Ever wondered why there is no little or no Indian food at Disney? I know I have.  I always thought that having an India Pavillion at Epcot would have been a great addition, but the World Showcase is complete with no room for expansion.  I recall there being a limited amount on the menu at the Rose and Crown restaurant at the United Kingdom in Epcot, but that isn’t really the same as a real Indian meal, complete with meats in spicy sauces, savory vegetable sides, and yummy fresh naan bread.  Well, there is a place where you can satisfy your cravings for delicious Indian food…it’s at Sanaa located at Animal Kingdom Lodge – Kidani Village.  Tucked away in the bottom floor of the DVC (Disney Vacation Club) Kidani Village building is this hidden gem.

The name Sanaa means “artwork” in Swahili. You will find some African art on display, but it’s low-key and incorporated into the whole look and feel of the restaurant.  The whole restaurant is designed to impress.  The lighting and decor are unique from floor to ceiling. There is a bar/lounge which is quite lovely, a nice place to drink and snack if you aren’t looking to eat a full meal.  There are some signature drinks on the menu, like the African Starr Mojito, Malawi Mango Margarita, Kande Coconut Cooler, as well as some African and Indian bottled beer.  The wine selection has been tailored to pair well with the food offerings.  Plus you will find the standard offerings of cocktails and draft beer including seasonal Sam Adams, Blue Moon, and Safari Amber.

One of the special things about Sanaa is the set of arched windows that look out onto the Sunset Savannah, complete with giraffes and zebras, truly a one of a kind dining experience.  There was an African Crowned-Crane that we watched grooming itself near our window during one visit. Sanaa is family friendly and priced as a moderate table service restaurant, WDW rates it as a $$ restaurant, prices ranged from $15 – $35.99 per person.  The menu offers a variety of flavorful Indian dishes, don’t miss out on the Samosas with mango chutney.  Another favorite of mine is the slow-cooked butter chicken and paneer and spinach.  They also offer a selection of Tandoori meats and vegetarian dishes as well as a kid friendly menu.  Don’t forget the bread! The naan bread is excellent, you can either other a la carte (by the piece) or order the “bread service” which comes with your choice of small dips, chutney, relishes, or hummus.

Window seating can be requested but is not guaranteed.  But don’t worry, if you don’t get to sit by the window, you can still view the animals while at Kidani Village. There is a viewing area on the lobby level where you can check out the animals from.  The African Crowned-Cranes seem to hate bunny rabbits, if you are lucky you might catch one trying to bother the bunnies.  Keep in mind you don’t have to be a Disney Vacation Club member to enjoy this restaurant! You can make your Advanced Dining Reservations online or by phone and there is Disney bus service to Animal Kingdom Lodge if you are staying on property.

If you enjoy great food and unique dining, you will agree, Sanaa is worth the trip off the beaten path and might become your new favorite place.

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