Rosen Shingle Creek Hotel
9939 Universal Boulevard
Jetting from one corner of the US down to almost the exact opposite quadrant is something that I never enjoy. I realize its just one country, but man, can America seem massive some times. And I’m not just talking about the gigantic people I sometimes get sat next to on the airplane. So after a day long journey, a taxi ride once I landed and a groggy check-in past the dinner hour, I was in no mood to check in with my mates (one of whom had arrived two hours before me) and desperately needed to eat something as I got into my room. Thank goodness for that wonderful thing called room service.
Those massively, old fashioned binders that house the pages of the hotel’s restaurant options had some not bad looking choices, but room service was limited to just the one. Fine, I thought, let’s just roll with it. It seemed to be from the Cafe Osceola located on the main floor, and their menu choices were pretty standard fare variety American family fare. As I really hadn’t had anything substantial on the plane rides (after all, who wants airplane food?), I thought it might be overwhelming but decided to get a French Onion Soup to begin with. I should have taken the plastic wrap in taking this shot – so excuse the shiny glare. It was a good size, easily the palm of my hand. A thick layer of oozy cheese was cut through, revealing a very thick with bread cubes soup. Rich and flavorful, and not too salty. The only downside with room service is of course, the temperature of the soup had cooled somewhat, to the point where it was getting just above warm.
I cringed when I hurriedly blurted out my main order while on the phone with the service girl in the kitchen. I wanted something filling and knowing it was a heavy calorie count but given I hadn’t consumed much during the entire day, I thought it would be okay to get the Indian Village Chicken Club. After all, it was grilled chicken, but the cherry-smoked bacon, and smoked cheddar cheese didn’t help keep it light. What you see spread on the top half of the bun is something they called an ancho chipotle mayonnaise. The bun was nicely toasted, something which strangely I always prefer when I have chicken burgers, but not so much when the burger is beef. I have no idea why this quirk exists. The char on the chicken breast was apparent and it was cooked so it wasn’t dried out inside, so on that point it got a pass. The cheese however was a letdown, cracked and lacking moisture so I had to take it off entirely as it was like eating a dehydrated crumbling mess of chalk. Bacon was thin strip, and added the smoky saltiness component to this mixture.
After an early start on one of the later days of this trip, I ended up down at the actual cafe for a proper sit-down breakfast. Allowing my server to recommend something to me as I was in no alert mood to pick and choose for myself, I ended up with this incredibly hearty plate. It was some kind of pulled pork and multiple cheese mixture on top of a dense disc of cooked eggs. This was gargantuan, the American Sized monstrosity that I knew I’d see eventually in Florida and now was my chance. So fatty and rich from the oil in the eggs and the cheese, it was overwhelming and the pork got lost entirely. I like savory breakfasts but this was really ruined for me. I ended up eating maybe a fifth of it and just had the side fruit.
The trappings of in-hotel restaurant dining options is one I am ashamed that I fall victim to, time and time again, out of sheer convenience or rather laziness. The location of this particular hotel that was in the middle of nowhere, resulted in the whole prisoner feel that I endured with my eating choices. A $30 cab ride just to leave somewhere else with restaurants wasn’t always appealing or possible, so for these two meals, I was stuck. Never again I say, but you just know they will snag me again.