Florida Guide > Disney Parks
Epcot's Annual Food and Wine Festival
If you are visiting Orlando, Florida in October or early November the place to be is Walt Disney World’s Epcot. The always popular Food and Wine Festival was extended from 30 days to 45 days in 2004 and was bigger and better than ever before!
Epcot’s annual Food and Wine Festival is the largest and is currently the longest-running festival of this kind in the world. In excess of 20 international food and wine stands are set up around the lagoon in World Showcase, each representing different regions of the world, with mouth-watering cuisine and wine samples ranging from $1-$4.50.
Special events include live entertainment, guest chefs, lots of cookery demonstrations in which you are invited to taste the food afterwards, beer and wine seminars with complimentary samplings (a separate charge is made for the seminars), and plenty of children’s programmes and activities.
We tend to stroll from country to country, around World Showcase, in the early evening visiting the marketplaces where the aroma from the freshly prepared food entices you to sample the dishes native to their homelands. I think “grazing” might be the best way to describe this delicious activity. Salmon with maple syrup and walnuts from Canada, Lamb cutlets served with mango chutney from New Zealand, Alligator steaks from Florida and Chicken Satay skewers from China are amongst our favourites. Of course you must also try the wine samples – what meal would not be complete without a glass of wine!
A word of warning though – although the portions are small and the individual prices quite reasonable you do tend to get carried away with the choices and can end up spending more dollars than a night out at a restaurant!
As themed entertainment is always part of Disney’s hospitality, special guests are invited to play at the American Gardens Theatre each year in the “Eat to the Beat” concerts which are performed each evening. There are usually three shows per night. Past guests have included The Temptations, The Beach Boys and Chubby Checker to name but a few. These wonderful concerts, which are free to Epcot guests, have become very popular in recent years so I advise arriving at the theatre as early as possible for the best chance of reserving a good seat.
To participate in Walt Disney World’s Epcot annual Food and Wine Festival all you will need is your admission to the park, a few dollars in your wallet and a good appetite. Bon appetit!
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