close to 100 food choices, where do you begin?Walt Disney World is back with its 23rd annual Epcot International Food and Wine Festival. With nearly three dozen food booths offering
Well, start with my list! Based largely on taste while factoring in price, I am pleased to share my annual listing of 10 great foods to try when visiting the festival.
Australia — Grilled Lamb Chop with Mint Pesto and Potato Crunchies (Gluten Free, $7.75) The lamb chop is back! Last year, it was a thin salty piece of lamb "T-bone" that was plain bad, but this year the lamb chop has returned to all its glory. The lamb chop is grilled, topped with mint pesto (but not too minty), and topped off with the potato chip pieces that you find at the end of your chip bag. I'm so happy it's back. *If you have a Disney Dining plan, make sure you use the snack credits on the more expensive dishes like this one. Snack credits can be used on F&W items, but you get the best deals on the higher-priced items.
Brazil — Crispy Pork Belly with Black Beans, Tomato and Onions (Gluten Free, $5.75) A fan favorite, this dish returns unchanged from last year because it was perfect to begin with. I mean, who doesn't love a niece piece of crispy, perfectly rendered pork belly? Adding in the tomatoes and onions provide a fresh flavor contrast to the very savory pork.
Greece — Spanakopita: Greek Spinach Pie (Vegan, $4.50) Vegans can rejoice again with this absolutely great tasting dish. Spinach baked in flaky phyllo dough is oh so good. By the way, there are about twenty-eight vegan dishes available at the Festival.
China — Beijing Roasted Duck Bao with Hoisin Sauce ($6.75) Bao buns are one of my favorite glutenous products. That sweet, warm white bread goes so well with almost anything. Place some shredded duck along with some hoisin sauce, red onion and crunchy noodles to make any already perfect piece of bread even more amazing.
Coastal Eats — Seared Scallops with Roasted Corn, Butterbean Succotash and Chili-chipotle Butter Sauce ($6) A great new addition to the menu this year is a nicely portioned dish featuring sea scallops. The scallops are not big, but for $6, you get three nicely sized fresh tasting scallops with a scrumptious sauce.
France — Croissant aux Escargots: Escargot Croissant with Garlic and Parsley ($5.75) If you never had Escargot, a.k.a. snails, this is the place to try it. I call Escargot oysters of the land because besides being coming from a shell, they are a little chewy and absorb whatever flavor they are cooked in. This happens to be the case when the Escargots are cooked in delicious garlic butter sauce and stuffed inside a super soft and flaky croissant. C'est Magnifique!
Flavors from Fire — Charred Chimichurri Skirt Steak on a Smoked Corn Cake with Pickled Vegetable Slaw and Cilantro Aïoli ($6.75) I absolutely enjoyed this dish. Everything paired so well and every part of the dish tasted amazing on its own. The dish would have went higher on the list, but the steak was a tad overcooked, which they do on the filet from Canada as well (but I can understand Disney not wanting to cook things medium rare).
The Cheese Studio Hosted by Boursin Cheese — Cheese Trio: Profiterole topped with Boursin Garlic and Fine Herbs Cheese and Orange Apricot Jam; Smoked Salmon Pinwheel with Boursin Shallot, and Chive Cheese and Everything Seasoning ($5.50) All flavorful soft cheeses are accompanied with a little bit of everything. It's a dish that truly expresses the versatility of cheese.
Active Eats — Loaded Mac 'n' Cheese with Nueske's Pepper Bacon, Cheddar Cheese, Peppers and Green Onions ($5) The mac and cheese is perfectly cooked with a nice proportion of cheese to macaroni. Add in some of the best bacon available and there is reason why this dish is back again.
Wine & Dine Studio — Butternut Squash Ravioli with Brown Butter Vinaigrette, Parmesan Cheese and Pumpkin Seeds ($4.50) Another great
vegan vegetarian dish that you can taste butternut sweet squash filling inside a soft pumpkin colored ravioli. Makes a good fall flavored addition.
Bonus: Hops & Barley — New Brunswick Slider: Slow-braised Beef Brisket “Pot Roast Style” with Horseradish Cream and Crispy Fried Onions on a Potato Roll with Pickled Vegetables on the side ($5.75) This dish really tastes like your momma's pot roast stuck on a potato roll. Everything goes together very well.
While I can list more, these dishes make the top of my list. I hope you get to try these dishes out because there are just so many to choose from. I also encourage you to try anything that sounds good to you because Epcot really has refined most of its dishes. So get out there... and then tell us your favorites!Tweet
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