We finally come to one of my favorite days of the year. You helped me publish your pre-festival Top 25. I published my pre-festival menu. Mrs. All in WDW and I journeyed to Orlando to taste the dishes. Now, I get to reveal the “official” All in WDW 2013 Epcot International Food & Wine Festival Final Top 25!
I can’t wait a minute longer, so here goes!
25. Griddled Lobster Tail – Hops & Barley
Before you react with shock and horror, hear me out. I do like lobster. I really do. I’m not a fan of cold lobster, but I do like lobster. Having said that, this was, actually, the 2013 ‘Top 25′ dish that I enjoyed the least.
The tails were tasty, I’ll admit, but, having been brushed with melted butter, they were just plain messy. I know. Pulling lobster meat out of the shell isn’t necessarily supposed to be tidy. However, it’s sloppy enough without being greased up with butter first.
I guess when I saw the stains on my clothing I realized that this plate was “not my thing”. Besides, at $7.50, it is one of the most expensive items at the “show”. Not worth it, in my mind. Not when there is a $7.00 filet mignon on the other side of the lagoon.
24. Grass-Fed Beef Sliders – Florida
If you watched the Travel with Rick videos, you heard me say that on any given day, a chef and his or her dish can have a bad day. Well, when it comes to Food & Wine, fool me once, and I’ll give you another chance. Fool me twice, and you’re ‘done’.
I was fortunate enough to try this slider at the Tables in Wonderland Food & Wine preview event in late July. I found it to be pretty dry and very ordinary. Believe it or not, at the actual festival, it was even drier! I thought about giving it a third chance, but, in the end, I felt my money was better spent elsewhere.
23. Griddled Greek Cheese – Greece
While I was at the festival, I said that this one ALWAYS sneaks up on me and says, “Hey! I’m pretty darn good, remember?” There’s no question. And, even though it was a bit hard to cut this year, Greece’s yummy cheese is a perfect blend of savory with honey sweetness. It’s just difficult to see how I can rank it ahead of other more entree-like items, however. Of course, that doesn’t say much about the slider and the lobster tail, now does it?
22. Seared Trout – Canada
The fish was well-prepared, but it wasn’t anywhere near good enough to make me forget Canada’s, now “retired”, Chicken Chipotle Sausage with Sweet Corn Polenta from years past. The bacon was a nice touch, but it was a bit on the “rubbery” side.
21. Fisherman’s Pie – Ireland
OK, I’ll admit it. It was much better than the portion I had in 2011. For my taste, though, it needs a lot more seasoning. To be honest, the seafood was very good. In total, though, the dish just didn’t have much taste.
So, that’s where it begins, my friends. Tomorrow, we’ll forge deeper into the list. But, in the meantime, what do you think? Have you sampled any of these items? Am I “way out in the weeds”? Or, am I close to the target? Please leave a comment and let us know!