Can you believe it's already been a YEAR since we posted about EPCOT's International Food and Wine Festival?? Where does the time go? 2018's Food and Wine Festival was just as marvelous as prior years. However, we did remind ourselves of a very harsh truth. Orlando is just TOO hot in the summer. For anyone who doesn't know, Parker and I used to live in Orlando while working for SeaWorld and Disney. One of the contributing factors to us leaving was the brutal heat and humidity. It wasn't the deciding factor, but it made the list of cons for sure. We thought we'd be okay doing a trip in mid-September, but, alas, we were wrong. Henceforth, we'll be planning our trips from October-March. (Obviously so we won't miss any of the EPCOT fests).
This isn't going to be a full review of all of EPCOT's Food and Wine offerings like we've done in the past. The honest truth is there is just SO much to try and SO much to review. So, we thought we'd just make a post highlighting some of our favorites from this year's festival. Of course, there are still tons of other booths and items, but here's our top list from 2018:
The Roasted Irish Sausage with Colcannon Potatoes and Onion Gravy is always good. This year we were very pleasantly surprised by the Guinness Baileys Shake.
We could've probably ordered two more of the shakes.
The Warm Irish Cheddar Cheese and Stout Dip with Irish Brown Bread gets an honorable mention because it isn't our favorite, but it's still pretty good.
Honestly, I feel like we could write a blog post entirely of how much we love the Canada booth at Food and Wine. Every year they deliver amazingly tender filet and of course CHEESE SOUP! They know the way to our hearts.
Canadian Cheddar Cheese and Bacon Soup served with a Pretzel Roll & Le Cellier Wild Mushroom Beef Filet Mignon with Truffle-Butter Sauce. (And a gorgeous Canadian backdrop).
10 out of 10 would recommend NOT skipping Canada.
The Cheese Studio
Hosted by Boursin Cheese
On the top of our desserts list was the Maple Bourbon Boursin Cheesecake with Maple Bourbon Cream, Caramel and Pecan Crunch from the Cheese Studio. This cheesecake WAS SO GOOD. I am a huge fan of cheesecake, so I feel like no matter what I would've loved it. But, Parker is not so much and he really enjoyed this one, so you know it's good!
Another good repeat from last year was the Loaded Mac ‘n’ Cheese with Nueske’s® Pepper Bacon, Cheddar Cheese, Peppers and Green Onions.
One of Parker's all-time favorites.
This year's festival also brought back the Coastal Eats booth with all of the same food offerings. We enjoyed all three last year and decided to get all three again this year.
Although the crab cake was not as good as we remembered, the scampi and scallops were still some of our favorite items.
Baked Shrimp Scampi Dip with Sourdough Baguette,
Lump Crab Cake with Napa Cabbage Slaw and Avocado-lemongrass Cream,
Seared Scallops with Roasted Corn, Butterbean Succotash and Chili-chipotle Butter Sauce.
Flavors From Fire
Last year we really enjoyed the piggy wings and the Smoked Corned Beef. This year we just sprung for the corned beef. It's a top 15 item at the festival for us.
Smoked Corned Beef with Warm Crispy Potatoes, Pickled Onions and Blonde Ale Beer Fondue featuring BelGioioso Romano and American Grana Cheeses
The Light Lab is one of our favorite additions from last year's festival for four reasons.
1) It's inside.
2) It's got tasty drinks and fun experiments.
3) It's got cool black lights and the colors overhead are constantly changing.
4) It's inside.
This year we tried the Phosphorescent Phlight which featured 3 unique slushies. Each was a different color with a different glow cube in it, and you had to guess what flavor each color was. Although we thought the guessing would be a bit more challenging, the slush was good and exactly what we needed to combat the Orlando heat.
And this pretty drink is what happens when you mix blue and purple.
The number of pictures we took in and of the Light Lab should tell you how long we spent inside their AC.
Of course Italy is always a favorite booth. There's always at least one item that ends up being a top 5. This year is was the rigatoni pasta.
Trust me when I say that this photo does not do this dish justice.
Mezzi Rigatoni- Vodka Sauce, Crispy Pancetta and Parmesan Cheese.
And although the pizza is not technically part of Food and Wine, we had to try it because it's new! The Italy pavilion in EPCOT now has the Via Napoli Pizza Window! The window currently offers three types of pizza, a couple of appetizers, and some beer, wine, and cocktails.
This pizza is very different than the pizza served at the sit-down version of Via Napoli,
but we enjoyed it all the same.
So, those were just a few of our favorites at the 2018 EPCOT International Food and Wine Festival! There were plenty of other things we tried and wanted to try, but there just isn't enough time! (or room in our stomachs)
We'll close by, of course, asking to hear from everyone what their favorites were of this year's festival! Or, if you have plans to attend later in the year, what are you most looking forward to? You still have plenty of time left to enjoy 2018's Food and Wine Fest!
We will also share a few construction photos of the new Ratatouille attraction and the Disney Skyliner we took while at EPCOT between Sep 12-15.
See you next year, Food and Wine!
Parker and Brittany Ruhmel- Lovers of all things food and theme park related!