Review: Epcot Food & Wine Festival Premium Package, and Food and Wine Festival Late Nights LIVE! Event

The 2014 Epcot Food and Wine Festival is underway, and this year marks the debut of several new options for Festival guests. We’re going to cover two of the most popular — and most expensive — today!

The Epcot Food & Wine Festival Premium Package is available exclusively to Disney Resort guests (as well as guests at Swan & Dolphin and Golden Oak), and the Food and Wine Festival — Late Nights LIVE! after hours party, which is available for purchase to all guests.

Premium Package credential, gift card, and themed MagicBand

Premium Package credential, gift card, and themed MagicBand

Today we’re breaking down the components into a few sections beginning with the Food & Wine Premium Package. At the end of the post, we’ll go over our thoughts regarding value for the price of these options.

Epcot Food & Wine Festival Premium Package

There are three main components to the Food & Wine Premium Festival Package available for Disney Resort guests: In-Room Amenities, dedicated Food & Wine Festival Premium Package Areas at Epcot, and entrance into the Epcot Food & Wine Late Nights Live! party. The package costs $199/person.

In-room Amenities

I was definitely curious to see the in-room amenities included in the package, though I had some idea from the official description from Disney: “a select bottle of wine (for Guests over 21 years of age), a festival wine glass and delicious chocolate truffles.”

I arrived to my resort a few hours early, hoping for the possibility of an early check-in. I was kindly accommodated, but since I arrived early, I actually picked up my gift bag at Concierge Services at the front desk. So, if you are participating in this package and are also an early check-in hopeful (before 3:00PM), that’s just something to keep in mind. With that said, I received everything in a thermal Food & Wine tote.

Amenities Bag

Amenities Bag

Let’s check off the list, starting with the wine, which was a bottle of “Sogno d’ Italia (Dream of Italy)” Chianti. It was one of the bottles “made exclusively for Disney Parks.”

Dream of Italy Chianti

Dream of Italy Chianti

Sogno d'Italia label

Sogno d’Italia label

Guests can find this wine sold in the Italy Pavilion (we’ll have a “math breakdown” later on to discuss more of the value).

A Food and Wine Festival souvenir stemless wine glass is part of the package as well.

Souvenir wine glass

Souvenir wine glass

Four truffles came in an edible box made of dark chocolate, topped with a white chocolate themed decoration.

Truffle box made of chocolate

Truffle box made of chocolate

Flavors included salted caramel, cherry, ganache, and white chocolate.

Truffles

Truffles

The in-room amenities are fun, and it did feel a little like a holiday, opening gifts upon arrival.

Gifts inside the amenities bag

Gifts inside the amenities bag

But it may be the next three items that are of the most interest: a Food & Wine themed MagicBand, a $50 Disney gift card, and the Premium Package “credential” lanyard, which grants guests access to exclusive Premium Package Areas within the Festival.

Premium Package credential, gift card, and themed MagicBand

Premium Package credential, gift card, and themed MagicBand

The credential is a lanyard to wear around the Festival, and while we’ll explore its design and function more in the next section, it’s worth noting that one side is printed with the dates the guest can access the Premium Package areas.

The MagicBand is decorated with the current signature artwork for the Food and Wine Festival.

Themed MagicBand

Themed MagicBand

Themed MagicBand

Themed MagicBand

Finally, there is a $50 Disney gift card. It’s the [Read more…]

DFB Reader Spotlight: Make Your Own Epcot Food and Wine Festival Tray!

So, you all know that you’re the best readers in the history of blogging. Here’s a little story sent in via email (with pictures, of course) to prove it.

As many of you are aware, I highly advocate bringing your own tray to Epcot for the Food and Wine Festival every year. After all, there usually isn’t a great place to sit and eat at every booth; so it can be helpful to have a method for carrying all of your goodies and drinks around with you as you’re looking for a good stopping point in the shade. As it turns out, this is true for the rest of the parks as well!

Disney Food Blog Reader, Jocelyn Martins, explored the Epcot Food and Wine Festival (and other Walt Disney World parks) with her own Disney Food Blog Tray!

Screen Shot 2014-09-25 at 2.35.04 PM

That’s right; she took our unique bumper sticker and attached it to the food tray she brought from home. Totally L.O.V.E. that she brought it to Disney with her!!!

Jocelyn reports that she loved using the tray and apparently other guests admired it, too. She was asked several times where to get one! Take a look…

DFB Tray with Eats and Drinks

“I had to grab just one more pumpkin ice cream macaron sandwich, but couldn’t pass on the martini either… thank goodness I had my own DFB Tray to balance on the stroller!” (We knew we loved her.) Head to L’Artisan des Glaces in Epcot’s France for your own ice cream treats.

Pumpkin Ice Cream Macaron Sandwich and Coconut-White Chocolate Ice Cream Martini with Whipped Cream Vodka

Pumpkin Ice Cream Macaron Sandwich and Coconut-White Chocolate Ice Cream Martini with Whipped Cream Vodka

“Luckily I knew  from the DFB to look for the Harambe Popcorn Cart because our most-awesome-ess server, Neil, at our Tusker House Breakfast had worked there forever and had no idea where I could find the Jungle Juice Slushies.”

DFB tray for Jungle Juice Slushies & Rum

DFB tray for Jungle Juice Slushies & Rum

Jocelyn then used her homemade DFB Tray to [Read more…]

Epcot Food & Wine Festival Food Pictures and Review: Brazil and Puerto Rico Marketplace Booths

We are continuing our LIVE coverage from the first week of the 2014 Epcot Food and Wine Festival!

Welcome to the Epcot Food and Wine Festival!

Welcome to the Epcot Food and Wine Festival!

We’ve been busy eating at the various Marketplaces and attending events to bring you lots of good information.

And today, we’re ready to offer you the first in-depth look at two booths that are crowd favorites — Brazil and Puerto Rico.

Let’s go!

The Brazil Marketplace Booth

The Brazil Marketplace returned last year after a brief hiatus, and wasted no time establishing itself as a favorite stop on festival guests’ trip around the World. And this year, it’s back again on a big ol’ plot of World Showcase land all its own (with a WATERFALL! and LIVE MUSIC!).

2014 Brazil Marketplace Booth

2014 Brazil Marketplace Booth

This is the old Belgium location (Belgium has been booted next door), so there’s a seating area set up covered with colorful flags.

Gorgeous Seating Area for Brazil

Gorgeous Seating Area for Brazil

There’s a little waterfall (which the Cast Member made sure I knew about; they’re super proud of it). And if you’re lucky, you might catch some live Brazilian music while you’re there.

Brazil Marketplace Scenery

Brazil Marketplace Scenery

The food is pretty much all new, except for the pork belly. And the drinks include some good offerings.

2014 Brazil Menu

2014 Brazil Menu

We were interested to see a new seafood dish debut at the Brazil Marketplace. The Moqueca de Pescado features responsibly farm-raised Regal Springs Tilapia. It’s flavored with a Coconut Lime Sauce and is served on a bed of steamed Rice.

You guys know I’m not a HUGE seafood eater, but some of the festival’s offerings this year have made a liar out of me…including this one. I really enjoyed it! The dish is light with good flavor. But I was shocked that after I took my first tentative bite of fish, I actually went back for more. Red-letter day for me, my friends. ;-D

Moqueca de Pescado Regal Springs Premium Tilapia with Coconut Lime Sauce and Steamed Rice

Moqueca de Pescado Regal Springs Premium Tilapia with Coconut Lime Sauce and Steamed Rice

One of 2013’s most popular dishes, Crispy Pork Belly with Black Beans, Tomato, and Cilantro, returns this year. While the 2013 version also featured Avocado in the mix, we aren’t really missing it. The Pork Belly stands on its own just fine!

Crispy Pork Belly with Black Beans, Tomato, and Cilantro

Crispy Pork Belly with Black Beans, Tomato, and Cilantro

One of our early favorites this year is the [Read more…]

News! Food-Themed Disney Dooney & Bourke Pattern to Make Its Debut During Epcot Food and Wine Festival

Happy Friday from the 2014 Epcot Food and Wine Festival! We are LIVE in Walt Disney World, bringing you all the food, photos, and details from what promises to be the best Festival yet!

Just in time to celebrate opening day of the Festival, Disney and Dooney & Bourke have some pretty awesome news for foodie fashionistas. Today, we’re sharing with you pics of their brand new collection — and like everything else right now — it’s all about the food!

Dooney & Bourke Food and Wine Festival Pattern -- Up Close

Dooney & Bourke Food and Wine Festival Pattern

The understated collection, featuring colorful depictions of Chef Mickey on a black background, celebrates the much loved Festival, which kicks off it’s 19th year today! Your favorite chef is busy whipping up something extra special in the kitchen!

The collection will be available for purchase beginning September 29 at the Festival Center within Epcot. Choose from four different styles, including the on-the-go Wristlet and the practical Crossbody. Or go bigger with the [Read more…]

2014 Epcot Food and Wine Festival Booth Prices and Photos of ALL Food Menu Items Now Available (And More of Our Favorites!)

We’re having a blast reporting to you LIVE from the 2014 Epcot Food and Wine Festival!

Welcome to the Epcot Food and Wine Festival!

Welcome to the Epcot Food and Wine Festival!

It’s super hot, sweaty, humid, rainy, (insert crappy weather term here) at the Fest so far this year, but that would never stop us from #EatingAllTheFood at every one of the Marketplace Booths at this year’s festival.

New Food and Wine Festival Passports

New Food and Wine Festival Passports

Today, I just wanted to remind you and yours (who I know are planning a Festival visit or eight this year) that we’ve got photos of EVERY food menu item (and most of the bevvies as well…except for the $32 Dom flute…I’m totally not buying that) and ALL menus/pricing at the Festival.

Pics and prices are all up on our booth pages, which you can find here!

2014 Farm Fresh Marketplace Booth Menu - Click for larger image

2014 Farm Fresh Marketplace Booth Menu – Click for larger image

Now, we shared with you on Friday our must-eat favorites from the Festival so far, but mentioned that we had about 17 new menu items that we really loved this year and had to narrow down for the post.

New Brazil Marketplace

New Brazil Marketplace

At the request of several readers, here are a few more of our “you. must. eat. this.” choices at the 2014 Epcot Food and Wine Festival…

Pao de Queijo — Brazil
This cheese bread is simple and delicious. Imagine a savory bun…filled with sharp cheese…an you’re there. If you get a good batch, it should be soft, moist, and veeeeeery cheesy!

Brazilian Cheese Bread

Brazilian Cheese Bread

Cheese Bread Cross Section

Cheese Bread Cross Section

Mango Green Tea with Popping Bubbles — China
What we loved about this was that the “bubbles” weren’t chewy tapioca — they were little bursts of strong mango flavor/juice!

Mango green tea with popping bubbles

Mango green tea with popping bubbles

Crème brûlée caramel fleur de sel — France
A new twist on an old classic, the [Read more…]

Review: MUST-EAT New Dishes at the 2014 Epcot Food and Wine Festival

It’s finally here! We are reporting to you LIVE from the 2014 Epcot Food and Wine Festival!

We’ve been busy for the last couple of days gathering information and pricing for you for every one of the Marketplace Booths at this year’s festival.

Epcot Food and Wine Festival

We’ve also had the pleasure of Eating and Drinking Our Way Around the World! For pictures of every dish at this year’s festival, be sure to click over to our Marketplace Booth Page. Click through the links to see all of the pictures of your favorite dishes, plus plenty of new items to try!

It’s shaping up to be one of the most delicious Epcot Food and Wine Festivals ever! But after a day of tasting (and tasting, and tasting), we’ve definitely come up with some favorites. Let’s take a look at our top dishes from around the World Showcase this year…

Nueske’s® Pepper Bacon Hash with Sweet Corn, Potatoes, Hollandaise and Pickled Jalapeño At Farm Fresh

As soon as you get anywhere near the Farm Fresh booth, you can smell it. Nueske’s® Pepper Bacon Hash with Sweet Corn, Potatoes, Hollandaise and Pickled Jalapeño – a strong, smokey smell of bacon laced with the sweet-spicy onions and jalapeños.

We’ve been hearing about this fun take on “breakfast for dinner” for a while now, but we were blown away by the execution of it. The dish has everything — super flavorful Bacon, Potatoes cooked perfectly (soft and fluffy in the middle and crispy on the edges), and velvety Hollandaise that stands in for the Egg in the dish, not to mention the sweet corn and spicy peppers.

Bacon Hash

Bacon Hash

Just so you know, I have to eat so much during the festival that I never fully finish any of the dishes. This one? This one I finished completely and wished it made sense for me to order MORE!

If you only try one dish this year, I think this should be the one.

Fresh Baked Carrot Cake with Craisins® and Cream Cheese Icing at Hops & Barley

We hadn’t been wowed by the Fresh Baked Carrot Cake with Craisins® and Cream Cheese Icing when we’ve tried it at recent preview events. It was good and all, but nothing to write home about.

But the version of the dish that we tried today at the Hops & Barley Booth was a show-stopper. And no, I’m not even exaggerating a teeny bit.

The Cake itself is [Read more…]

2014 Epcot Food and Wine Festival Booth Updates: Craft Beer Moves Into Odyssey Center, and More

We’re headed in to the “soft opening” of the 2014 Epcot Food and Wine Festival today, and we’re gathering some v. cool news that we want to share with our readers!

Food and Wine Festival 2014

Stay tuned the rest of this week for fun news and live updates as well as updated food pictures from the World Showcase Marketplace Booths!

And speaking of those Booths, there are a few updates that we have to share with you that are NEW for 2014. Let’s start with beer…

Craft Beer “Booth” Moves Into Odyssey Center

Remember, like, two years ago when Disney said they were going to do a “lounge” in the Odyssey Center during the Food and Wine Festival…and it never happened? Well, this may be the year!

The Odyssey Center is typically only open for private events, but we’ve seen it used as an event space during past Festivals. This year, they’ve moved the entire Craft Beer booth into the massive space!

Craft Beer Sign

Craft Beer Sign

We’ll have more details (and inside photos) [Read more…]

Epcot Food and Wine Festival Opening Week — Celebrate With Savings!

Tomorrow officially kicks off the 2014 Epcot Food and Wine Festival! We’ve been walking the park and catching glimpses of all of the preparations, and I can’t wait! So what better way to celebrate the longest Epcot Food and Wine Festival ever than to offer you an extra-special deal on The DFB Guide to the 2014 Epcot International Food & Wine Festival e-Book! If you don’t have your copy yet, NOW’S the time!

2014 Food and Wine Guide 3D

With over 220 pages and tons of special features, it includes everything you need to prepare for this year’s event.

And to kick of the Festival the right way, we have a deep discount option for DFB readers. You can get the new mini-guide for $4 off the regular price for a limited time — just use code OpeningDay at the check-out!

You can also apply the savings to the DFB Food & Wine Bundle. Enter code OpeningDay at the check-out, and enjoy $4 off the price of two of our most popular books — The DFB Guide to the 2014 Epcot International Food & Wine Festival e-Book and the The DFB Guide to Walt Disney World Dining 2014!

The DFB Guide to the 2014 Epcot Food & Wine Festival e-Book

The DFB Guide to the 2014 Epcot Food & Wine Festival e-Book features all the info you need to know before you attend the Food and Wine Festival, from what’s NEW this year to touring strategies — and a new section with top tips on how to use MyMagic+ at the Epcot Food and Wine Festival!

And with the opening of the Festival, there’s no better time than the present to get your copy. Our exclusive daily schedule of events is the most efficient way to plan your Festival strategy.

With a detailed schedule of seminars and events for every single day of the Festival, it’s a quick, easy way to decide what activities and events you want to check out! Don’t waste time flipping between web pages, PDFs, and websites — just find the date you need and we’ve got it all right there in front of you. Just like that!

Screen Shot 2014-09-17 at 11.17.33 PM

As always, we’ve made this guide instantly downloadable for your convenience, and easily installed on your mobile devices. It’s a PDF guide with

[Read more…]

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 [Read more…]

Tip From the DFB Guide: 2014 Epcot Food and Wine Festival Eat to the Beat Playlist

What’s better than Eating and Drinking Around the World?

2014 Food and Wine Guide 3D

How about enjoying the sounds of some of your favorite musical acts from the 80s and 90s while you’re doing it?

The Eat to the Beat Concert Series showcases great sounds from these decades as you enjoy the 2014 Epcot Food and Wine Festival, and the DFB Guide to the 2014 Epcot Food and Wine Festival includes an awesome way to stay entertained while you’re planning for your trip!

Just one of the great extras in the book is this fun list of hits from all of the featured performing acts. In addition to the playlist, the book features a full, day by day schedule of every event at the Festival; touring strategies so you don’t miss a thing no matter how long you’ll be at the Festival; full menus (with hundreds of food photos) for each Marketplace Booth; and more! Pick up your copy today using code CHEFS at the checkout for a discount!

So, whether you’re training for the Tower of Terror 10 Miler — or just a marathon session of tasting your way around World Showcase, download this playlist to get the party started!

2014 Eat to the Beat Playlist

Jo Dee Messina

1. Bring on the Rain – iTunesAmazon

2. Heads Carolina, Tails California — iTunesAmazon

3. Burn – iTunesAmazon

Pointer Sisters

1. I’m So Excited — iTunesAmazon

2. He’s So Shy – iTunesAmazon

3. Jump (For My Love) – iTunesAmazon

The Commodores

1. Easy – Amazon

2. Lady (You Bring Me Up) – Amazon

3. Nightshift – Amazon

Christopher Cross

1. Sailing – iTunesAmazon

2. Ride Like the Wind – iTunesAmazon

3. Best That You Can Do – iTunesAmazon

Hanson

1. MMMBop – iTunesAmazon

2. Where’s the Love – iTunesAmazon

3. I Will Come to You – iTunesAmazon

Air Supply

1. All Out of Love – iTunesAmazon

2. The One That You Love – iTunesAmazon

3. Making Love Out of Nothing – iTunesAmazon

[Read more…]