Ready for the next Epcot festival? The Walt Disney World Resort today announced the dates for the 2022 Epcot International Food & Wine Festival.
Epcot's original festival will run the same weeks as it did last year - starting July 14 and continuing through November 19. More than 25 Global Marketplace will sell food and drinks from nations and regions around the world, though not all of those booths will be open at the festival's start. Disney will release menus and the line-up for the festival's Eat to the Beat Concert Series later, as we get closer to the festival's start.
With Epcot's Flower & Garden running through July 4, the Food & Wine schedule gives Walt Disney World visitors just nine days in early July to take in the unique experience of a festival-free Epcot. The park's traditional fall and spring festivals nearly have converged in summer. And after the the Food & Wine Festival concludes in November, get ready for the expected return of Epcot's Festival of the Holidays later that month, completing the nearly year-round schedule of festivals at Epcot.
Epcot celebrates its 40th anniversary this October 1. Sometime before that, the park will welcome its next attraction, the Guardians of the Galaxy: Cosmic Rewind indoor "storycoaster" that has taken over the former Universe of Energy pavilion. Epcot's first roller coaster officially is scheduled to open this "summer," but a Disney executive leaked that the ride would be open by Memorial Day, and - perhaps not coincidentally - Disney has scheduled an Epcot press event in early May. Meanwhile, Epcot is opening a new restaurant in the heart of the park.
So even in addition to the nearly-persistent festivals, there's plenty going on this year at Epcot.
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As much as I love Food & Wine, it can also be one of the worst times crowd wise to hit World Showcase and that was before they added some major attractions. It's good to have this back, just sometimes barely able to move in some spots with folks going nuts for the offerings.
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I'm hoping that as pandemic restrictions and limitations are slowly rolled back that Disney will bring back the special events and seminars/demonstrations that made the EPCOT Food and Wine Festival head and shoulders above the competition. Yes, most guests interact with the Festival through the booths and concert series, but it was the special meals, interactions with industry professionals, and exclusive festival events that really set the EPCOT Food and Wine Festival apart.
Some of our favorite memories from the EPCOT Food and Wine Festival are from these special events like the Party for the Senses, Brewer's Dinner with Jim Koch, and a seemingly endless list of wine seminars and cooking demonstrations we attended at the Odyssey, CommuniCore, and Wonders of Life (especially when they used to be free and first come-first served).