Review: Caramel Butter Bar at Karamell-Küche in Epcot’s Germany Pavilion

Karamell-Küche has become a destination all its own within Epcot’s Germany Pavilion.

And with good reason! Even among the Pavilion’s diverse offerings within Biergarten (a Table Service buffet complete with festive entertainment), Sommerfest (the Counter Service spot with NUDEL GRATINNNNN), and Bier Carts and HovelsKaramell-Küche focuses on one thing, and one thing only:

CARAMEL!

From seriously addictive Caramel Corn to Caramel Bacon Squares to the ah-mazing Caramel Pecan Bar (you gotta try it!), it’s hard to take in all the different iterations of caramel treats tucked within the Caramel Kitchen’s bakery case.

And speaking of different iterations…  I noticed a change to one of my favorite golden treats on my last visit when I spotted a sign for the Caramel Butter Bar. It was front and center ahead of what looked suspiciously like the old Caramel Covered Shortbread — also previously known as the Chewy Caramel Bar.

Caramel Butter Bar

Caramel Butter Bar

I wasn’t super concerned at first because this particular snack has been known by a few different names over the years, but basically remained a dependable combo of thick caramel poured atop and in between layers of buttery shortbread.

I figured I was good to go because the “new” Caramel Butter Bar looks… virtually identical to its predecessor. See? [Read more…]

Review: Via Napoli in Epcot’s Italy Pavilion

Via Napoli, how do I love thee? Shall we count the ways?

Seriously, I would, but it would take too long. Since this Table Service restaurant opened in Epcot’s Italy Pavilion seven years ago, I’ve been among its biggest fans. I love the decor, with those massive pizza ovens named for Italian volcanoes, the huge open space with arches and chandeliers, and the colorful frescoes on the walls and ceilings.

Oh, and did I mention there’s PIZZA involved, too? Via Napoli easily tops my list for serving up the Best Pizza in Disney World. It’s pretty much become one of those spots I visit whenever I have an excuse to do so.

On my most recent visit, we started with a couple of drinks. And there is no shortage of options at Via Napoli. There are cocktails, signature drinks, and, of course, lots of vino.

[Read more…]

Review: Frozen Ever After Dessert Party at Epcot!

These days, if there’s a Nighttime Spectacular at a Disney World park, there’s bound to be a Dessert Party to go with it! These extra-ticket events have become a popular splurge option for guests who want some sweets to go along with the fabulous nighttime shows (not to mention the ease of reserving a prime viewing spot without waiting an hour before the fireworks begin).

Recently I reviewed the Happily Ever After Dessert Party at Magic Kingdom; but the Frozen Ever After Dessert Party kicked off in Epcot in July, so I wanted to get in on that action to relax and unwind after my VERY full day covering the Best of the Fest at the 2017 Epcot Food and Wine Festival.

Frozen Ever After Dessert Party

Frozen Ever After Dessert Party

‘Cuz that’s how I roll. Check it out with me!

You may recall that for the past few years, guests could reserve the Sparkling IllumiNations Dessert Party, which also featured a dessert buffet and a reserved area for IllumiNations viewing.

But in July, Epcot replaced the Sparkling Party with the current Frozen theme. Now, look: we know some of you are completely Frozen-ed out. We hear you. But your kid may not be just yet. And this new party includes one neat perk. It still features plenty of desserts, and it still offers a great view of the show. But now, an after-hours ride on Frozen Ever After is included once the smoke clears from IllumiNations! [Read more…]

Review: New Drinks at La Cava del Tequila in the Mexico Pavilion at Epcot

We’ve sure been doing some talking about Epcot lately, what with the 2017 International Food and Wine Festival starting in less than a month (!!!) and some sneaky peeks happening over the past few weeks.

But lest we get lost in a sea of future Marketplace Booths, there is plenty happening in the here and now, too. And one of the places it’s ALWAYS happening is La Cava del Tequila inside the Mexico Pavilion of World Showcase.

This cave full of liquor features one of my absolute favorites with the Avocado Margarita, which remains near the top of my Drinking Around the World list. It’s creamy, surprisingly refreshing, and fully satisfying on a hot day. But if you’re looking to stray outside the list of tried and true favorites, with over 70 types of tequila you can easily find something new-to-you!

So let’s head on down to La Cava, inside the Mexico pyramid. And remember, you can queue up to grab your drinks To-Go; or you can wait for a table to open up at this cozy little spot.

Entrance into La Cava del Tequila

Entrance into La Cava del Tequila

But if you do choose to sit a spell, you can’t beat the atmosphere. Low lighting, lots of stone and brick work, beautiful murals showcasing the tequila-making process, and carved chairs help this place feel right at home in the beautiful Pavilion while still having a vibe unique to anywhere else in Disney World. It’s a great little getaway. [Read more…]

News: Gluten Free Eats at the 2017 International Food and Wine Festival at Epcot!

Epcot’s International Food and Wine Festival kicks off on August 31 with an epic and record-breaking number of food booths — 35 — representing cuisines and lifestyles from around the globe.

2016 Epcot Food and Wine Festival Banner

And as part of the Festival’s on-going commitment to providing awesome eats for guests of all kinds, many of the booths are featuring Gluten Free options! We expect to see lots of signage indicating the GF dishes. And of course cast members can also answer your food allergy questions.

[Read more…]

Review: Mochi Ice Cream and Hello Kitty Mochi in Epcot’s Japan Pavilion

We recently we dug our spoons once more into Kaki Gori, the Japanese Shaved Ice served at Kabuki Cafe. For years now, it’s been THE go-to treat as far as frozen options in the Japan Pavilion go, perfect for the cooling down in the current summer heat.

Japan Pavilion Pagoda

Japan Pavilion Pagoda

But did you know that Japan has got another — perhaps more authentic — frozen snack to keep your temperature down? It’s called Mochi. And though it’s been hanging around at the carts in the pavilion on-and-off for years, this additional cart we spotted recently seems to be mostly Mochi-centric. [Read more…]

Review: Kaki Gori Treats at the Japan Pavilion in Epcot’s World Showcase

Let’s be real: the temperatures in central Florida can be downright stultifying. But thankfully, Disney has provided many, many, many options for ice cold refreshment. And if you’re in the World Showcase at Epcot, tons of these awesome options are just a short walk away.

Monorail Epcot Flower and Garden

One of our favorites is located in the Japan Pavilion. Die-hards know it well — it’s Kaki Gori, and it’s a winner! Kabuki Cafe itself is super cool, featuring architectural details in keeping with its pavilion. You’ll find clay tile shingles on the roof, and paper lanterns hanging from the eaves.

Japan's Kaki Gori Stand

Japan’s Kaki Gori Stand

[Read more…]

New! Chocolate Caramel Swirl at Karamell-Küche in Epcot’s Germany

Karamell-Küche has been churning out ooey, gooey caramel treats in Epcot’s Germany Pavilion since it opened nearly SEVEN years ago.

(I started this blog just over 8 years ago, by the way. Time sure flies when you’re eating your way around Walt Disney World!)

Anyway, it’s all in the name: it’s the Caramel Kitchen, brought to us by Werther’s Caramel. It’s for those of us — and there are those of us ;) — who adore all things caramel maaaaybe even a bit more than the other candy darling: CHOCOLATE.

Now, that’s not to say that Karamell-Küche doesn’t have a few things in that golden bakery case for chocoholics. Not at all. You’ll find chocolate poured over a Caramel Apple, covering a caramel square, or topping Mickey’s ears on a Krispie Treat.

And now there’s one more that the chocolate lovers — and caramel lovers, of course! — can add to the list to try.

It’s the new Chocolate Caramel Swirl. 

Karamell Kuche Chocolate Swirl

Karamell Kuche Chocolate Caramel Swirl

Everything you need to know is found in the first glance: it’s a thick cut swirl of chocolate and caramel, finished with chocolate sprinkles surrounding the outer layer. Well, there is one more thing you’d probably like to know: the Chocolate Caramel Swirl comes in at $4.49 or a Disney Dining Plan snack credit. [Read more…]

Review: New Jumbo Pretzel in (where else?) Epcot’s Germany Pavilion

If one snack has become associated indelibly with Disney Parks on both the east and west coasts, it’s the Mickey Pretzel. I mean, it’s Mickey-shaped, it’s portable, it’s pretzel. (And now it comes with cheese sauce just about everywhere — so yum!)

But let’s be real: If you want an authentic pretzel experience, where the texture, color, and flavor combine for pretzel perfection, you gotta head over to the Germany Pavilion in World Showcase.

Sommerfest in the Germany Pavilion Outside View

Sommerfest in the Germany Pavilion Outside View

[Read more…]

Spotted: Italia Kitchen Merchandise in Epcot’s Italy Pavilion

Before a recent visit to Via Napoli in Epcot for a pizza, my husband and I had a few spare minutes before our Advance Dining Reservation. We decided to spend that extra time in La Bottega Italiana, one of the Italy Pavilion’s shops, where I happened upon some fun kitchen gear and other Italia-themed merchandise.

Pasta Mickey Italia Apron

Pasta Mickey Italia Apron

It had been a while since I’d popped in this particular store, so I’m not sure how long these have been around, but what stood out to me right away was this fun apron featuring Mickey formed out of various pasta shapes. [Read more…]