Months of teasing, weeks of listening to a wonder-filled child’s voice hype you up on the radio, days of watching Hogwarts rise before you in commercials, and hours of desperately wishing you could just. Be. There. Already.
Well, witches and wizards whose letters are simply a little late–the waiting’s over. Wizarding World Hollywood is here, the gates spread wide and open for all guests to wander and enjoy. Don your robes, ready your wand, and brush up on your spellwork for a real-life Hogwarts adventure. We won’t lie, though, it’s an overwhelming (in an omg-this-is-so-unbelievably-magic-I’m-really-at-Hogwarts kind of way) experience, so a bit of research beforehand is certainly not remiss.
Fear not, witches, wizards, muggles, and cleverly disguised Boggarts! We’re happy to
flail wildly about the majesty that is Wizarding World Hollywood share our first-hand knowledge with any and all who seek to learn.
For the ultimate place to start, visit wizardingworldhollywood.com for a full virtual tour of the grounds, information on the two attractions, and a really cute Marauder-map version of the park. Once you’re ready to get up close and personal with all of the amazing aspects the park offers, crack open up the first edition of “A Muggle’s Guide to the Wizarding World in Hollywood.”
Eating at The Three Broomsticks
The Three Broomsticks? That’s the first chapter? Are you sure you wouldn’t rather talk about, oh I don’t know, the thrilling, groundbreaking rollercoaster 3D masterpiece that is The Forbidden Journey first??? The food can’t be that interesting, after all, it’s theme park food. Isn’t it just standard fare? These are all questions you may be asking as we turn to Chapter One.
Let me assure you, my fine spellcasters, that The Three Broomsticks is worthy of hours of exploration and enjoyment. We’ll get to the food in a second, but Three Broomsticks is worth checking out for the decor alone. Every nook and cranny is dressed as a rustic English pub that’s barely managing to conceal the magic within.
The cavernous tavern boasts tons of seating, complete with helpful staff members that will show guests to their tables. Open tables gives way to cozy booths in the back of the restaurant, all spreading out around the inviting hearth. Every seat is a new adventure, a new vantage point that allows you to glimpse the magic hidden all around.
The scattered belongings and haphazard organization make you expect a lodging witch to come rushing across one of the upper walkways or an old, white-haired wizard to casually stroll down the stairs, nose buried in the morning’s edition of The Daily Prophet as he joins the throngs below for a quick bit of breakfast.
You might just have trouble deciding whether to look up towards the ceiling or down at your grub.
The food offerings are another matter to marvel at entirely. A blend of traditional English fare and classic American favorites, the menu at The Three Broomsticks boasts something for every guest. Aside from the variety in cuisine origin, there are also breakfast and lunch/dinner options. The prices for most dishes range between $12-$16, with a few specialties priced even higher, but you can expect a solid meal that actually tastes pretty great, not always the given with theme park food. Every meal we’ve had at The Three Broomsticks thus far has been unquestionably worth the price, and several options have absolutely blown us away.
Start your day off with some Eggy Bread, a Full English Breakfast, the Continental breakfast, or a Traditional American spread.
We chowed down on the Eggy bread and an American style breakfast, which consisted of a sausage, bacon, potatoes, eggs, and a croissant. While the Eggy Bread was the clear winner because of the out-of-this-world taste (It’s like french toast but eggy-er…and covered in powdered sugar), both breakfasts held up perfectly well. Insider’s tip: That crispy bacon tho. Pumpkin Juice makes for an excellent breakfast beverage, but TTB boasts a wide selection of fruit juices to accompany your meal–or Butterbeer is always an option.
There are several classic options, like the Fish and Chips or the Shepherd’s Pie, that simply scream ‘British Pub food’! And they do, they really do. In our fervent desire to provide an accurate and helpful account of our time in Hogsmeade, we were sure to sample as many plates as we possibly could.
For the greater good.
The Fish and Chips were delightfully crispy, battered and deep-fried, and just greasy enough to make you feel decadent. Sprinkle some malt vinegar on the fish and the chips, and we’re in business.
The Shepherd’s Pie is a combination of spiced ground beef and veggies (carrots, peas, onions) under a crusty potato top. It comes served with a heaping garden salad.
I’m going to write a book of poems dedicated to the Steak, Lamb, and Guinness Stew. Served in a flaky bread bowl, the stew is warm and heady and delicious. It’s also accompanied by an overwhelmingly large mixed salad that manages to obscure the plate.
The Lemon Herb Roasted Chicken provides a more American dining experience, served with corn and roasted potatoes, but that certainly doesn’t affect the taste. You’ll still feel like a rogue wizard ducking in from the cold to regale strangers with tales of dragon encounters as you dig into your chicken.
The Bangers and Mash have already become a guest favorite, with the large juicy sausages served over potatoes and peas. Also on the menu are selections like a giant Turkey leg, Spare Ribs, a Beef Roast, or a chicken salad. Side dishes like roasted potatoes, corn on the cobb, and garden salads round off the meals.
For family diners, The Three Broomsticks offers a meal known as The Great Feast. This feast boasts a large garden salad, herb roasted chicken, spare ribs, corn on the cobb, and roasted potatoes. This meal is great for groups of 4 people, and at just over $50 dollars, makes for a competitive choice when trying to feed a larger group without going completely bankrupt during your visit to Hogsmeade.
Just order one of everything. You’ll thank me later.
Feeling like ice cream? Florean Fortescue’s Ice Cream has you covered. You can even have strawberry and peanut butter flavor.
Maybe you need a pudding to go beneath your ice cream. The Sticky Toffee Pudding is warm, decadent, and delicious, bathed in toffee chips and vanilla ice cream.
Butterbeer Potted Cream is going to be another Wizarding World of Harry Potter Hollywood favorite. There’s also a Chocolate Potted Cream option, and we’ve heard many a barely contained moan upon the first bite of either.
There’s also apple pie and chocolate trifle, so The Three Broomsticks has plenty to offer dessert-wise. But don’t forget that Honeydukes is literally next door, waiting with doors open wide, filled to the brim with a whole new selection of delightful goodies.
If the menu seems daunting while you’re waiting in line to order, just wait until you’ve reached the counter. Plentiful drink options serve to quench your thirst and accompany your meal, from the classic butterbeer to pumpkin juice (both fizzy and original) to lemonade options and iced tea, to the classic sodas we’ve grown so fond of in the Muggle world. Of course. you’re never remiss with the ultimate Harry Potter treat: the Butterbeer.
Just be warned! There’s an ongoing argument spawned in the first days of technical rehearsals: Frozen Butterbeer vs. Cold Butterbeer. We have only one thing to say on the matter: Guess you’ll just have to try one of each!
Bonus: The Hog’s Head
Step deeper into The Three Broomsticks, past the hearth and winding staircase, slipping beyond the vaulted ceilings to find yourself in the much more compact and slightly dingy but welcoming pub. The single bar stretches across the opposite side wall, providing patrons with butterbeer of a stronger brew. Beer, cider, and liquor of many sorts grace the slightly dusty shelves of this fine establishment, and the barkeep is sure to spin a most engaging tale. The pub’s namesake, a large Hog’s Head hanging behind the bar, can prove a rather egregious fellow, should the desire strike.