you’ll have to sit outside, which is lovely if it’s not super hot outside.

Located just outside The Disneyland Hotel, this place is known for its fun drinks and fantastic bar staff (who still holds court), but it’s crowded. Be ready to wait if you don’t get there in time to get a table.

***Kids are allowed until 7pm. Then, the party really starts.

Other Stuff

There are many other options for drinks and you can find other suggestions in my post about how to have a Date at Disneyland.

You may also review my post on Downtown Disney for more info on the district and what else is available.

And, while I encourage Disneyland to be a communal event – a pre-determined obligation if you will – I do insist on everyone being happy during whatever arrangements you have made.

So, if people are unhappy, allow them (or yourself) to check out this post for even more options on what to do when you can’t stand Disneyland another day.

It’s OK. I understand. I’ve cried at Disneyland, too.

Take a look at how Get Away Today can help with your vacation

9 COMMENTS

  1. Ah rats, you gave away Trader Sam’s! LOL! it’s ok, I forgive you. It is crazy popular these days. I remember when it opened back in 2012 and it was empty all the time. Now we have to go right when it opens to get lunch and just relax. It totally is a passholder’s dream, an escape if you will. I never miss a visit to Trader Sam’s when we are at Disneyland. I even collect the Tiki Mugs. I have them all except a few Mahaloween ones. =)

  2. These are great reviews, you’re spot on about Trader Sams too!

    How about the bar in front of Steakhouse 55? Or what is that? Is that like a waiting area like Carthay Lounge is to Carthay Circle Restaurant?

  3. “Or, you’ll have to sit outside, which is lovely if you’re not in the summer of 2015-2019.”

    I did it. I sat outside in July. And I thought it felt great. BUT I live in Phoenix and I think every day in Southern California is at least a LITTLE cold. 🙂

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