Today Café, Universal Orlando offers a taste of New York to its neck of the woods


Universal Orlando invites guests to get a taste of one-of-a-kind foodie experience at the Today Café. Are you hungry for this culinary adventure?

Just inside the Universal Orlando gates, the Today Café will welcome guests to its version of Studio 1A. With the theme park’s commitment to creating fully immersive experiences, this newest dining location appeals to a wide audience. Foodies, families and fun adventurers will be lining up to taste these enticing menu items.

For many people, their day starts with the Today Show. Whether it is an opportunity to catch-up on the latest headlines, see their favorite personalities or be tempted with delicious recipes, the Today Show is a part of many people’s lives. At this new Universal experience, guests can feel as if they are being welcomed into that television world, just like they welcome the Today Show into their homes.

While the ambiance is reminiscent of Studio 1A, the real reason why people will flock to the Today Café will be the food. From breakfast to sandwiches to over the top desserts, this eatery will become one of Universal Orlando’s top dining options.

Recently, Universal Orlando focused on elevating its dining options. From seasonal specialty treats to themed food events, these food choices aren’t boring theme park fare. Today’s theme park guest demands more and Universal is delivering. From flexitarian options to food trends, Universal finds a way to make its dining options approachable for its audience.

At a recent media event, Universal Orlando unveiled its menu for the newest dining experience. Overall, the menu features tremendous variety. From New York influenced dishes to food trends, this menu will allow guests to expand their tastes while still appealing to wide audience.

Since Studio 1A is located in the heart of Manhattan, several of the menu items have a nod to New York favorites. From a pastrami on rye to a Mulberry Street Italian Platter, these classic New York dishes offer a glimpse into a real New York deli.

Al Roker’s Avocado Toast at Today Café, Universal Orlando, photo by Cristine Struble

For people who want to embrace food trends, the first must have dish is Al Roker’s Avocado Toast. Unlike other versions of avocado toast, this recipe has a secret ingredient, bread and butter pickles. While some people might be skeptical, the crunch and the slightly sweet/savory note adds a depth of flavor. It is a big punch of umami that will have you adding pickles to your avocado toast going forward.

The avocado toast is the first collaborative menu item with Al Roker. Periodically, Roker will be contributing a particular dish to the restaurant’s menu. While it isn’t known if that infamous Sweet Potato dessert will be a holiday addition, these special menu items will definitely bring in guests.

Additionally, the special menu items will keep the menu fresh for returning guests. While many season pass holders have their favorite theme park treats, new offerings are always a popular choice. It keeps foodies engaged and talking about their most recent visit to the theme park.

Some of the menu focuses on lighter, breakfast fare. Options like the Organic Acai Bowl is filling yet refreshing on a hot Florida day. Truthfully, this item is a lovely healthy option as opposed to an ice cream cone.

Cream puff with Earl Grey and Lavender Pastry cream, paired with locally roasted Today Cafe coffee, photo provided by Cristine Struble

While the Today Café does offer numerous healthy and vegan options, the most tempting menu items are the pastries. A glimpse at the display case will make anyone forget the calories and will entice them to order at least two of these scrumptious choices.

After sampling numerous choices from the display, a few items are a definitely must order. First, the cream puff with Earl Grey and Lavender pastry cream is divine. The cream puff has a crunchy topping (Choux au Craquelin) which adds just the right amount of texture to this pastry. A luscious pastry cream with nuanced flavors had me wanting to scoop up every last bite.

Another tempting treat was the filled vegan croissant. Having never had a vegan croissant, I was slightly skeptical about the potential texture. After talking to head Chef Steven Jayson, he explained that the croissant is actually flakier than a traditional butter croissant.

With one bite, I was completely convinced by Chef Jayson’s assertion. While the delicate layers enveloped the filling, the flakiness of the outer layer was the star. It added the right crunch to the bite which instantly enhanced the enjoyment.

These croissants would be a delicious option for breakfast or a mid-afternoon treat. Whether you pair them with the special Today Show blend coffee (locally roasted specifically for the cafe) or prefer to sip on a lovely rose with the pastry, it is a must try.

Overall, the menu is quite diverse and the restaurant should quickly become a popular choice for many Universal guests. Based on this opening, Universal Orlando is forwarding the food conversation in the right direction.

The Today Café opens at Universal Studios Orlando on May 16. The restaurant offers an array of breakfast sandwiches, salads, sandwiches and pastries.

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Are you ready for Universal Orlando’s newest dining experience? The Today Café and its delectable menu is ready for you.