As the story goes, Jock spotted the lakeside property that now bears his name as he was flying Indiana Jones over Florida in 1938, looking for the Fountain of Youth. He returned a couple of years later, because who doesn’t love Orlando, and opened a flight-seeing business. Eventually the hangar he worked out of became a hang-out for The Society of Explorers and Adventurers (die-hard Disney fans will recognise that name from other Disney parks and attractions).
The first thought that hits you when you enter Jock’s is, “Wow. It’s small.” The second thought is, “Wow, it’s packed with cool stuff!” Maps, antiques, aeroplane parts, postcards, letters, newspaper clippings, keys, tools; it’s a conglomeration of a life-time spent collecting, and because it’s Indiana Jones-meets-Disney, each piece is there for a reason. There are references to the mega-hit Indiana Jones movies, and sharp eyes will also see nods to the Marvel and Star Wars franchises and the former Adventurer’s Club, once a serious fan-favourite that highlighted Downtown Disney’s now-defunct Pleasure Island.
If you’re not familiar with the name Jock Lindsey but know the films, Jock is the pilot Indiana Jones hired on occasion (notably in the Raiders of the Lost Ark movie). You may recall him delivering the famous line, “Oh, that’s just my pet snake Reggie,” as Indy struggles in his plane seat, unable to get away from his dreaded nemesis. You’ll find Reggie mentioned in a few places around the hangar, including on the menu, as the bar’s signature (and startlingly lime green!) cocktail, and as the name Jock gave his boat, vaguely reminiscent of the Jungle Cruise ships, now dry-docked next to the bar and serving as quirky outdoor seating.
Don’t know the films well? Don’t worry. The atmosphere at Hangar Bar is so absorbing even those who aren’t fans of the franchise can appreciate the attention to detail, and the humour. The “story” here is unique to Jock, so no prior knowledge of the films is necessary.
The humour extends to the menu, appropriately called the Pilot’s Flight Book, filled with personal notes from Jock, more postcards and photographs, and, of course, descriptions of the bar’s light bites and extensive drinks selections. Naturally, there is a cocktail (make that ‘Jocktail’) called Reggie’s Revenge, a combination of Florida Cane ‘Orlando Orange’ vodka, Midori Melon Liqueur, White Cranberry Juice, and Fresh Lime Juice. At $10.25, it’s not an inexpensive libation, but you do get to keep the glass and the cool swizzle stick with a snake wrapped around it.
The least pricy cocktail is $8.25 (the German Mechanic, essentially a Shandy), the most pricy is $21.00 (the Hail Marty, a luxurious taste sensation of E.H. Taylor Jr. Single Barrel Straight Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey bottled in Bond, served with an ice sphere). Beer, wine, ‘bubbles’, whiskey flight, sake and dessert wines are also available, as are non-alcoholic ‘Jocktails’ at $3.79-$4.79.
If you’re a collector, there are 4 drinks served in souvenir glasses: the aforementioned Reggie’s Revenge; the Cool-Headed Monkey (Star African Rum, Van Der Hum Tangerine Liqueur, Fresh Lime Juice, Watermelon, and Pineapple Juice); Hovito Mojito (Barsol Quebranta Pisco, Fresh Lime Juice, Mint, Simple Syrup, Topped with Soda Water); and the lady-like Anything Goes (Byejoe Dragon Fire Spirit, Fresh Lime Juice, Passionfruit, and Pineapple Juice).
The menu’s nine light bites have amusing names too, such as Lao Che’s Revenge (spicy Asian sticky wings direct from Club Obi Wan); Rolling Boulder Sliders (spicy meatball sliders with yoghurt sauce); and “Squid! Why Did It Have To Be Squid?” (fried calamari flatbread with Harissa spread). Appetizers run from $7.99 to $14.99.
There are 6 indoor tables (including one inside a giant diving bell) with seating for 6 to 8 at the bar, but the majority of tables are outdoors. Pleasant during the shoulder seasons, perhaps a bit warm in summer, cool in winter, the view over Village Lake is outstanding, and there is a second bar outdoors that will vie heavily for our attention as the heat of summer dissipates.
The trend at Downtown Disney’s The Landing seems to be toward lakeside lounges, and visitors now have 4 excellent choices: Hangar Bar, The Boathouse, Paradiso 37, and Lava Lounge at Rainforest Café. We’re big fans of an evening along the lakeside with a nice glass of something refreshing, and we’re pretty sure visiting all four wouldn’t go amiss on a 2-week holiday. You can even use the nearby Disney buses, a taxi or the Lynx bus for the return trip to your accommodation, all easily caught from Downtown Disney Marketplace.
Guests staying at Disney’s Saratoga Springs Resort and Disney’s Old Key West Resort are even better catered-for, with a brand new boat dock between the Hangar Bar and Paradiso 37. Or, take the boat ride to Downtown Disney West Side or Downtown Disney Marketplace and mellow out after a drink or two. Those staying at a Hotel Boulevard hotel near Downtown Disney will have an easy stroll back ‘home’.
Even if you’re just making a ‘flying visit’ to Downtown Disney, drop in and have a look around. Cast Member Chris said, “I have been in this spot for three and a half weeks now and still see new things every day.” Don’t forget to look for Reggie’s cage, and try not to freak out when you discover it’s open…and empty!
Bar/restaurant hours are 11:30am-midnight Sunday through Thursday, and 11.30am to 1am Friday and Saturday. Reservations are not accepted, and both the indoor and outdoor seating is open (come in, find a table, and sit down). Expect waits on weekends, evenings, and during main dining times. The Disney Dining Plan is not accepted at this time.
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