For a record 46 days beginning Sept. 28, Disney guests can taste their way around the world during the 17th annual Epcot International Food & Wine Festival at Walt Disney World Resort. The culinary event, just named one of the Best Food and Wine Festivals by the Travel Channel, includes daily Eat to the Beat! pop concerts and one extra day of festival fun as the foodie celebration continues through Nov. 12.
Festival chefs are firing on all burners with menus designed for every palate and a new Marketplace VIP Access Chef Tour geared toward the foodie who wants the inside culinary scoop.
New festival marketplaces debut – TERRA Marketplace will offer all vegan menu items including Trick’n Chick’n Curry with Basmati Rice and Chili Colorado with House-Made Chips and Cashew Cheese; FLORIDA Marketplace will introduce fresh twists on regional flavor samplings. More than 25 ethnic and regional marketplaces with tantalizing new aromas and flavors will tempt guests in the World Showcase.
Marketplace Chef Tours give VIP access – Each Wednesday, festival chefs will host a walking-and-tasting tour around World Showcase with stops at several international marketplaces. Guests will taste five marketplace dishes and five beverage items to include beer, wine and cocktails while learning chefs’ culinary secrets.
Newly crafted beverages are geared toward family dining – Children of all ages can try inventive new sips during the family’s marketplace dine-around. Child-friendly bites to pair will include beef empanadas and cheese fondue.
Fan favorites debut at Eat to the Beat! Concerts – Pop acts like Smash Mouth (Oct. 11-12) and Javier Colon, winner of “The Voice” (Oct. 13-14) will sizzle during their first Epcot nightly concerts included with other festival activities in admission. Eighteen Eat to the Beat! acts are slated, including other new bands Blues Traveler (Nov. 5-6) and Dennis DeYoung, original member of STYX (Nov. 7-8). Night Ranger kicks off the concert series Sept. 28-30, and other returning fan favorites include Boyz II Men, The Pointer Sisters, Sister Hazel and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy.
HGTV sets the table – Superstar HGTV designers host home entertaining seminars every Friday, Saturday and Sunday.
Celebrity chefs bring it – Renowned chefs like Robert Irvine and Rock Harper share their talents during culinary demos.
Festival Welcome Center buzzes with extras – Guests can make the most of complimentary Authentic Taste seminars. Culinary demonstrations and wine seminars feature new tastes and sips for a nominal fee.
Reserved culinary events kick tastings up a notch — Special culinary programs showcase a lineup of renowned winemakers, guest chefs and speakers participating in elegant dinners, luncheons, seminars and wine schools.
Other festival highlights include:
- More than 270 chefs including Disney chefs and culinary stars from across the country conducting culinary demonstrations and hosting dinners and tasting events.
- A complimentary Marketplace Discovery Passport to be stamped at each international marketplace visited for the perfect scrapbook souvenir.
- Party for the Senses grand tasting events Oct. 6, 13, 20, 27 and Nov. 3 featuring tempting bites from eminent chefs, more than 50 wines and beers and live entertainment.
- “3D” Disney’s Dessert Discovery on select Fridays.
Authentic Taste seminars, HGTV seminars, special book signings, Eat to the Beat! concerts, cultural adventures, Marketplace Discovery Passport and all attractions and park entertainment are included with regular Epcot admission.
The Party for the Senses grand tasting events and other special wine and culinary programs require reservations and separate event admission. Guests can call 407/WDW-FEST (939-3378) to make reservations. Information and reservations for select events and programs will be updated periodically this summer at www.disneyworld.com/foodandwine.
- What’s New for the 17th Annual Epcot International Food and Wine Festival (chipandco.com)
- Dates Announced for the 2012 Epcot International Food & Wine Festival (chipandco.com)
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