The 2018 “Food” & Garden Festival Has Arrived! Get YOUR Menus Here!

Good Wednesday, my friends!  World Showcase’s spring-time menus have been revealed!  That’s right!  It’s time to devour the 2018 Epcot International “Food” & Garden Festival!  

With an earlier-than-ever opening date of February 28th, Epcot’s annual flower-filled event will run all of the until May 28th!  Plenty of time to eat!  And, what’s being served?  Take a look!

Please note: the following menu items marked with (GF) are gluten/wheat-friendly and those with (V) are vegetarian.

Bauernmarkt: Farmer’s Market (Germany)

  • Potato Pancakes with House-made Apple Sauce (V)
  • Potato Pancake with Caramelized Ham, Onions and Herb Sour Cream
  • Toasted Pretzel Bread topped with Black Forest Ham and Melted Gruyère Cheese
  • Warm Cheese Strudel with Mixed Berries

Cider House (United Kingdom)

  • Pear Cider-brined Shredded Corned Beef with Braised Cabbage and Branston Dressing with Pears
  • House-made Potato and Cheddar Cheese Biscuit with Smoked Salmon Tartare
  • Freshly Baked Lemon Scone with Crème Fraîche and Mixed Berries (V) (GF)

Fleur de Lys (France)

  • Tarte à la Tomate Provençale: Provencal Tomato Tart with Sautéed Onions, Fresh Thyme and Rosemary on a Flaky Pastry Crust (V)
  • Canard Confit Aux Gnocchi à la Parisienne: Braised Duck Confit with Parisian Gnocchi
  • Macaron au Chocolat en Sucette: Large Chocolate Macaron Lollipop (GF)

Florida Fresh (between France and Morocco)

  • Carne Guisada with Black Bean Cake and Cilantro Lime Sour Cream
  • Spicy Blackened Shrimp and Stone-ground Cheddar Cheese Grits with Brown Gravy and Local Sweet Corn Relish
  • Key Lime Tart with Toasted Meringue

Hanami (Japan)

  • Frushi: Fresh Pineapple, Strawberry and Melon rolled with Coconut Rice, sprinkled with Toasted Coconut and Whipped Cream with Raspberry Sauce on the side (V)
  • Ginger Beef Yaki Udon: Thin-sliced Beef, Onions and Noodles tossed on the grill with Soy and Ginger
  • Teriyaki Salmon with Furikake Seasoned Brown Rice (GF)

2015’s Frushi

THE SMOKEHOUSE: Barbecue and Brews (American Adventure)

  • Pulled Pig Slider with Coleslaw
  • Beef Brisket Burnt Ends and Smoked Pork Belly Slider with Garlic Sausage, Chorizo, Cheddar Fondue and House-made Pickle
  • Beef Brisket Burnt Ends Hash with White Cheddar Fondue and Pickled Jalapeños
  • Warm Chocolate Cake with Bourbon-Salted Caramel Sauce and Spiced Pecans (V)

2016’s Pig Slider

Jardin de Fiestas (Mexico)

  • Pork Taco: Slow-braised Pork Taco served with Apple Relish, Goat Cheese and Chile de Árbol Sauce
  • Chilaquiles: Chilaquiles served with Chorizo, Mexican Cream and Cotija Cheese
  • Capirotada: Bread Pudding served with Rompope

La Isla Fresca

  • Jamaican-braised Beef with Pigeon Pea Rice and Micro Cilantro
  • Sugar Cane Shrimp Skewer with Steamed Rice and Coconut Lime Sauce
  • Caribbean Conch Salad with Mango, Papaya and Pickled Red Onions
  • Tropical Mousse Cake: Layers of Passion Fruit Cake, Coconut Mousse and a Tropical Fruit Glaze with Fresh Pineapple

2017’s Shrimp Skewer

Lotus House (China)

  • Spicy Meatballs with Crispy Tofu
  • Fried Chicken Dumplings with Peanut Sauce
  • Vegetable Spring Rolls (V)

Northern Bloom (Canada)

  • Seared Scallops with French Green Beans, Butter Potatoes, Brown Butter Vinaigrette and Apple-wood Smoked Bacon (GF)
  • Beef Tenderloin Tips, Mushroom Bordelaise Sauce, Whipped Potatoes with Garden Vegetables
  • Griddled Maple Pound Cake with Warm Peach Compote and Sweet Corn Gelato

2017’s Scallops

Pineapple Promenade

  • Spicy Hot Dog with Pineapple Chutney and Plantain Chips
  • Pineapple Soft-Serve (V)

Primavera Kitchen (Italy)

  • Frittata di Asparagi: Asparagus Frittata, Mixed Greens and Citrus Dressing (GF) (V)
  • Firtto Misto: Crispy Shrimps, Zucchini and Spicy Sauces
  • Ravioli: Maine Lobster Ravioli with Vodka Sauce
  • Panna Cotta al Melone: Cantaloupe Panna Cotta (GF) (V)

Taste of Marrakesh (Morocco)

  • Harissa Chicken Kebab with Dried Fruit Couscous Salad
  • Fried Cauliflower with Capers, Garlic Parsley and Chili Ranch Sauce
  • Walnut Honey Baklava

The Berry Basket

  • Lamb chop with Quinoa Salad and Blackberry Gastrique
  • Field Greens with fresh Strawberries, Crisp Quinoa, Strawberry Vinaigrette and Spiced Pecans (V)
  • Warm Wild Berry Buckle with Pepper Berry Gelato (V)

2017’s Lamb Chop

The Honey Bee-stro Hosted by National Honey Board™– NEW!

  • Roasted Cauliflower with Buckwheat Honey Carrot Puree, Wild Rice Pilaf, Asparagus, Honey Blistered Grapes and Sunflower Brittle (GF) (V)
  • Honey Tandoori Chicken Flatbread with White Cheddar Cheese, charred vegetables, Clover Honey Sour Cream and Micro Watercress
  • Local Wildflower Honey-Mascarpone Cheesecake with Orange Blossom Honey Ice Cream garnished with Fennel Pollen Meringue Kisses

The Garden? It’s Gonna Rock!

Morning, folks.  Did you catch the news?  The Garden?  It’s gonna be rockin’!  The 2018 Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival – otherwise known around these parts as the “Food” & Garden Festival – has announced its Garden Rocks Concert Series!

Scheduled to run from February 28th to May 28th, what acts are on tap for 2018?  Check it out!

  • Night Ranger – March 2 to 5
  • STARSHIP starring Mickey Thomas – March 9 to 12
  • Simple Plan – March 16 to 19
  • Little River Band – March 23 to 26
  • The Orchestra starring former members of ELO – March 30 to April 2
  • New! Foghat – April 6 & 7
  • New! Survivor – April 8 & 9
  • New! Smash Mouth – April 13 & 14
  • New! Rick Springfield – April 15 & 16
  • New! Jo Dee Messina – April 20 & 21
  • New! Lonestar – April 22 & 23
  • Blood, Sweat and Tears featuring Bo Bice – April 27 to 30
  • Herman’s Hermits starring Peter Noone – May 4 to 7
  • Village People – May 11 & 12
  • New! Don Felder, formerly of The Eagles – May 13 & 14
  • The Guess Who – May 18 to 21
  • The Spinners – May 25 to 28

Are you going to get a chance to join in on the fun this Spring?  If so, who will you be able to see?  Regardless, however, who would you want to see?  Choose three artists in the poll below!

Welcome to the “Official” All in WDW 2017 “Food” & Garden Top 10!

Without delay, my friends, here is my final verdict.  I’ve attended Flower & Garden’s first two opening days.  What did I like?  Here’s the scoop!

10 – Crabless Cake – Urban Farm Eats

The odd taste of this “cake” saved the American Adventure’s smokehouse from itself.

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The so-called Crispy Vegetable Slaw was not crispy but was uninspiring.  The remoulade was bland.

9 – Pulled Pig Slider – THE SMOKEHOUSE: Barbecue and Brews

What an incredible disappointment.  Seriously, folks.  This might be the poorest presentation of a returning dish I’ve ever seen.

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Look, for a festival item, I don’t need the full sandwich that they’ve offered in the past.  It has always been called a slider, after all.

Having said that, the entire dish (stale bread, dry pork, tasteless slaw) was awful.

8 – Battered Poblano Pepper filled with Ground Beef – Jardin de Fiestas

“Filled” is a very generous description when it comes to this item’s beefy-stuffing.

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Then, I didn’t think about this until after I published the “Flash Report”, but this recipe was supposed to include Queso Fresco and Toasted Almonds.  Is it just me?  I don’t see either.

7 – Baked Chicken with Crawfish – Fleur de Lys

It wasn’t a bad dish, but it wasn’t great either.

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The crawfish was nice, I’ll say that much. Otherwise, it was pretty unremarkable.

6 – Sugar Cane Shrimp Skewer – La Isla Fresca

Other than the tails, we failed to mention one of the other critiques we have of this offering.

It was pretty hard getting the shrimp off of the sugar cane skewer.  So, why is that a problem?

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Well, you see that lovely-colored sauce?  I almost splattered it on Mrs. All in WDW’s white top while tugging shrimp off the “stick”.

My friends, that would have been the end of my All in WDW “career”.

5 – Lamb Chop with Quinoa Salad – The Berry Basket

I took one bite.  I thought it was OK.  Mrs. All in WDW didn’t agree.

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The lamb was chewy.  She hated the Blackberry Gastrique.  Still beat five other dishes, though!

4 – Seared Scallops – Northern Bloom

Looking past my frustration with Northern Bloom’s disorganized service, these scallops were well-prepared.

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Plus, did I mention this earlier?  There were TWO!  Much more generous than in the past, Disney!  Thanks!

3 – Shrimp and Stone-ground Grits – Florida Fresh

Still a great dish, it just fell to stouter competition.  Nothing more complicated than that.

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I watched the chef prepare this dish from flat-top to presentation.  I’ve told Mrs. All in WDW that I’m going to try to make it at home.

2 – Meatball Parmigiana – Primavera Kitchen

Chuckle, if you’d like, but there were two dishes that left me with a “I’ve got to have that again” feeling.

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Italy scored with the first of them.  I’ll say it again.  Great comeback from your years-ago ravioli “disaster”, Italy!  Utterly delicious!

Might just be me, but I loved, loved, loved it!

1 – Smoked Pork Ribs – THE SMOKEHOUSE: Barbecue and Brews

Well, this came as a shock to me, but I can’t deny the fact that both Mrs. All in WDW and I instantly wanted a second serving.

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It may be a, more or less, mundane item – as you can find good ribs in a lot of places – but this dish’s “fall off the bone” goodness can’t be denied.  It WINS the festival!

There, you have it, everyone.  If you’re going to get a chance to visit “Food” & Garden, then, please, enjoy!  In the meantime, here’s the entire list … in order!

  1. Smoked Pork Ribs – THE SMOKEHOUSE: Barbecue and Brews
  2. Meatball Parmigiana – Primavera Kitchen
  3. Shrimp and Stone-ground Grits – Florida Fresh
  4. Seared Scallops – Northern Bloom
  5. Lamb Chop with Quinoa Salad – The Berry Basket
  6. Sugar Cane Shrimp Skewer – La Isla Fresca
  7. Baked Chicken with Crawfish – Fleur de Lys
  8. Battered Poblano Pepper filled with Ground Beef – Jardin de Fiestas
  9. Pulled Pig Slider – THE SMOKEHOUSE: Barbecue and Brews
  10. Crabless Cake – Urban Farm Eats

 

You Can Visit the Showcase, but it’s Bambi’s World!

I’ve rarely spent a lot of time snapping pictures of Epcot’s topiaries, but I never miss Bambi.

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Why, you ask?  What’s special about Bambi?  He is my mom’s favorite Disney character!  So, Mom?  This post is for you!

Three Amigos in a Very Hot Pepper Patch!

Just some quick shots of “Food” (er, Flower) & Garden, folks!  I love these guys, don’t you?

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Hard to tell – unless you expand the picture, that is – but there they are … amidst Peach Ghost and Carolina Reaper peppers!  Hot stuff!