Tag Archives: Trip Planning

Beef & Booze: My Food & Wine Festival Menu Selections, Part Three

20 Aug

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If you haven’t already, please check out Part One and Part Two. Now it’s time for my final menu picks!

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Don’t shush me, Trey. You look stupid.

Craft Beers– Beer

Man, am I ever getting beer-ed out. There sure is a lot of beer for something called the food and WINE festival. I’m not a wine person, so I really oughtn’t complain. It’s the principle!! You can buy a souvenir mug here, so I’ll probably do that. I may give the Punkin Ale here a try, although I’m not sure I want a giant mug of it. I’d probably go with the 312 Urban Wheat Ale, then maybe try a flight some other time if I feel so inclined.

Germany– Bratwurst and Altenmünster Oktoberfest

I’m pretty pumped for this stand because I like a lot of German food however I never get any in WDW because the smell in that place makes me gaggy. I’m very sensitive to smells and it’s just too much for me in there. Nobody likes a Gaggy Clarf. Sadly, I don’t really like ham much so I’m not interested in the Schinkennudeln, which at least LOOKS tasty to me, even if I don’t want to eat it. So I will opt for the bratwurst here, which comes on a pretzel roll with some kicky mustard. Can’t go wrong with that! Wine and bratwurst sounds unappetizing if not downright disturbing, so Altenmünster Oktoberfest it is!

Hawaii– Kālua pork slider and Big Wave Golden Ale

This is another one I am really looking forward to. The Kālua pork slider with sweet and sour Dole Pineapple chutney and spicy mayonnaise sounds and looks amazing. I’m intrigued by the Pineapple wine, but it sounds like a bit much. I’ll opt for the Big Wave Golden Ale.

Hops and Barley– Ugh.

If I buy a water bottle, will they give me a stamp?

Ireland– Kerrygold cheese selection

Land of ire. Seafood is out, and warm chocolate pudding sounds like the last thing I’m going to want sitting in my stomach, so that leaves me with the Kerrygold cheese selection. It includes reserve cheddar, Dubliner with Irish Stout and Skellig. I’d consider myself a big cheese fan, but I usually don’t stray from the same cheese your five year old likes to munch on. Give me a bowl of mild shredded cheddar and I’m happy as can be. The point is, my cheese palate is coarse and unrefined. These cheeses aren’t especially deep cuts, but they aren’t something I would typically order either. With that in mind, I’m (perhaps sadly) filing this under “Trying Something New”. I’ll probably pass on the beverages here, unless I need a caffeine pick-me-up.

Italy– Ravioli alla caprese, Cannoli al cioccolato and Procecco

No a-spicy meat-a-balls? The hell? Oh well, the ravioli alla caprese sounds good to me! I am sure some pasta will be a nice change of pace from all the meat-heavy selections I’ve made elsewhere. And I will not be leaving the cannoli because it sounds damn good. Round it out with the procecco and I’ve got a nice little mini-meal going.

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If it’s not in a cup, I send it back.

Mexico– No estoy segura

The shrimp and rib eye tacos really don’t interest me, especially when I can easily (and most definitely will!) get some tastier Mexican snacks over in the Mexico Pavillion. Why aren’t they serving Tecate here? Truly a shame. For me, specifically. I’ll probably grab a sangria or try the sweet corn cheesecake. I’d opt for the Mango Strawberry margarita but I can’t stand frozen drinks with strawberry. I really wish they were offering something a bit more unique in a margarita here. I wish last year’s Mango Habanero had stuck around.

Patagonia– Beef Skewer

Looks like more beef for me at this stand. The beef empanada sounds good, but a little too similar to the kefta pocket. Instead, I think I’ll opt for the grilled beef skewer with chimichurri sauce and boniato purée. If I decide to get a drink here, it’ll be the sparkling brut. Now, I’m used to drinking very fine options like Andre, so I may be setting myself up for disappointment. I’ll probably take a break from the booze at this stand.

Poland– Kielbasa and potato pierogi and Frozen Szarlotka

Kielbasa and potato pierogi with caramelized onions and sour cream. Yes. All day long, yes. Although, I’m pretty sure pierogis belong in a Pittsburgh booth. That is based solely on the fact that I went to a Pirates game once and they had people dressed in pierogi costumes racing. As you do. I’ve only had the freezer kind before, so I’m excited to try one that’s better quality. The frozen Szarlotka is an apple pie flavored vodka drink of some kind. Just go with it.

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TR and a pierogi taking a selfie because of course.

Puerto Rico– Friturias and sangria

If there is not a full-blood boricua working at this booth with a tattoo that says as much on his arm, I am throwing a fit. He doesn’t have to tell me, “Mami, I need ya”. He doesn’t even have to whisper, “Te quiero”. But the tattoo is non-negotiable. So, what will I be eating when he takes me with him back to Puerto Rico I MEAN when I go to this booth lol sorry got lost in el ritmo. Definitely the friturias. What in the heck are friturias? Apparently they are sorullitos (sweet polenta fries) and bolitas de queso (cheese fritter with mayo ketchup). It looks and sounds delicious, even if the mayo ketchup does come in creepy capsules. I’m getting the sangria because it is Gasolina sangria and I want to so badly to yell, “DAME MAS GASOLINA!”. I won’t, but I’ll think about it and chuckle. And just an aside, googling “Puerto Rican men” is also very, erm, fruitful. Lots of Adam Rodriguez. He can’t take me back to Puerto Rico, though. Not without that tattoo.

Terra– Whatever.

Last and perhaps least, Terra. I’m really happy for you kooky vegans. You deserve a booth. You do. And I know it’s sponsored by Gardein so that’s why they use their products in every dish. I just wish there was some sort of plain vegetable dish here. I’m not a big fan of meat substitutes, and even the damn cupcake is topped with tofu. Hey, they should’ve made it a beet cupcake with tofu icing! Disney owns Doug. SYNERGY! Or something. Anyway. Two uninspired (but vegan!) wines, a gluten-free and pretty meh-sounding beer, and watermelon juice. I’d really prefer to just eat a nice slice of watermelon. An entire glass of the juice just seems like overkill. In any case, I’m not sure what I will end up getting from this booth. Maybe I’ll just get some fake chicken and throw it at a duck or something.

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Well, there you have it! Before I close, I wanted to share a few sites that have really helped me with my Food and Wine planning and my menu choices. The first is THIS post at wdwtools.com. It’s titled “Bobotie for Beginners: Food & Wine Booth Menus Decoded!” and it goes through each menu with descriptions of some of the more obscure menu items as well as details about the different alcoholic beverages. How handy! They saved me a lot of time I’d have spent googling different beers and wines.

The second is EatingWDW.com. Of all the sites I’ve been to, I enjoy the tone and presentation of this one the most. There are posts for each of last year’s booths with photos of the menus and the food, as well as their personal opinions. It’s thorough but not too clinical and I appreciate having their assessment of the different dishes as I’m looking at the menus. They also have lots of resources and info regarding this year’s festival and will surely have posts up as soon as it begins!

Well, with that I have made my choices. And holy CRAP that is a shit-ton of food. This may become the first WDW vacation where I actually come back fatter than I left. I think I gained five pounds just writing it. If you’re going to be there when I am, please drop me a line! I’d love to meet-up. I cannot wait to go and try everything and report back. Don’t forget to follow me on Twitter and Instagram if you’re not already, as I’m sure I’ll be sharing some comments here and there live from my vacation.

Are you going to the Food and Wine Festival this year? What booths and dishes are you most excited about?

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Beef & Booze: My Food & Wine Festival Menu Selections, Part Two

18 Aug

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Are you ready for another bunch of my Food & Wine Festival menu picks? (I really wish I’d used “picks” instead of “selections” in the title, but it’s too late now) If you didn’t read Part One, check it out HERE! Now let’s dive in!

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I will work Trey Songz into every post, so help me!

Refreshment Port–Dole Whip with crème de cacao white, I guess

This name just really confuses me. It’s basically a Dole booth, so why is it given that dull and generic-sounding name? Anyway. I’m sad they got rid of the pineapple fritters they had last year, as I was pretty intrigued by them. Alas. I’ll just get the overpriced Dole Whip with booze. Maybe the slushy Dragon Berry thing. Dole Whip in Epcot just seems plain wrong, but sometimes you have to just suck it up and eat Dole Whip in Epcot, I suppose. That’s the moral of this vacation.

Greece– Spanakopita

I’m just going to keep saying that in an exaggerated Italian accent because I am Michael Scott. I wonder if John Stamos hangs around this booth. I’d like to spana his kopita! I don’t know. Leave me alone. It’s a spinach pie thing and I am going to slide it down my gullet. The alcohol at this booth does nothing for me.

New Zealand– Some wine, I guess

Kiwi a-go-go! There better be an attractive cast member at this booth for me to swoon over. Do they have a song in New Zealand called “Why Don’t We Get Munted and Root?” I’ll have to ask the cast member. The food here doesn’t do much for me. Although, “How are your lip mussels? Can I try them out?” would be a really choice pick-up line and I really, really hope I don’t remember that when I’m tipsy. Ok, before I make some more lech-y creep-o comments–the only alcohol here is wine so I guess wine it is!

Africa– Beef tips

So what’s the deal with this booth? The booth itself says South Africa. The menu and web sites say Africa. They’re not interchangeable, Disney. Quit pulling this shit. Africa is a, say it with me now, CONTINENT. Obviously Disney plays fast and loose with the Food and Wine kiosks but this just irks me. The only thing here that sounds remotely appetizing to me are the beef tenderloin tips berbere style with okra, jalapeños, tomato and pap, but I don’t feel super enthusiastic about it. I am going to be so sick of beef on this trip. I may have switch Twitter handles with Dan.

Brazil– Frozen Caipirinha

While I’m pretty intrigued by the pork belly, it has that pesky, nasty cilantro. I may just give it a try anyway–like I said before, I can deal with cilantro in some dishes and this one may be worth the risk. It is served on black beans with tomato. Last year it included avocado, but that’s not listed on the menu this year. I’m not sure if it’s an oversight or if they’ve gotten rid of it. SUSPENSE! You’ll just have to wait for the exciting conclusion! The pao de queijo, a cheese bread, sounds good. However, I’m really not sure I’m going to be really wanting a piece of bread in the hot, Florida sun. I will most definitely be getting a frozen Caipirinha, which the internet claims is Brazil’s national cocktail. A quick Google of “Brazilian men” also tells me that they are all very hot and usually in some state of undress, so I look forward to that as well.

A typical Brazilian man, according to Google.

A typical Brazilian man, according to Google.

Scotland– Vegetarian Haggis

OCH! The land of tartan and ginger. I’ve gotta say, googling “Scottish men” is not nearly as fun as “Brazilian men”. It’s not the kilts. It’s the white kneesocks. So, I’m totally going to go for the vegetarian haggis here. It’s such a cop-out. They really ought to have the real deal. I’m not saying I would eat it, but come on. In any case, I’ve never had rutabaga so that’ll be just crazy fun. No booze for Ole Clarfy at this booth. Sorry scotch lovers, I am not among you. I really wanted to work “cold-hearted harbinger of haggis” into this entry, but it wasn’t meant to be. Well, except right there. But that doesn’t really count.

Australia– Pavlova

I’ve heard a lot of great things about the lamb chop here, but I won’t be having it. It’s covered in a mint pesto and the only time I like mint is if it’s in some kind of sweet. The other option is shrimp, which I do not want. Luckily, the dessert here sounds so good that the name alone had me drooling. It’s described as a “crispy meringue shell with fresh berries and vanilla custard”, which sounds absolutely perfect on a hot summer day. I’m very much looking forward to this one.

Brewer’s Collection– Not Sure

Not Sure? What an odd name for a beer! Wokka wokka! Anyway, I’d really like to do a beer flight here but each one has at least one beer I’m not interested in trying. Ah, the trials of a solo trip. I’ll probably still opt to get Beer Flight #1, which has Radeberger Pilsner, BraufactuM Colonia, BraufactuM Palor and Schöfferhofer Grapefruit. I’m not huge on Grapefruit but I may suck it up. Literally? Sure. If I could just switch it with the Altenmünster Oktoberfest from the second flight, I’d be happy. The second flight has too much dark for my liking. We’ll see. I may opt to just sample one or two that I’m interested in. Pilsner in a glass, or the first flight, I can pop bottles all night ’cause baby I can do whatever I liiiiike… Yeah, I can do whatever I liiiiike…

China– Potstickers and Kung Fu Punch

Potstickers sound really good to me right now and so it’s clouding my judgement. Mongolian beef in a bun with chili mayo sounds tasty but again I find myself guessing I’m not going to want it when I’m drenched in sweat and hotter than whatever pepper currently grows in Living with the Land. I think I’ll take a break from beer here and opt to get a vodka drink. (I’ll be one whiskey drink away from hitting the ole Chumbawumba superfecta.) I’m not sure what flavor Kung Fu is, but I bet it packs a real… Nope. Not gonna do it.

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Stay tuned for Part Three!

Beef & Booze: My Food & Wine Festival Menu Selections, Part One

16 Aug
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Believe it or not, I made this on Paint!

In just 37 short days, I will be arriving in Walt Disney World for my first ever visit to the Epcot Food and Wine Festival! I’m staying at an Epcot hotel, so I plan on attending each day I’m there. This trip is about slowing my commando roll and relaxing while fully taking in the Festival. It may seem a little contradictory to say that this is supposed to be a relaxing, easy trip as I map out what I plan on ordering from each booth in great detail, but I felt it was necessary. I’m not exactly a “foodie”, so it’s going to remove a lot of stress for me going in if I already know what exactly the dishes are and whether or not I want them. Plus, it’s fun!

I know it’s ambitious, but I’d really like to hit every booth. I’m not going to stress if this doesn’t happen. This trip is all about doing whatever I feel so inclined to do at the time. Maybe I’ll want to grab another pork slider from Hawaii instead of ordering something I don’t particularly want from Terra. Maybe I’ll just want to sit on the Boardwalk and eat a slice of pizza. Maybe I’ll want to spend a whole day in the Magic Kingdom and skip the Festival. Who knows! But I’d rather go in with a good knowledge of the menus because it’s going to make the experience better for me.

I decided since I had been meaning to write some trip planning posts (or just some posts in general… oops…) that this was the perfect topic. I’ve gone through, booth by booth, kiosk by kiosk, and listed what I plan on ordering from each and why. I’m going to split this up into a few posts because DAMN there are a lot of booths. After I get back, I’ll let you know what I got and what I thought! Also, a note before I start–I had it in my head that the CMs in each booth would be from that country since that’s how it works in the rest of World Showcase. Somewhere around Scotland, the logical part of my brain was like, “You know they’re just going to be regular food service CMs, right?” So it ruined a lot of jokes and several intricate fantasies but just go with it.

And now, without further rambling ado, in a pretty random and weird order, my Epcot Food and Wine Festival 2014 menu picks!

Morocco– Kefta Pocket and a Casa Beer

I’m not a big baklava fan, and the other option is a spicy shrimp roll with cilantro and mint sauce. I cannot think of anything I would rather eat less than a spicy shrimp roll with cilantro and mint sauce. It’s almost as though the dish was specifically tailored to contain things I don’t like. So, Kefta Pocket is it! It’s pretty simple–seasoned ground beef in a pita pocket. Wham, bam, give me my damn Casa Beer already. Please. Ma’am. Thank you.

Desserts and Champagne– Trio and Rosé

The dessert trio this year sounds friggin’ amazing. Passion fruit coconut creamsicle, blueberry lime cheesecake roll and chocolate espresso opera cake. Enough said. Weak item going in looks like the opera cake, but there’s only one way to find out! And Imma be like, “Yo Trey? Do you think you can buy me a tiny cup of Rosé for $15?”

lol no. no I will not.

lol no. no I cannot.

Singapore– Tiger Beer

I don’t eat fish, so the seared mahi mahi is out. I’m slightly bummed about this because I would like to try the Singa sauce, but alas. The other option is lemongrass chicken curry with coconut and jasmine rice. That… does not sound appetizing to me. So Tiger Beer it is!

France– Escargot (??) and Sparkling Pomegranate Kir

I’m so France-ay… Gonna eat some snaaails! I’m not sure if it’ll last, but I feel really compelled to try the escargot. I wanted to try some new things at the festival, and escargot fits the bill. The little bread bowls they were in last year looked so good, but this year they are on a tart. I’m just going to play this one by ear and see how I feel once I’m actually standing there. I can always go with good old crème brûlée. And Sparkling Wine and Pomegranate Liqueur on a hot day? Yes please! At some point I will probably also have the La Passion Martini Slush (vodka, Grey Goose Le Citron, cranberry and passion fruit juice), another refreshing-sounding option!

Canada– Moosehead

Ah, exotic Canda. As far as my experience is concerned, Canada is a place where you either go look at water or you wear a Sou’wester hat whilst following a man playing a bagpipe from pub to pub drinking Moosehead. Moosehead is all I’m really interested in at this booth. I don’t understand cheese soup. Is it not just eating queso with a spoon? Stick it in a bread bowl and maybe we can talk. Fish? BZZZT. Steak? YES! With mushrooms? BZZT. So just beer me a Moosehead, eh?

South Korea– Kimchi dog OR lettuce wrap and Soju fruit slushy

I really can’t decide if I want the kimchi dog with spicy mustard sauce or the roasted pork lettuce wrap with kimchi slaw. I’ll just have to see what sounds good that day. And a tiny, overpriced slushy! Hooray!

Belgium– EVERYTHING

Belgium, you delicious son of a bitch! Here you can get a potato and leek waffle with beer-braised beef or a Belgian waffle topped with either berry compote or chocolate ganache. And every damn one looks fine as hell. I am really looking forward to this booth. I may opt to try the beer flight here, as they replaced last year’s Leffe Brune with Stella Artois Cidre and the Brune was really the only one I wasn’t interested in. The other three included in the flight are Hoegaarden, Stella Artois, Leffe Blonde. After a few drinks, I’ll probably be tweeting a really hilarious Hoegaarden joke once I make it to Belgium. Just you wait. And riddle me this… On the menu board–and I checked!–it definitely says “BelgiAN waffle” and yet on the official Disney site (and thusly many blogs) it says “BelgiUM waffle”. It is bringing me great distress and I cannot go on this way. Something must be done.

Look what I grew for your in my ho garden!

Look what I grew for your in my ho garden!

Japan– No freaking clue.

I really want to get my whole passport thingy stamped, so I don’t want to miss any booths but this booth does absolutely nothing for me. I’m not into the seafood, I don’t eat hands either, and sake tastes like somebody put vodka in the microwave. I would’ve liked last years Sapporo Draft, but it’s been unfortunately replaced this year by Kirin beer, which is absolutely foul. The only thing left is the teriyaki gyoza bun, which sounds like a total yawn. I suppose if I want my stamp, that’s what I’ll have to get. Life really sucks sometimes, ya know?

Farm Fresh– Burr

Farm Fresh replaces the Florida Local booth from last year, which I think is a really dumb name change, myself. But I digress. There’s a bacon and egg whatever dish with corn and I am just not feeling it. The other option is griddled “yard bird”. The hell is a yard bird? Like a starling? Are they serving griddled crow? I don’t know enough about bird law to comment on the legalities of this, but it’s moot anyway because I did a Google and apparently yard bird is “a military recruit who is assigned menial tasks”. I wonder what cut they use? I hope they use his or her hands for the hand rolls. It would be such a waste to just throw them away. BUT I DIGRESS. This booph has a bunch of beers, one of which is described by one reviewer as being “hazy brown in color with generous foamy beige head”, which may make you chuckle if you are also a thirteen year old boy but I digress but also there is a key lime wine which sounds good, too. Okay? Okay.

I’m going to stop there for today! Stay tuned for Part Two!