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The Manticore's Tavern served as a family friendly restaurant when magic became scarce across the land of mythical creatures. The restaurant's mascot is an anthropomorphic cartoony character known as "Manticore", following a full-bodied costumed character who is also based on the mascot on the tavern. Within the tavern is a collection of memories of who the Manticore once was before she became a restaurant owner, including a map of the elusive Phoenix Gem. Visitors who ask the Manticore for the map can only get a family-friendly map as no one is allowed to touch the real map as the Manticore worked hard on finding the Phoenix Gem throughout her past adventure.
The tavern also included a Fun Zone, which is a small arcade consisting of "Gauntlet", a claw machine game with an actual gauntlet instead of a claw and "Smite-a-Knight”, a Whac-A-Mole game but with knights instead of moles.
Role in the film
In a plan to bring Ian's father back to life, Barley insists on the place where all the quests begin via board game Quests of Yore which is at the Manticore's Tavern, run by a restaurant owner known as The Manticore who would know where to find any rare artifact based on the ones seen in the land of mythical creatures. Planning to go the Manticore's Tavern, Barley and Ian ride on their van Guinevere and leave New Mushroomton to get to the tavern. Upon arriving, Ian and Barley enter and ask a cyclops receptionist that the elf brothers are looking for the Manticore to which a costumed Manticore appears instead. Trying to look for the real Manticore, the receptionist tells them that the real Manticore, Corey is busy doing her kitchen routine. Approaching Corey, Barley asks Corey that he and Ian are looking for a map to find the Phoenix Gem to which Corey gives one which is a kid's menu instead of a real map. Corey explains that the kid's menus are based on her old maps she collected before she became a restaurant owner to which while looking for the real map, the elf brothers see it mounted on a wall next to the Tome of Truth and Vulcan's Amulet artifacts. Taking it, Corey warns her that the map she mounted up on the wall is worthless as she refuses to give it to them. She explains that she is retired from sending adventurers on dangerous quest to which her conversation becomes interrupted when the receptionist tells her the karaoke machine is broken.
As Ian tries to talk to Corey about the plan, Corey tells her that if she plans on going on the quest, she will lose her job as a restaurant owner. Ian despondently interrupts Corey's plan to fix the karaoke machine for an unhappy band known as Squad to which while arguing, she tells her to see the portrait of her as a mighty warrior to which she feels humiliated about remembering who she once was and also looks at the quote above the portrait of her as a mighty warrior. Upset about this, Corey angrily quits her job routining the restaurant and sets the tavern on fire and to be closed for remodeling just as everyone evacuates. However, the real map burns during the fire just as Ian, Barley, and their late father escape from the burning tavern. Fortunately, the only surviving clue the brothers obtained during the fire was the kid's menu (actually done by a customer named Kayla), in which the clue is linked to the Phoenix Gem at Raven's Point.
Laurel Lightfoot later visits the place and arriving at the spot where Corey is being interviewed by the police officers about the incident with her restaurant to which she tells them that Ian and Barley have continued their quest to find the Phoenix Gem. Laurel and Corey discuss with Officer Avel about the incident with Ian and Barley while the two decide to have a private conversation about the incident. However, Avel only notices the two have left due to him looking at the charred mascot costume on the police car.
With magic brought back to the land of mythical creatures, the Manticore's Tavern is reopened where Corey entertains the customers about her fight with the Curse Dragon.
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Manticore's Tavern in Disney Magic Kingdoms
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Concept art of Manticore's Tavern
- Several cameos and references to other Disney/Pixar merchandise can be found in the tavern:
- A shield with a Pixar Ball can be seen in the background, first seen where Ian and Barley enter the tavern and hear a young elf having her birthday celebrated.
- Pepita from the Pixar film, Coco can be seen in a distant shelf in the Fun Zone.
- The Clan DunBroch icon from Brave can be seen on one of the Manticore's book titled Tome of Truth on the Wall of Adventure wall. Also, an artifact titled "Vulcan's Amulet" is also seen next to the map for the Phoenix Gem in reference to the Greek god of the same name.
- Some of the tavern employees wear sorcerer hats with stars that resemble the iconic Sorcerer Hat from the Fantasia segment, "The Sorcerer's Apprentice".
- The Infinity Gauntlet from the Marvel Cinematic Universe can be seen on the "Gauntlet" claw machine, which is ironic since both Ian and Barley's voice actors Tom Holland and Chris Pratt were killed in Avengers: Infinity War and later revived in the successor sequel.
- One of the chefs working in the background is actually a cameo of Remy, the protagonist from Ratatouille. Remy appears in life-sized form instead of diminutive form; therefore, his face is never seen.
- The game "Smite-a-Knight" (which is a parody of Whac-a-Mole) which involves players hitting knights with a mallet is a reference to knights who have always fought and killed mythical creatures as enemies.
- Menu items on the kid's menu include Griffin Nuggets, Kraken Legs, Roast Beast, and MannaChos.
- Roast Beast is likely named after the food served to The Who family at the end of the Dr. Seuss book, "How the Grinch Stole Christmas!". It is also a pun on Roast Beef.
- MannaChos could be a pun on Mandrake and Nachos.
- In the international versions of Onward, the kid's menu was altered. The speech bubble below the Manticore mascot and the scroll the mascot is holding is simply replaced with a maze requiring readers to draw a path to find the Phoenix Gem. Jumbled letters are replaced by numbers below the aforementioned gem to get over the language barrier, followed by the plate saying "Kid's Menu" simply altered with a smiley face as well as the menu items written on it being replaced by a path section and a connect-the-dots section. However, the one seen during the part where the tavern catches on fire remains unaltered.
- Cauldrons used as bowls are equivalent to soup used on bowls in real life.
- Potions used as drinking materials are equivalent to beverages used for drinking in real life.
- Spoofs of real-life beverages as shown in the kid's menu include Mt. Mist (spoof of Sierra Mist), Mt. Doom (spoof of Mountain Dew), Cloak Root Ale (spoof of Ginger Ale), and Dr. Fizzard (spoof of Dr. Pepper).
- The Wall of Adventure wall originally had English texts for English releases. For international releases, these texts have been altered and replaced by runic alphabet to get over the language barrier.
- Also, for the quote saying, "You have to take risks in life to have an adventure" above the portrait of the Manticore herself, the aforementioned quote was translated in international versions, but the Manticore's name was simply replaced by a small silhouette icon of the Manticore herself.