Tamu Tamu Refreshments in Animal Kingdom was originally designed as a quick counter service type spot in this "African" area of Animal Kingdom. Now that the larger "Harambe Market" is just around the corner, it seems Tamu Tamu has been turned into a dessert and Dole Whip® stand. As such, it's one of the most elaborate looking quick snack stands out there.
Occupying prime real estate on the corner of Dawa Street and Mahindi Avenue (yes, I just made that up) gives the location a tremendous amount of foot traffic... and so it seems like serving rummed-up Dole Whips® (seriously, do I have to keep putting that ® in there?)… is actually a pretty good idea.
I do think they would attract more customers by painting "Dole Whips® served here" on the building somewhere though. I've seen so many guests walk up to the building looking for some explanation as to what's going on.
Frozen rum whips aren't the only thing that Tamu Tamu offers though, there are at least two items on the menu that speak directly to chocolate lovers… a Double Chocolate Chip Cookie Ice Cream Sandwich (with vanilla ice cream in the middle) and a Chocolate Waffle with Chocolate Mousse (or Vanilla Ice Cream if you prefer).
Also on the menu are a "Mickey Ice Cream Sundae" which on most day's is a half melted single scoop of ice cream on a plate with two cookies as ears… (cute, but not even close to being the best sundae on property)… and Chocolate-covered Expresso Beans (which are sadly, a pre-packaged product and NOT what could be an amazing, made-to-order dessert).
The Chocolate Waffle with Chocolate Mousse picture looks so yummy on Disney's site, I wanted to see what it looked like in real life… (and how it tasted obviously). Sadly, it's not served on a ceramic plate in the shape of a perfectly formed triangle with a thick chocolate, almost Ganache-like sauce carefully drizzled over the dish.
The Chocolate Mousse is clearly being prepped in a chilled round cup and plopped out on a warm waffle. The dessert then gets a bath of thin hot chocolate sauce that seemed a bit thinner than what you would find on a decent hot fudge sundae.
Visually, not stunning… but the flavors and textures were there. The Chocolate Mousse is top notch (and very similar to the Chocolate Mousse we've found at Epcot's Sunshine Seasons
, so… same recipe or product). The Chocolate Waffle (in my case anyway) was made fresh, served hot and was crunchy on the outside, soft on the inside. The "chocolate" part of the waffle doesn't really stand a chance next to the mousse or the sauce. That's sort of the waffle's fault… you can't really pack a ton of chocolate in there and still get the thing to rise quick like a waffle.
The "sauce" that was poured over the top was much thinner than I was expecting. As far as chocolate goes, I'd rather see smaller amounts and higher quality than a quarter cup of brown water… maybe that's just me. Still though, it was sweet and you could detect a slight difference in chocolate flavor between the sauce, the waffle and the mousse.
You can substitute the chocolate mousse with vanilla ice cream (as it says on the menu board)… but I wouldn't. The Chocolate Mousse is the real star of this dish.
If you're in the area and are looking for a quick chocolate fix, I'd say give this one a try. Even though it's not perfect, it's still a really, really good dessert option.