Food & Beverage 2021

GaryH

TS Member
As far as I remember the restaurant on towers street was always packed and very busy every time I visited
 

JAperson

TS Member
What about a round the world buffet restaurant with a counter for takeaway. They could serve chinese, italian and any other food they wanted? not sure where they'd put it though.
 

jon81uk

TS Member
Those would've been handy... Had it not been chucking it down with rain. :p;)

Do any UK theme parks provide indoor picnic facilities?

I can't think of many places at all that do really, generally indoor or covered areas are for those who bought food at the venue. I think some places do offer indoor or covered picnic spaces for school groups to have packed lunches, but I don't think they are always open generally.
 

Skyscraper

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Nemesis
Do any UK theme parks provide indoor picnic facilities?

I can't think of many places at all that do really, generally indoor or covered areas are for those who bought food at the venue. I think some places do offer indoor or covered picnic spaces for school groups to have packed lunches, but I don't think they are always open generally.
Towers have a covered picnic area in Muitiny Bay (which I referenced a couple of posts back) which I've used on quite a few of my visits. An additional one in another area of the park would be good though.
 

jon81uk

TS Member
Towers have a covered picnic area in Muitiny Bay (which I referenced a couple of posts back) which I've used on quite a few of my visits. An additional one in another area of the park would be good though.

Although when the courtyard BBQ was open the covered area was reserved for those ordering food from the BBQ, it wasn't a picnic area. In fact 10 years ago I don't think there was really any picnic benches intended for those who brought their own food at all.

The official FAQ only suggests that there are benches available around the park, or you can sit and watch Big Fun Showtime with a picnic
https://support.altontowers.com/hc/...ur-own-food-picnic-in-to-Alton-Towers-Resort-
 

AT86

TS Member
Yep the Courtyard in Mutiny Bay became a picnic area by accident really when they closed the BBQ in 2016 and just left the seating.

Compared to previous years the seating for those bringing their own food is significantly better.
 

MylesHSG

TS Member
Do any UK theme parks provide indoor picnic facilities?/QUOTE]
Do any UK theme parks provide indoor picnic facilities?

I can't think of many places at all that do really, generally indoor or covered areas are for those who bought food at the venue. I think some places do offer indoor or covered picnic spaces for school groups to have packed lunches, but I don't think they are always open generally.

There is a large covered area with tables and chairs at Thorpe. Right at the back (or is it the front) past the flat rides and near the path that goes the back way to SAW.
 

jon81uk

TS Member
There is a large covered area with tables and chairs at Thorpe. Right at the back (or is it the front) past the flat rides and near the path that goes the back way to SAW.

That's also new this year for the pandemic.
I think it started as just picnic tables like the lawn at AT and then they added cover for shade/rain.

Although they used to have some seating in the centre of the dome.

Also Thorpe is slightly better for indoor fast food I think, KFC and burger king both have decently sized indoor seating areas.
 

AstroDan

TS Team
Favourite Ride
Steel Vengeance, Cedar Point
Let's not beat about the bush here.

The management at Alton Towers just don't prioritise food in the theme park. For whatever reason, unlike major parks around the globe - they just don't see it is as important. You can get a half decent steak at Woodcutters, sure, and the odd dish at RCR is decent - but nothing at the resort is really memorable, and they certainly don't promote 'gastronomy' on the website. Even the events at the park basically just involve bought in mass-market street food vendors, and even the quality of that isn't really as good as you'd hope.

Things may change one day, but the head of F&B at Alton Towers (theme park) has been static for some years and I just don't think the top table at the resort are really that arsed. Trends in food and beverage occasionally trickle into the resort, but usually 5-10 years after the high street and often nowhere near the same quality level.

Over at the resort it's perhaps a little better, but even then - it's a hotchpotch of quality and service instability.

The above has been the case forever, pretty much. It's just how it is.
 

s_g_k

TS Member
I visited yesterday and the biggest disappointment was the complete lack of capacity of indoor seated F&B. All seated restaurants had massive queues - some pushing 45 minutes and on a peak day where you’re going to be spending most of your day queuing, it’s just not fair to then make people wait for a seated meal. We ended up paying £25 for a hog roast baguette, a hog roast bap and a portion of fries and ate them (after waiting a while for a seat) in the Welcom-Inn courtyard on a pretty filthy table. Queues for the bar were horrendous as well. More high capacity indoor seated eating places and more covered seating areas are urgently needed.
 

WillPS

TS Member
I visited yesterday and the biggest disappointment was the complete lack of capacity of indoor seated F&B. All seated restaurants had massive queues - some pushing 45 minutes and on a peak day where you’re going to be spending most of your day queuing, it’s just not fair to then make people wait for a seated meal. We ended up paying £25 for a hog roast baguette, a hog roast bap and a portion of fries and ate them (after waiting a while for a seat) in the Welcom-Inn courtyard on a pretty filthy table. Queues for the bar were horrendous as well. More high capacity indoor seated eating places and more covered seating areas are urgently needed.
The park isn't built to deal with crowds like the fireworks bring in. It was barely able to cope with the Covid-limited capacities.

The issue with creating seated capacity is that the payback for that would only come on days like fireworks. My only advice for anyone attending on fireworks nights would be to opt out of catering altogether, or have a big breakfast before you arrive and a big meal late afternoon while its quiet.
 

s_g_k

TS Member
The park isn't built to deal with crowds like the fireworks bring in. It was barely able to cope with the Covid-limited capacities.

The issue with creating seated capacity is that the payback for that would only come on days like fireworks. My only advice for anyone attending on fireworks nights would be to opt out of catering altogether, or have a big breakfast before you arrive and a big meal late afternoon while its quiet.
They could always close the additional restaurants during off peak times and only open them on peak days. We tried the approach of waiting until late afternoon but queues for the restaurants were relentless all day
 
That’s 1 thing I’m surprised that they still offer KFC and Burger King at Thorpe Park and not at Alton Towers as I thought back in the day they were better priced and tasted as good as the high street shops.
 

Skyscraper

TS Member
Favourite Ride
Nemesis
That’s 1 thing I’m surprised that they still offer KFC and Burger King at Thorpe Park and not at Alton Towers as I thought back in the day they were better priced and tasted as good as the high street shops.
Towers did offer Burger King and KFC, but now those restaurants are Burger Kitchen and Just Chicken respectively.
 

Squiggs

TS Team
The park isn't built to deal with crowds like the fireworks bring in. It was barely able to cope with the Covid-limited capacities.

The park is definately built for these sorts of crowds, it's just not run to cope with them.

F&B is a really good example of where the park has the infrastructure but chooses not to use it. They have slowly started whittling away the shuttered restaurants with the recent-ish removal of the Mexican Cantina and Wobble World Cafe. But they still have two of the largest F&B units in the park mothballed, as well as four mid-sized units either closed or significantly under utilised.

Not to metion the arrival Refresh and Refill, which reduced capacity at several restaurants as well as removing smaller units like Katnaga Kabin.

With a bit of a deep clean and a lick of paint or two (and some imaginative menu options), a whole heap of F&B capcity issues could be swept away.
 

BarryZola

TS Member
On ridiculously busy days just take your own food or expect to wait to get what you want. It's pretty simple. They're not going to build an extra couple of restaurants just for a couple of weeks worth of busy days then have them lay empty for 98% of the season. This is the real world. Accept it for what it is and decide how you're going to deal with the situation.
 

s_g_k

TS Member
On ridiculously busy days just take your own food or expect to wait to get what you want. It's pretty simple. They're not going to build an extra couple of restaurants just for a couple of weeks worth of busy days then have them lay empty for 98% of the season. This is the real world. Accept it for what it is and decide how you're going to deal with the situation.
But they won’t need to build anything. All of the infrastructure is there, and there was clearly a demand for them all otherwise they wouldn’t have been built in the first place.

There are lots of people who don’t want to eat a squashed and sweaty egg sandwich that’s been at the bottom of a rucksack whilst sat on a damp rock.
 
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