Top Tips for the 2014 Epcot Food and Wine Festival

The 2014 Epcot Food and Wine Festival kicks off this week! Get ready for 53 days of food and fun, starting this Friday, September 19!

Epcot Food and Wine Festival Tips

We know that you are just as excited as we are! But it’s a pretty big undertaking. With Special Events, Low Cost Demonstrations and Seminars, and of course, International Marketplace Booths, it can quickly become overwhelming.

Today, we thought we’d lend a hand by giving you a few of our tried-and-true Top Tips from our DFB Guide to the 2014 Epcot Food & Wine Festival e-Book. We’ll help you make this the best Epcot Food and Wine Festival yet!

1. Plan Ahead

If you don’t read or heed any other tip in this post, pay attention to this one: it pays to plan ahead when mapping out your visit to the Epcot Food and Wine Festival.

It’s a good idea to check out all of the Marketplaces and their Menus before you ever set foot inside of Epcot. After all, the portions may be appetizer-sized, but visits to just a couple of spots could mean you’re stuffed before you’re finished exploring!

Will the Mushroom Filet at the Canada Marketplace Be Part of Your Plan?

Will the Mushroom Filet at the Canada Marketplace Be Part of Your Plan?

If you have an idea about what’s offered at the kiosks and how much things cost, then you’ll be better equipped to make decisions and stick to a budget. Be sure to keep an eye on DFB’s 2014 Epcot Food and Wine Festival main page for links to booths, menus, prices, and more.

Disney also gives you some great tools to plan ahead. This year, they’ve published ahead of time a full listing of gluten-free items. We also expect that vegetarian dishes will be marked on the menus. And don’t forget to pick up a Festival Passport at the Festival Center! It’s a fun way to keep track of the dishes you’ve tried!

Collect Those Awesome Stamps in Your Food & Wine Festival Passport!

Collect Those Awesome Stamps in Your Food & Wine Festival Passport!

Worried about your budget? You may want to pick up a Food and Wine Festival Gift Card and have it pre-loaded for convenience.

Food and Wine Festival Gift Card

Food and Wine Festival Gift Card

Not only is this a quick way to pay at the booths, but it also makes easy work of tracking how much you’ve spent.

2. Know How to Beat the Crowds

There’s a reason that the festival is celebrating its 19th year — it’s kind of a big deal! So don’t be surprised when you encounter larger crowds than you might expect during the Fall at Disney World.

But there are ways to deal with the crowds. First, know that the weekends are prime time to stroll the promenade. Not only are out of town guests checking out the festival, but lots of locals plan day visits or event overnight stays on the weekends as well. If you’d like to avoid the crowds, plan to hit your favorite Marketplace stops during weekdays, and earlier in the day if possible. Crowds swell in the evening as Eat to the Beat Concerts get underway.

Plan to Hit the Booths When They Open to Avoid Lines

Plan to Hit the Booths When They Open to Avoid Lines

Chase Cardmembers also have another option for taking a break from touring: the Chase Lounge.

Chase Lounge in the America Pavilion

Chase Lounge in the America Pavilion

An exclusive perk for Chase credit and debit members, the lounge (located upstairs in the American Adventure pavilion) offers guests a place to grab a drink, recharge their phones, and enjoy some air conditioning!

3. Be Adventurous

Looking to expand your palate? The festival is a great place to work on that goal. With more than 25 kiosks offering authentic flavors from around the globe, you’re sure to run into something new! Be sure to take advantage of this easy way to try new things. You may just find a favorite dish!

Try the Kimchi Dog with Spicy Mustard Sauce

Try the Kimchi Dog with Spicy Mustard Sauce

And while you’re at it, why not get the kiddos in on the fun?? We all know that getting kids to try new things isn’t always the easiest thing to do. But can you think of any place better to attempt the feat than at a Disney park (it’s Mickey-approved, after all)? Getting them involved in the selection process just may pique their interest. And appetizer portions are the perfect size for smaller appetites.

4. Take Advantage of Low Cost Demonstrations and Seminars

Experiencing all of the great food and drink at the festival is awesome, but it’s Epcot, and you’ve got to make room for learning. And that’s why the Low Cost Demonstrations and Seminars are such a fun aspect of this event.

Mixology Seminar at the 2011 Epcot Food and Wine Festival

Mixology Seminar at the 2011 Epcot Food and Wine Festival

For $15 per person, you can choose from culinary demonstrations, wine tastings, or mixology seminars. The events offer up-close learning, as experts in each field talk you through through making a dish, tasting wine, or crafting cocktails with quality ingredients.

Cat Cora's Dish From a Culinary Demonstration

Cat Cora’s Dish From a Culinary Demonstration

And best of all — you get to taste the final product! It’s a fun way to learn, and with the cost of premium events continuing to climb, it’s a fairly inexpensive way to enhance your festival experience.

5. Use Those Snack Credits Wisely!

But we’ve saved the best tip for last! If you’re using the Disney Dining Plan, remember that many of the Marketplace food menu items are available for a snack credit. So while it may be tempting to snag that krispie treat or Mickey Bar to tide you over between meals, we LOVE to hoard our snack credits this time of year to Dine Our Way Around the World!

Enjoy Dishes Like the Kalua Pork Slider with Sweet and Sour Dole Pineapple Chutney and Spicy Mayonnaise at the Hawai'i Booth -- for a Snack Credit!

Enjoy Dishes Like the Kalua Pork Slider with Sweet and Sour Dole Pineapple Chutney and Spicy Mayonnaise at the Hawai’i Booth — for a Snack Credit!

Where else can you get lobster or steak for a snack credit?

Want Even More Great Tips For Making the 2014 Epcot Food and Wine Festival Your Best Trip Ever?

The Epcot Food and Wine Festival is a big deal! And with so much to do, see, experience, and EAT, it can be a little overwhelming. And that’s why we’ve written the DFB Guide to the 2014 Epcot Food & Wine Festival e-Book.

Our guides has everything to help you enjoy your time at the 2014 Epcot Food and Wine Festival to the fullest! Inside, you’ll find:

  • Full pages dedicated to every single Marketplace Booth, including menus and photos
  • A daily schedule of events detailing every single thing happening at the Festival on your visit
  • A full listing of Low Cost Seminars and Demonstrations
  • A printable Booth Menu Checklist
  • Tips for budgeting and saving at the Food and Wine Festival
  • Fun suggestions for enhancing your Festival experience, like Food and Drink Crawls

Plus so much more!

And to help you get started with your planning, we’re offering the DFB Guide to the 2014 Epcot Food & Wine Festival e-Book at a savings.

Use code CHEFS at check-out for a $3 discount!

And now, we’d love to hear from you! Share your top tips for enjoying the Epcot Food and Wine Festival with us below!

Comments

  1. Rach says

    AJ, I am shocked that you didn’t mention your tray in this article somewhere. ;-)

    BTW thanks for adding the non-dated version of the bumper sticker to the Zazzle shop. I’ll be ordering one for my tray (It folds flat for transportation!) in the near future.

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