Tips from the DFB Guide: Recommended Epcot Food and Wine Festival One-Day Strategy

The 2015 Epcot Food and Wine Festival will be here before you know it! Mark your calendars for September 25-November 16, 2015!

2015 Epcot Food and Wine Logo

That’s more than seven full weeks to enjoy all that this incredible event has to offer. And there is so much to do and see!

I’ve often thought through the years that it would be great to stick around for the entire Food and Wine Festival and take in every special event, cooking demonstration, and Eat to the Beat Concert. But we both know that’s not gonna happen. Who has that kind of time, right?

Well, here’s the good news. Even if you’re short on time, you can still enjoy so much of what the festival has to offer by planning ahead.

Over the next few weeks, we’ll take a look at some of the Touring Strategies featured in the DFB Guide to the Epcot Food and Wine Festival. And don’t forget — when you pre-order the 2015 Guide, you’ll receive the 2014 immediately for free, so you can get started planning right away!

Today, we’ll get started by discussing how to make the most of the festival when you only have one day to enjoy it!

Get An Early Start

Even if you only have one day to spend at the 2015 Epcot Food and Wine Festival, you can still make the most of your time. Plan to arrive early — a day where there are morning Extra Magic Hours would be ideal. And then head to the Festival Center when it opens at 9:00AM.

Festival Center

Festival Center

Here, you can browse the shops and pick up your free [Read more…]

Review: Troll Horn and Rice Cream at Kringla Bakeri og Kafe in Epcot’s Norway

You know how I love finding out about new eats and treats all over Disney World and Disneyland, right?

Well, I can tell you it has been keeping me pretty busy lately! We’re talking Caramel Sticks in Disneyland’s Candy Palace, and Baked Lobster Mac and Cheese at the Beastly Kiosk in Disney’s Animal Kingdom (oh, and umm… poop candy at the new Zuri’s Sweets Shop, while we’re at it). We’ve got two new flavors of ice cream over at L’Artisan des Glaces, and… the list goes on and on!

And it’s super fun — it really is. But eating NEW things all the time means that I never have time — or stomach space — for my old favorites. Well, today I wanted to re-try two of my favorite snacks over at Kringla Bakeri og Kafe in Norway’s Epcot. After all, they’ve both gone through some changes since we last reviewed them, so they ARE technically “new” in some ways!

Kringla Bakeri og Kafe sign

Kringla Bakeri og Kafe sign

So recently I stopped back in for [Read more…]

Tips from the DFB Guide: Don’t Miss These Holiday Events in Disney World!

Summer may have just officially started, but we are already thinking of the Holidays at Walt Disney World!

miniguide_2015holiday

Sounds crazy, I know, but we’re just over 180 days — six months! — until the holidays are in full swing, and NOW is the time to make dining plans for your holiday meals — but it’s also the time to consider what other fun activities you’ll enjoy at Walt Disney World this holiday season.

To jumpstart your planning, today we’re talking about some of our favorite Tips from the DFB Guide to the Holidays at Disney World: Three Holiday Events that you can’t miss!

And speaking of the DFB Guide, don’t get to take advantage of our 180 Days Til Christmas Sale! Through June 28, we’re offering three great ways to save when you pre-order the 2015 DFB Guide to the Holidays at Walt Disney World. Check out all of the details about the sale here!

Now, let’s take a look at some of our favorite holiday events that you should definitely plan on working into your Disney holiday calendar…

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party

Snow on Main Street USA and life-size Toy Soldiers? That’s part of your reality when you attend the long-running and beloved Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party.

Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party

Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party

This hard-ticketed event takes place during select evenings from November 8 until December 18, 2015, this year, and brings all of the joy and warm fuzzy feeling of Christmas and the holiday season to Magic Kingdom.

Toy Soldiers During the Once Upon a Christmastime Parade!

Toy Soldiers During the Once Upon a Christmastime Parade!

During the event, guests enjoy special entertainment and character meet and greets. Complimentary cocoa and cookies fuel you up for all the fun. And there are TONS of special, exclusive treats that you can enjoy only during the Party!

Snickerdoodles and hot cocoa

Snickerdoodles and Hot Cocoa

And be sure to grab a front row seat for Mickey’s Once Upon A Christmastime Parade, which features Santa as well as some of your favorite Disney holiday characters. And, of course Anna and Elsa will be there!

Holidays Around the World

Looking to observe the holidays with international flair? Then an evening at Epcot for Holidays Around the World will fit the bill nicely. Enjoy a stroll around Epcot’s beautiful World Showcase as storytellers from around the globe share seasonal tales within several of the pavilions — free with Epcot admission!

Pere Noel

Père Noël

And if you didn’t score a seat for the [Read more…]

News: 2015 Epcot Candlelight Processional Dinner Package Restaurants and Pricing

Candlelight Processional Dinner Packages will return during the 2015 holiday season at Walt Disney World!! And for those of us that like guaranteed seating and avoiding long waiting lines, this is very good news!

Epcot's Candlelight Processional

Epcot’s Candlelight Processional

Along with restaurant information (sorry, no Le Cellier again this year)and costs (some steep, yikes!), you’ll also find some intermittent booking availability online for this very popular event, however 2015 narrators have not been announced as of yet. Note that all information here is subject to change.

In 2015, the Candlelight Processional will take place from November 27 – December 30.

Disney World Candlelight Processional Dining Package

This coveted ticket provides guests with a lunch or dinner meal at select Epcot restaurants and guaranteed seating! The package includes your choice of an appetizer, entree, dessert, and non-alcoholic, non-specialty beverage from the chosen restaurant’s menu or 1 full buffet where applicable. Prices exclude tax and gratuity, and park admission is not included. And yes, you can use the Disney Dining Plan to pay for your package, see more information here.

2015 Out-of-Pocket Costs
The package costs vary based on lunch versus dinner, starting at [Read more…]

Epcot Food and Wine Festival FAQ: How Much Should I Budget For the Festival?

You may be just starting Summer vacation and all that goes with it, but here at Disney Food Blog, we’re also busy gearing up for one of our most favorite times of the year — the Epcot Food and Wine Festival!

2015 Epcot Food and Wine Logo

The festival, which runs from September 25 until November 16 this year, will celebrate its 20th anniversary in 2015. There is so much to do, see, taste, and experience, all crammed into seven weeks. So you’re bound to have some questions about planning for it — and specifically, how to budget for all you want to do.

So today, let’s talk a little bit about budgeting to get you ready for Fall’s biggest Disney food event.

How Much Does It Cost to Go to the Epcot Food and Wine Festival?

Many things at the festival are included in your Epcot admission. Attractions and events such as Eat to the Beat Concerts, Back to Basics Seminars, and the Cranberry Bog are all complimentary with your Epcot ticket.

The Cranberry Bog Returns to the Epcot Food and Wine Festival in 2015

The Cranberry Bog Returns to the Epcot Food and Wine Festival in 2015

And new for 2015, guests can also enjoy Remy’s Ratatouille Hide and Squeak Scavenger Hunt, a fun game that will take place around World Showcase.

But food and drink, even at the Epcot Food and Wine Festival Booths, is not included in the price of admission. And Special Events do cost extra and can range widely, depending on the events you plan to attend.

How Much Money Should I Budget For a Day at the Epcot Food and Wine Festival?

The answer to this question varies widely from person to person. A great way to experience the festival is by Eating and Drinking Your Way Around the World, Marketplace Discovery Passport, in hand! In the past, plates and pours at the World Showcase Booths have averaged [Read more…]

Dining Details: Wall Murals at Via Napoli in Epcot’s Italy Pavilion

It just goes to show… you can visit Disney World a million and one times (and I’ve got to be coming up close to that number ;) ), and still notice something new every time.

I’m a fan of Via Napoli in Epcot’s Italy Pavilion. Not only does it serve the best pizza in Disney World; it’s become a tradition for us.

So how is it, then, that I only noticed this incredibly cool detail on my most recent visit? OK, at least I THINK it’s a cool detail. I might be totally making it up, but I could super see Disney Imagineers doing this on purpose.

Look at this orange tree as seen through one of the restaurant’s windows.

Orange Tree outside the window

Orange Tree outside the window

And now check out the fresco painting on the wall right next to it.

Wall mural next to the window

Wall mural next to the window

Hmmmm…. Looks similar, right?

I think this may be a continuation, bringing the [Read more…]

Epcot’s L’Artisan des Glaces Celebrates its Second Anniversary with New Flavors and Sundaes!

Happy Second Anniversary, L’Artisan des Glaces!

From the moment the doors opened two years ago in the former spot of Boulangerie Patisserie in the France Pavilion, it was clear L’Artisan des Glaces was not your typical ice cream stop.

The Boulangerie relocated to a larger space, and L’Artisan des Glaces began to carve its own unique niche in the Disney dining scene almost immediately upon its debut.

So, what made the arrival of this little shop so special?

First of all, every single one of the 16 flavors of ice cream and sorbet was — and still is — made in-house.

L'Artisan des Glaces in Epcot's France Pavilion

L’Artisan des Glaces in Epcot’s France Pavilion

Opening Day L'Artisan des Glaces Flavors

Opening Day L’Artisan des Glaces Flavors

L'artisan des Glaces ice cream case

L’artisan des Glaces ice cream case

And second? The shop began to introduce some incredible and unique ice cream confections that we’d never seen the likes of before in Walt Disney World!

As we wish L’Artisan a huge Happy Birthday and Bon Anniversaire, we wanted to take a peek at just a few of these creations that are now a part of the eating scene in Epcot!

Ice Cream Martinis

Thanks to the addition of L’Artisan, Epcot guests 21 and over suddenly had the option of pairing their ice cream flavor of choice with…BOOZE! Grand Marnier, Clement Rhum from Martinique, or Whipped Cream flavored Vodka could be added to create their own gorgeous Ice Cream Martini.

Ice Cream Martini from L'Artisan des Glaces in Epcot's France Pavilion

Ice Cream Martini

Between this and the rich, creamy homemade ice cream, L’Artisan started earning its terrific reputation from the get-go. Refusing, however, to rest on their laurels, the ice cream artists have continued to change things up and crank out surprises year-round.

Macaron Ice Cream Sandwiches

Additional treats began to appear later in 2013, starting with the Chocolate Macaron Ice Cream Sandwich. This decadent snack is a scoop of chocolate ice cream sandwiched inside a large, crisp-on-the-outside, chewy on the inside chocolate macaron cookie.

Chocolate Macaron Ice Cream Sandwich

Chocolate Macaron Ice Cream Sandwich

While you can still get the Chocolate Macaron Ice Cream sandwich any time of year, new versions of this treat began [Read more…]

2015 Epcot Food and Wine Festival News: Menu for Mexico Tequila Tasting Lunch

We have some exciting news today for you about the 2015 Epcot Food and Wine Festival! We’ve confirmed that Tequila Pairing Lunches in the Mexico Pavilion are back as part of the Special Events line up!

Screen Shot 2015-05-29 at 2.14.45 PM

I had the chance to attend the luncheon a while back. It was a great way to spend the afternoon — sampling tequila, and learning how this versatile spirit can pair beautifully with different menu items.

In anticipation of this year’s lineup, our friends from the Mexico Pavilion recently held a tasting to determine just what would make the menu cut.

We’re excited to share some menu descriptions straight from La Cava del Tequila! Let’s take a closer look.

Menu Planned for the Tequila Pairing Lunch at the 2015 Epcot Food and Wine Festival

When I attended the Tequila Pairing Lunch, we enjoyed four courses, paired with three different tequilas as well as Agovera Liqueur. (This event is not for the faint of heart. :-) )

Display Table at Entry of Luncheon

Display Table at Entry of Luncheon

As of the writing of this post, the lunch will include four courses paired with tequilas. But please keep in mind, the dishes are subject to change! Anything is possible between now and Festival Go-Time on September 25!

Your journey through the world of tequila will start with a Flautas de Carnitas — a mini crispy Flauta filled with Pork Carnitas and accompanied by Avocado, Cream, Queso Foam, Roasted Serrano Pepper, and Tomato.

Crispy Carnitas

Flautas de Carnitas

The next course, Sopa de Chile Poblano y Calabaza, will be prepared with Roasted Poblano Pepper, Zucchini, Cilantro, Queso Fresco, and Guajillo Pepper Oil.

The Main Entrée will be a combination of Mar y TierraPan-Seared Snapper and New York Strip — served with a creamy [Read more…]

Pre-Order the DFB Guide to the 2015 Epcot Food and Wine Festival…and Get the 2014 Guide FREE!

Happy 20th Birthday, Epcot Food and Wine Festival!!

Food and Wine Festival Updates

Can you believe it? 2015 will mark the 20th Consecutive Year that Walt Disney World has hosted this event. What started as a way to draw crowds during a slower part of the year has officially become a huge draw and destination in its own right.

And even though it’s only (ONLY?!?) April, it is NEVER too early to start the countdown to the Epcot Food and Wine Festival! We’re already sharing who will be playing at the Eat to the Beat Concerts, so it’s definitely time to start booking your dates…

This year’s Festival will once again run a record number of days — more than seven full weeks of food, music, and special events! But with so much awesomeness to enjoy, my number one piece of advice remains the same: Plan, Plan, Plan. And then Plan some more.

And we have a fun and easy way for you to get started, even before the first menu or culinary demo is announced!

The DFB Guide to the Epcot Food and Wine Festival is now available for pre-order. (Expected publish date is mid-Summer 2015.) And when you enter discount code “CHEFS” at checkout, you’ll enjoy $3 off the cover price!

But AJ, Why Do I Want to Order the DFB Guide to the Epcot Food and Wine Festival Now?

I’m really glad that you asked! The biggest and best reason for you to pre-order your 2015 DFB Guide to the Food and Wine Festival is that you’ll get the 2014 Guide immediately for FREE!

Epcot Food and Wine Festival Brazil Marketplace Booth

Find out our best tips for visiting the World Showcase booths in the DFB Guide to the Epcot Food and Wine Festival e-Book!

That means that you can start planning today! And I promise, that is something that you totally want to do. Because when Culinary Demonstrations, Seminars, and Other Special Events are announced, it’s usually just days before booking opens — and then they book up super fast. Time is of the essence when you’re ready to book.

And with the Festival celebrating its 20th year, we already are expecting that it’s going to be truly over the top.

Chef Gale Gand

Events with Celebrity Chefs, Like This One with Chef Gale Gand, Book Up Extra Fast

We expect an expanded Marketplace offering, plus all kinds of Special Extras.

What does all of this add up to? If you’re ever going to plan a trip to the Epcot Food and Wine Festival, then 2015 is the year to do it!!!

So, What Do You Get in the DFB Guide to the 2015 Epcot Food and Wine Festival e-Book?

As is the case with all of our DFB Guides, we’re making this edition downloadable for your convenience, and it’s a snap to install on all of your mobile devices. The 2014 version is a PDF guide with over 220 pages of detailed information about the Festival as well as photographs and customized bonus items, and we expect the 2015 guide to weigh in at a similar heft.

If you’re on a budget, you’ll love our advice on how to [Read more…]

News! 2015 Epcot Food and Wine Festival — More Booths and Special Events Confirmed!

It’s that time of year!

2015 Epcot Food and Wine Logo

Okay, so it’s not exactly time for the 2015 Epcot Food and Wine Festival juuuust yet (that’s September 25 – November 16th this year). But is IS time for LOTS of news to come out in anticipation of the event!

Just last week, we brought you word of NEW booths and dishes set to debut at this year’s Festival, along with the full Eat to the Beat line-up and lots of other great news!

Today we’re happy to confirm a few more booths that will be returning to this year’s Festival!

Fan favorites including Poland (and those terrific Pierogies), Belgium (Waffles!), and Hawaii (Kalua Pork Sliders, anyone?) will all return again this year as part of the Festival’s 20th Anniversary celebration.

Kielbasa & Potato Pierogie with Caramelized Onions and Sour Cream

Kielbasa & Potato Pierogie with Caramelized Onions and Sour Cream

The Kalua Pork Slider from the Hawaii Booth is a Family Favorite

The Kalua Pork Slider from the Hawaii Booth is a Family Favorite

Additionally, it has been announced that the Party for the Senses will be returning to the Festival every Saturday in October!

Party For the Senses

Party For the Senses

Not only that… aspiring [Read more…]