“Umm why are you going to Disney?” I received a lot of confused looks and faces when I mentioned I was going to Disney since I don’t have kids. I like most Adults probably aren’t aware of the annual Epcot International Food and Wine Festival. This is the first year I’ve heard about it after a few people mentioned the festival to me but I never really looked into it. After mixed reviews, I was still hesitant to go. However, I was limited on vacation days and weekend trips is all I can manage right now. I decided to do as always and see for myself. The Festival typical runs from late September-Early November. Attendees can expect food and beverage seminars, demonstrations and special events at Restaurants and Hotels.
To attend you must pay for park entry + $5-$8 per tasting or drink. I would suggest purchasing a park hopper pass and spreading out over a few days so that you attend the festival + other attractions in other parks. Time was not on my side as I tried to fit the festival in one day and on the last weekend of the festival. I enjoyed myself however It was very costly. There are a few things that I did to save money on the front end. Read about them here.
Eating Around The World
Epcot is divided into various countries called, the World Showcase and each area is themed with similar architecture and replica of landmarks around the world. One stop shop to tour the countries and try the food. For the festival, each country had tastings you could purchase. There are free passport books to help you track the food and areas visited. Some areas were more popular than others. There were a few areas I did not get to try due to the long lines.
Some of my favorites eats/drinks were:
Probably my favorite since I purchased multiple items here including the Grilled Tuna Tataki ($5.25), Passion Fruit Cheesecake with Macadamia nuts ($4) and Florida Orange Grove Sparkling Pineapple Wine ($6).
Les Halles Boulangerie-Patisserie in The France Pavilion
Wine and Dine Studio
Hi my name is Kim and I am a cheese-a-holic. I LOVE cheese so I rushed over for a wine flight with cheese. The cheeses included Point Reyes Original Blue and Toma. Wine included Sauvignon Blanc, Malbac and Chardonnay for $11.25
I love Thai food so I naturally gravitated to this early on. I tried the marinated chicken in Peanut Sauce ($4.75) and Helfrich Gewurztraminer, Alsace wine which is French-based but supposedly pairs well with Thai food.
I spent about $100-$150 on food, drinks and souvenirs. For the most part, the crowds were friendly. Most travel squads had their own designed t-shirt with catchy phrases related to Wine. It was a fun experience despite the rain, humid weather and long lines. However, a small disclaimer is that I was able to get in free due to an employee accompanying me. Otherwise, I’m not sure I would pay an additional $150+to enter the park plus food for the festival. It would be great if park entry came with a few tickets for tastings during the festival.