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!

“Food” & Garden ’14 Update!

I had a great “Dining Recon” queued up for you to enjoy for lunch today, but you’re going to have to wait one more day.  You see, I was lurking around the Touring Plans Lines chat app last night and ran into and old friend – JustTimmy.

He pointed us in the direction of AllEars.net and their, recently-published, update on Epcot’s “other” food festival – “Food” & Garden ’14!

Oh, so, OK. It’s really the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival, but we know better, now, don’t we?  Bring on “Food” & Garden!

I encourage you to pop over to AllEars in order to see the full “spiel”, but, in the meantime, here are the important things you need to know.

First, the festival opens on March 5, 2014 and runs to May 18, 2014.  It’s hard to believe that it is just a mere three months away!  Mark it down, folks!  March 5th!

Second, the food is definitely back!  At this past July’s Food & Wine preview event, Chef Marianne Hunnel told us that …

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“Food” & Garden Flashback: “Killer” Potato Pancakes!

Yeah, I know.  I said that I was going to take a few days off.  Well, sometimes ideas fall right into your lap.

This one is less about Epcot’s Food & Wine festival but more of a “flashback” to last Spring’s Flower & Garden (er, “Food” & Garden) event.  Do you remember Germany’s potato pancakes?  The dish that I sampled and said, “A bit too much minced onion for my taste and a little too salty. I don’t need another helping, thanks.”

"Food" & Garden's Potato Pancake

“Food” & Garden’s Potato Pancake

How about this? Upon meeting Epcot Executive Chef Jens Dahlmann at “Food” & Garden, Mrs. All in WDW and I were asked what we liked and what we did not. Bravely, we told him that Germany’s potato pancake was just a little bit salty.  Geez!  How did we ever have the nerve?

Prior to the attending the festival, I had commented, “Potato pancakes and I have a bit of history.  My dad makes ‘killer’ potato pancakes.  Germany?  My expectations are extremely high.  You better be ready to “bring it!”  Well, as I described above, they didn’t.  And, in fact, as a result, Germany’s effort finished with a ranking of #16 in my Final “Food” & Garden Top 20 and with a description of “Just OK”.

I mentioned the other day that Mrs. All in WDW and I are spending the Labor Day weekend visiting family, with a first stop to stay with my mom and dad.  All four of our parents take great care of us.  This time, mine welcomed us with healthy doses of our favorite beer and pizza, a home-cooked breakfast of bacon and eggs, and … Dad’s “killer” potato pancakes.

I just had to share.  You know how much we like to try to recreate WDW dishes.  From shrimp tacos to shrimp and asparagus, if it’s “Disney good”, we want to try to make it at home.  Well, Dad’s got us covered on this one.  Simple in their design, these potato pancakes are all kinds of delicious.

Like I said ... a simple recipe!

Like I said … a simple recipe!

Leads to a pile of 'cakes!

Leads to a pile of ‘cakes!

Look at ‘dem ‘cakes!  And, this wasn’t even the entire batch!  Of course, we had to try to replicate Chef’s dish, so here they are with an apple sauce topping.

With an apple sauce garnish!

With an apple sauce garnish!

Try ’em out!  Or, just enjoy the pictures, if you like.  Either way, I’ll bet that you’ll come away wanting more and more!  It’s just a cold, hard fact … as an entree or as a side, these “cakes” just rock!  Way to go, Dad!  Sorry, Chef Jens.  My dad’s got you beat!

“Food” & Garden – The Smokehouse Still Rules

When it comes to the Top 20 list, I mentioned the other day that, “I have a rule … once the final list is published, it doesn’t change.” Well, it is a good thing … because The Smokehouse really struggled in our return trip to the festival.

Woody says, "Howdy! Welcome to The Smokehouse!"

Woody says, “Howdy! Welcome to The Smokehouse!”

Smoke that pig!

Smoke that pig!

What's on the menu?

What’s on the menu?

Now, to be clear, the pig slider and beef brisket were both out-of-this-world outstanding in March. I’m not shy to admit that, over the course of that long weekend, I had …

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“Food” & Garden – Where’s The Salt?!

As I think back to our first visit to Epcot’s International “Food” & Garden Festival in March, I can’t believe that Mrs. All in WDW and I had the audacity – or the courage – to tell a world-class chef that one of his dishes was way too salty!  Hah!  In fact, we told him that TWO of his plates were way too salty!  The nerve!

If you saw it, you’ll remember that, on the last day of our first trip to the festival, we were treated to a visit from Epcot Executive Chef Jens Dahlmann.  As I reported, “He asked us …

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