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Have You Seen the Royal Feast?

Every once in a while I’ll be wandering through the Disney parks when I stumble across a hidden gem — something that most guests will probably just walk right by, but that catches my food-obsessed eye.

On my last trip, I was browsing through The Sportsman’s Shoppe in Epcot’s United Kingdom pavilion. On my way out (headed to the pub across the street), I saw this. Click on any of the photos for larger images:

This gorgeous diorama sits in a short lobby leading to the outdoors, just outside the shop and just across from the Rose & Crown Restaurant. I’m not sure I’d ever seen it before, but I was spellbound. I stared for several minutes, first trying to determine the story in the scene and then trying to take in all of the unbelievable detail.

Clearly, what we’re looking at here is a Royal Feast: the King is seated next to his Queen and Royal guests, servants bustle about behind the table, and an entertainer is rolling a hoop in front of the Royal party. And that’s not all — Knights in Armor guard the table with glistening, bejeweled shields; musicians stand in the balconies ready to entertain at a moment’s notice; Royal crests bedeck the walls; and a huge stained glass window completes the scene.

And he’s “rolling” in the true sense. The diorama is animatronic. You can watch the entertainer roll his hoop back and forth and even see the King and his male guests raise their glasses in what I can only imagine is a toast (since nobody seems to have touched their food, yet!). Interestingly, it is only the males raising their glasses… .

Glasses are Down

Glasses are Up

In front of the guests is a gorgeous spread of incredibly detailed food. Lots of fruits and vegetables, a loaf of bread, a suckling pig resting on a bed of lettuce and apples, a pie, a tart (which looks like it’s actually nestled on a doily), and more — all served on bronze dishes covered with jewels.

One of the most interesting parts of the scene, however, is the detail painted onto the faces of the guests and servants. Some are uncertain, some are clearly bored, some are out-and-out flirting!

This little piece of art is definitely worth a look or two. Or, if you’re me, half an hour of pure enjoyment!

Have you seen it?

Source for Wide-Angle Photograph

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13 Comments

  1. Nancy says:

    YES AJ! I have seen it and it is indeed mesmerizing. I too have stood there for a very long time….on several different trips actually…..each time noticing something that I never saw before. It is, as you shared so thoroughly, extremely detailed.

    But I must say, I never noticed the flirting! Will definitely be looking for that on our next trip! Thanks so much for sharing! :)

  2. AJ says:

    Thanks for your comment, Nancy! Yes! Flirting indeed! Check it out in that last photo ;-)

  3. Kerri says:

    im going to Epcot in June, and now I have to look out for this! It is so interesting :)

  4. Michele says:

    AJ –

    your title intrigued me! I thought “what is this of which she writes?” LOL! I thought you meant some sort of new food service.

    Yes, I also saw that window and indeed took a pic of it. I only noticed it this last trip, but knowing what lies behind it, so I’ll stare at it some more next trip. Thank you!

    -michele

  5. chris says:

    The winking woman is clearly thinking of ways to take the queen’s place! Maybe there’s poison in that goblet that the king is handing to the queen?

  6. AJ says:

    Michele — You never know what you’ll find on the Food Blog! There are only so many restaurants; if we’re going to keep going for years, we’ve gotta get creative! No “food” is off-limits. Plus, this lets me indulge my love of “Disney Details.”

    Chris — I thought she was considering running away with the servant later! Seriously, I could stare at this thing for hours and make up stories…

  7. AJ says:

    Kerri! Yes! Definitely take a look!

  8. We’re heading back in May and I’ll definitely grab some closeups of these faces AJ…I’ve never seen this before and I always look around at the UK Pavilion…amazing. Just goes to show you that if you think you’ve seen everything there is to see at WDW…

  9. AJ says:

    James — Definitely true! Photos of the faces is a great idea. What a cool series! My advice — go at night — clearly I had a tough time getting the sunshine glare off of the glass…

  10. madoka says:

    This is very cool! I have not seen this before and will be sure to look for it on our next trip. Thanks, AJ! How tall are the standing figures?

  11. AJ says:

    Madoka — The standing figures are probably between 6-10 inches tall (I’m not a good judge of height!).

  12. chris says:

    AJ, if you can stare at this thing for hours and make up stories, you are going to be an excellent, and fun, mom!

  13. AJ says:

    Chris — I’ll take that as a compliment! ;-)

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