This children’s menu from the opening-day Disneyland restaurant, the Red Wagon Inn, features five different food choices, each themed to a different Walt Disney animated character.
The menu, doubling as a place mat for young diners, is fronted by the Red Wagon Inn’s recognizable logo, while the back includes the standard menu text coupled with corresponding drawings of the characters.
The options on this “Menu for Young Americans,” which range in price from $.95 – $1.25, include the following entrees, paired with the guest’s choice of dessert (Ice Cream, Sherbet, or Jell-O) and beverage (Milk, Chocolate Milk, or Buttermilk):
Roast Turkey, Potatoes, Vegetable
LADY and the TRAMP
Spaghetti and Meat Ball, Roll and Butter
Halibut Steak, Potatoes, Vegetable
Hot Dog on a Bun, Potatoes Vegetable
Chopped Sirloin Patty, Potatoes, Vegetable, Roll
The Red Wagon Inn, located on Main Street, U.S.A., had the distinction of being Disneyland’s largest restaurant upon the park’s opening, as well as the only location where a guest could get a full-course meal. It remained in operation for a full decade afterwards. It was said to be Walt’s personal favorite, and even contained a private dining room and bar, nicknamed the “Hideaway” (also sometimes called the “Hideout”), where he entertained special guests. Although unofficially, it was the only place in Disneyland for many years to serve alcohol. Lillian Disney is credited for the original building’s interior design, an elegant, turn-of-the-century aesthetic. In 1965, the restaurant’s lessee agreement with Swift Premium Foods ended and the eatery was refurbished and re-branded as the Plaza Inn. Swift also operated two additional opening-day restaurants: Main Street’s Market House and Frontierland’s Chicken Plantation House.
This memento from Walt’s favorite Disneyland restaurant offers a fun look back at the park’s dining options for young guests in the first year of operation, while paying tribute to the now-extinct Main Street establishment.