It’s that time of year again for the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival. Well technically it’s been going on for almost 3 months at this point but I was finally able to get over there and visit some food booths plus I was able to find a collectible medallion that was released for the festival.
Before we get into those medallions lets take a tour around the festival. With all the construction currently going on at Epcot, there is not much at the front of the park. Usually, there is a topiary or signage after you scan your ticket into the park. That area has completely been torn down, and one side is behind construction walls. So they have moved most of that stuff out to the main entrance to the World Showcase.
I was immediately drawn towards the smell of grilling meats and found myself quickly waiting in line at the Flavors from Fire booth.
It was nice to see an actual grill out behind the booth. Most of the booths have the components of the food items made in a kitchen somewhere else in the park and then transported by cart to the booths to be constructed. That can make for a less than “fresh” feeling with the food items, but with the grills going strong I was hoping that wouldn’t be the case here.
There were a few items here that I wanted to try, but a few were the same from last year. We were trying to make a push for some new items this year. First, we tried the Steakhouse Blended Burger. It was a blended Beef and Mushroom slider with brie cheese fondue, arugula, and a truffle and blue cheese potato chip on a brioche bun.
The second item we got here was the Charred Chimichurri skirt steak on a smoked corn cake with pickled vegetable slaw and cilantro aioli. This was definitely our favorite item the entire day, even my 7-year-old daughter loved this one.
Not too far away we headed into a little courtyard that had a few booths all right beside each other. The one we checked out was Active Eats.
Above is a picture of the Loaded Macaroni & Cheese with Nueske’s pepper bacon, cheddar cheese, and leeks.
Just a few steps away was the Coastal Eats booth which had a menu designed around seafood.
This was an item my daughter (who is trying to be a little more adventurous with her foods) chose to try. This was the lump crab cake with Napa cabbage slaw and avocado-lemongrass cream.
We then started to head into the main World Showcase loop and just couldn’t pass up the Canada booth. They have had the same items for the last couple years due to being fan favorites, I do wish they would change it up a bit but it’s hard to argue with the items they do keep bringing back.
Pictured above is their famous Canadian cheddar and bacon soup serviced with a pretzel roll. This is the exact same soup available inside the Pavilion at Le Cellier steakhouse restaurant just smaller size. I was able to get a copy of the recipe from the restaurant years ago and make it at home every so often and it really doesn’t disappoint.
This next item is one of the more expensive throughout the entire festival but it’s a classic that is hard to pass up. Le Cellier wild mushroom beef filet mignon with truffle butter sauce. You can also see a small cup in the background which is one of our favorite ice wines from the Niagara on the Lake region of Canada (near Niagara Falls). It is a Vidal Icewine from the Chateau Des Charmes Vinyard.
With so many food booths it’s easy to start getting filled up before you really get into the heart of the festival. We decided to skip a few of the booths near the United Kingdom pavilion and France. I thought our daughter may want to try the Escargot Croissant in France but she said she wasn’t ready to try eating snails yet. Maybe next year!! Just beyond France was the Morocco booth with some interesting items.
First was a NY strip steak green shermoula flatbread with fresh radish and tomato salsa. This was really fantastic, kind of like a steak taco. The steak was a bit spicy but was definitely on the top of my list this year.
We broke one of our rules and had a sweet treat before finishing up our savory items but when I saw Chocolate Baklava I just had to get it. This is rolled phyllo dough with toasted almonds and dark chocolate sauce.
The next booth was over in the Japan pavilion and was something I had seen pictures of online, and video reviews where people were really enjoying it.
This was the Frothy Ramen, chilled noodles and dashi broth with a light foam topping. It looked really good and I’m a sucker for ramen noddles but whoa this was not for me. The flavor was extremely strong and overpowering for my palette. I’ve been waiting for someone else to review it online and say they didn’t like it but so far I haven’t seen one so maybe this is just not my thing.
Our kids were pretty stuffed by this thing and my wife was getting close to her limit as well. But of course, I wanted to keep going so we skipped a few more booths and stopped in Italy. You just can’t go wrong with some pasta.
Pictured above were the Ravioli carbonara, parmesan, and pecorino ravioli, egg yolk, cream, and bacon. The presentation we got in the little paper boat was a bit of a mess, but the flavor was really good and helped cleans the Frothy ramen taste off my tongue.
After that pretty heavy pasta dish, I was ready to call it a day and wasn’t sure how I would be able to comfortably get back to our car. As we finished the last bit of the showcase we decided to head into the Port of Entry store to see what kind of Festival merchandise was available.
As my family looked around picking out t-shirts, Christmas tree ornaments and maybe a bottle of wine or two, I was drawn to an area on the opposite side of the store. Earlier this year during the Flower and Garden festival they had released specially designed coins that you can read out here. Fellow collectors had been wondering since then if Disney would continue this with other festivals and sure enough, here it was for the Food and Wine.
The cost for these coins was the same as before (thankfully!) at $5 for one coin or $10 for three. So if you want all four that will run you $15. Yes, it’s a bit pricey but these designs are just so fun it’s hard to say no.
There are quite a few coins on display in the center second of the machine. Other machines around Disney have coins in here spinning on little risers but this machine didn’t have that and instead was just laying flat.
Here is a close up of the entire set. They have designs of Chef Mickey, Chef Remy, Chef Minnie, and Chef Figment.
On the back of each coin is the same design regardless of the front image you select. It’s the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival 2019 logo which I really like.
With my $15 souvenirs packed away, I headed over to my family that had picked out quite a bit more in other merchandise but that’s okay. It’s a fun festival to enjoy each fall, and we always like trying new food items we wouldn’t normally try. The Festival runs from August 29, 2019 through November 23, 2019 so you still have a few weeks left to visit. Then we get into the Festival of the Holidays and I wonder if we can count on another new set of collectible medallions?