Food & Wine Festival 2021 Breakdown
By now, you’ve probably read about each day of our 4-day trip to Disney World at the end of August. You may have wondered why I didn’t spend much time talking about the food or go into that much detail. I decided to dedicate an entire post to just the Food & Wine Festival food and drinks, our general thoughts, the price, and if we’d get it again. So, without further adieu, here we go!
We made a list of foods we wanted to try before our trip and I started highlighting them as we tried them so we could keep track of our thoughts.
- Green is super good, would get a again
- Yellow was decent
- Orange was not good
- Then we added in blue for top favorites
“Le Cellier” Wild Mushroom Beef Filet Mignon with Truffle-Butter Sauce
This was SO good. I’m not a mushroom person so I ate around those, but my husband loved every bit of it. The steak was cooked perfectly, it was nice and tender, and the truffle-butter sauce was delicious! My first instinct is to say it’s a bit pricey because it’s not a massive portion, but it really is a good size and it is a great cut of steak, so I definitely think it’s worth it.
Canadian Cheddar and Bacon Soup served with a Pretzel Roll
So good and a really great value! It was SO hot in August and we skipped all the brothy foods, but this broke the rule and it was thick and hearty (exactly how I like my soups) and so so tasty! You get a really good sized pretzel roll, too (we forgot to take pictures before we started eating so that’s only half the roll and it’s mostly hidden behind the soup).
Drink: La Passion Martini Slushy – Vodka, Grey Goose Le Citron Vodka, Cranberry, and Passion Fruit Juice
I am not usually a vodka drinker but I tried this on my last visit to Food & Wine in 2019 and loved it so I had to get it again. So bright and fruity and refreshing, it’s perfect for a sweltering hot day in August. Do I think it’s worth the price? Probably not. Will I get it again? Absolutely.
Top left: Croissant aux Escargots – Escargot Croissant with Garlic and Parsley
I have never had escargots and am weird about food texture so I was apprehensive about this but it was super good. Really, really garlicky (which we love), so skip it if it’s not your thing. The escargots was not rubbery, like I was expecting. This was delicious. Maybe a little small for the price but definitely worth a try.
Bottom: Beignet aux Trois Fromages – Warm Beignet filled with Three Cheeses
For some reason, I didn’t register that it would be sweet because it was a beignet. I knew it was a beignet, but I guess I was expecting a savory version of beignet dough. The cheese in the middle was delightfully gooey but the sweet beignet didn’t work well for me with the cheese. My husband loved this but it was a letdown for me. A really good size serving for the price, tho!
Green from hubby, Yellow from me
Right: Coq au Vin, Pommes Dauphine – Chicken braised in Burgundy Wine with Bacon and Puffed Potatoes
I wasn’t excited about this going in, but the chicken was so juicy and tender and the flavor was so good! The puffed potatoes were good. I don’t recall picking up any bacon flavor. Definitely worth the money, in our opinion.
La Passion Martini Slushy
Inside of the Beignet aux Trois Fromages
Hops & Barley
Bold Rock Roast Coffee Hard Cider
Mills River, NC
$5.00 (6 oz.)
This somehow tasted like cider and like coffee, but not together. I don’t know how to explain it but it was not good. I didn’t rate anything red, but this would have been it if I did.
Funnel Cake Stand
Mini Candied Bacon S’mores Funnel Cake with Vanilla Ice Cream
I was so excited to try this, and even more excited there were tables and chairs in air conditioning to go eat. There was visibly plenty of bacon but I didn’t get much bacon flavor. The ratio of ice cream and whipped cream to funnel cake was perfect and it was a great dessert. It was a really good size for 2 people and I do think it was worth the cost. I don’t think I’d get it again, but that’s mostly because we didn’t try nearly as many desserts and I thought we would and I’d want something different.
Wild Mushroom and Truffle Tart with Gruyère and Crème Fraîche
I could have sworn I took a photo of this and now I can’t find it. My husband is a mushroom lover (as you may remember from the Canadian Filet) and he absolutely loved this. This was a favorite for him and he would definitely get it again. It was small but definitely worth the price.
Italian Margarita with Tequila and Limoncello
This was my absolute favorite drink in 2019 and it kept that title in 2021. I love that it comes frozen and I love the brightness and tartness the limoncello adds. Feels like a decent size for the price, compared to some other frozen drinks. The only item of the festival I got more than once this trip. My husband is not a tequila fan and not nearly as into citrus as I am and he loved this and had some both times I got it.
Italian Red Sangria with Cabernet Sauvignon
I’m not a cabernet fan but it’s my husband’s wine of choice. He wanted something cold and refreshing so hadn’t contemplated wine on this trip since reds aren’t usually consumed cold and he certainly doesn’t like them cold. I suggested this sangria and he was very happy with it. It was the only wine or sangria we got, so not sure how it compares on price, but it was a decent size for the cost.
Mezzelune Croccanti – Crispy Half-moon Breaded Mozzarella-filled Ravioli with Pomodoro Sauce
The mezzelune was nice and crispy, even though it was sitting in a sauce. The flavors were good and the sauce was tasty. Nothing to write home about and we wouldn’t repeat it, but we really enjoyed it. I marked it as a green in our sheet but I’m changing it to yellow as I write this. We were underwhelmed with the food in Italy. Definitely a good portion size (5 mezzelune) but not worth the price.
Ravioli – Grilled Chicken Ravioli with Alfredo Sauce, Romano Cheese, and Prezzemolo
This was a letdown. The sauce was separated and oily. It wasn’t very hot and there really wasn’t much flavor to it. I marked it as a yellow in our sheet but I’m changing it to orange as I write this. Good portion size (5 ravioli) but not worth the price.
Griddled Cheese with Pistachios and Honey
I knew I wanted to try this because one of my favorite Instagrammers / Disney locals (@thepixietraveler / Lex from @thelostbros) raved about it, but I don’t like pistachios or honey, so I really didn’t expect to like it. We knew my husband would, so the plan was for me to just try a bite, but I LOVED this so much, we ended up sharing the whole thing. One of our top items from the whole festival, would definitely get it again, and a very good value for the money.
Spanish-style Paella with Rice, Chorizo, and Shrimp
This was good, had a good amount of shrimp (3) and chorizo and good flavors. It was a good portion size and we definitely felt it was worth the money, but we both were just sort-of eh about it. It was good, but it wasn’t amazing.
Warm Raclette Swiss Cheese with Baby Potatoes, Cornichons, and Baguette
Honestly, this was a letdown. The cheese was good and the potatoes were fine but the bread was probably the driest thing I’ve ever eaten and the cheese didn’t redeem it at all. Glad it wasn’t expensive but definitely would not get it again.
This was fine. Pretty small for $9 and wasn’t anything out of this world. If you like rose, you’ll probably like it. It was a little sweet for my liking but not undrinkable.
Beer Flight (Gaffel Kölsch, Weihenstephaner Lager, Schöfferhofer Wild Cherry Hefeweizen)
$5.00 (6 oz.)
I will preface this by saying we are IPA people and are from New England and very much like New England-style IPAs, but we do also like German and Belgian style beers and are not just focused on IPAs only. We didn’t enjoy any of these beers at all. It takes a lot for either of us not to finish a beer, but I only had a sip of each. I do believe my husband finished them, but he didn’t enjoy them.
Apple Strudel with Vanilla Sauce
I didn’t try any of this but my husband saw someone get it while in line for the beer flight and decided to go back and get it and he really enjoyed it. Nothing unique or special about it, but a really tasty apple strudel. Definitely a good size for the price.
Guinness Baileys Shake
This is probably the tiniest drink I’ve ever seen. It was so delicious and refreshing and I loved it, definitely had the flavor of Guinness without tasting like beer, somehow. The chocolate bits weren’t super easy to get while sipping and I ended up using my husband’s straw from another drink to get them out of the bottom once it was empty. I would love to get this again but I don’t know I can justify the price for how small it was.
Flavors From Fire
Drink: Swine Brine featuring Jim Beam Bourbon
I don’t even fully know what’s in this except I think that’s a ham hock or something similar sitting in there. It really just tasted like apple cider to me but my husband loved it and would definitely get it again. I thought it was a little small, but at least it had real liquor in it.
Left: The Chimichurri-up Offense – Charred Chimichurri Steak on a Smoked Corn Cake with Pickled Vegetable Slaw and Cilantro Aïoli (we asked for it without the pickled vegetable slaw)
The steak and the corn cake were both tasty but I wasn’t crazy about the aioli and there was no avoiding it, so I only had 1 bite. My husband loved it and it’s definitely a good amount of food for the price.
Right: The Corned Beef Corner Route – Smoked Corned Beef with Crispy Potatoes, Cheese Curds, Pickled Onions, and Beer-Cheese Fondue (we asked for it without the pickled onions)
This was my favorite food item in 2019 and it was again in 2021. The salty corned beef is so good, the homemade chips are delicious, and the beer-cheese fondue and cheese curbs are just amazing. There’s literally nothing not to like about this. Really good amount of food and I feel like they could get away with charging more for this. I’d get this over and over again if I had the stomach space.
Drink: Steenberg Sparkling Sauvignon Blanc, South Africa
I am a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc fan and am working on getting a taste for California Sauvignon Blanc. I’ve had some others from other parts of the world and liked them, but never from South Africa, so I had to give this a try. I totally missed the part about it being sparkling when I asked my husband to get it, so I was confused when I saw him come back with this glass, but it was really good. Not too sweet and not too dry (tho I don’t mind dry) and very tasty. I also think the price was right and I’d definitely drink it again.
Top: Baked Lobster Dip with Old Bay Chips
I’m not a lobster lover, so I didn’t eat anything from this booth except the chips from this dish, which were tasty. Hubby thought this was fine, not bad and not a bad value and size for the money, but nothing to write home about.
Middle: New England Lobster Tail with Lobster Bisque Sauce
This was my husband’s favorite item from this booth and, while we know lobster is expensive, definitely didn’t feel like the cost was worth the amount of food compared to other items from other booths. Not sure he’d get it again because of the price, but he really enjoyed it and it was the only item from the booth he ate all of.
Bottom: Lobster Chowder with Bacon, Corn, Potatoes, and Oyster Crackers
This one needed salt and was all-around mediocre, which I was sad to hear because my hubby loves lobster bisques and corn chowders a lot, so it seemed like a marriage made in food heaven. Not a bad portion size for the price, but definitely one to skip in favor of some other favorites.
Mac + Eats
81Bay Brewing Co. Lemon Hazy IPA
$5.00 (6 oz.)
We were super disappointed in this. We love IPAs, I especially love a good hazy IPA, and I super love citrus. This was just bitter and otherwise lacked flavor, and I am a bitter-loving person (black coffee, dark chocolate, hoppy IPAs, etc.). We only took a couple sips each, hoping it would redeem itself, but we ended up tossing it mostly full. Definitely pass on this one.
Truffle Macaroni and Cheese with Herbed Panko
I had high hopes for this one but it was just ok. The cheese was decently gooey, which is a must for me in a mac ‘n cheese, but the flavors just weren’t there. My husband liked it better than I did, but still not a win for him, either. It was a lot of food for the price, tho, so I’d definitely suggest trying one of the options from this booth if you’re interested. I hear the Cowboy Macaroni and Cheese (with smoked pork belly, brisket burnt ends, pickled peppers, and onion straws) is really good and wish we tried that one, instead.
81Bay Brewing Co. Lemon Hazy IPA
Chef’s Donut of the Day, which was an apple pie or apple crumble something (I don’t know why I didn’t make a note or take a pic of the sign)
This was delicious! Cinnamony and sweet without being too sweet and the donut itself was really good.
Candy Jar Donut made with M&M’S, SNICKERS, and TWIX
I was apprehensive about this being too sweet from all the candy, but I was watching as many vlogs as I could before the trip and The Tim Tracker said it was the candy that made it sweet, and most of it is stuck in the middle, so I decided to try it. The plain donut all by itself, if you could manage a bite of just that, was indeed not sweet on its own. But there was no avoiding the Mini M&Ms studded in the frosting and the frosting was sweet and the M&Ms are obviously sweet and it was just too much. Didn’t finish it. But, if you’re feeling brave and have a kid who loves candy and doesn’t care about too sweet, it’s a lot of food for the money and could be worth a try.
Top: Kālua Pork Slider with Sweet-and-Sour DOLE Pineapple Chutney and Spicy Mayonnaise
I was really interested to try because I see and hear so many people loving it, but this wasn’t a home run for me. My husband absolutely loved it so we went with his rating because I’m not a pineapple or mayo person so I just picked out some pork that was mostly naked to try. So, if the entire description on this sounds good to you, don’t listen to me and listen to my husband and give it a try. It’s a good amount of food for the price, too!
Bottom: yPassion Fruit Cheesecake with Toasted Macadamia Nuts
I’m not normally a cheesecake person at all and I really loved this! My husband thought it was just ok. It didn’t taste too much like cream cheese to me, more like mascarpone, so maybe that’s why. Hubby isn’t a mascarpone fan but I am. Worth a try if it’s really calling to you, but it’s pretty small and, overall, nothing exceptional.
Swanky Saucy Swine
Top: Roasted Porchetta with Pork-fat Roasted Rosemary Potatoes and Lemon-Parsley Salsa Verde
I saw 2 reviews on this, one rave and one that said the pork was dry. Every single thing about this sounds absolutely delicious to both of us so we tried it and are so glad we did! The pork was tender and juicy and the salsa verde was super flavorful. The only note here is I didn’t really pick up rosemary on the potatoes and roasting them in pork fat really didn’t seem to do anything to them. I love potatoes, but they were just potatoes. I forked them with some of the salsa verde, tho, and that was a great combo. Really good amount of food for the price.
Bottom: Soy-glazed Sticky Ribs with Green Onions and Peanuts
This one was a surprise to me. The whole description sounded great but I’m not a ribs person (or wings – I just don’t like to get dirty while I’m eating or work that hard for my food). They were super tender so I was very easily able to cut pieces off the bone and eat with my fork and it was SO good! The peanuts added a really nice crunch (I’m all about the texture) and the flavors worked so well together. Only complaint is I think it was a little pricey for the amount of food you get.
Left: ZiRan Beef Bao Bun: Grilled Beef with Cumin
Another surprise for me. I’m not always a big Asian-food lover and I usually have to be in the mood for it but I absolutely loved this! I’m not usually a fan of cumin on things but it worked perfectly with the beef and cilantro. It was my first bao bun and oh the bar has been set high. An immediate festival favorite. Maybe a little pricey for the portion size but I would still get this over and over.
Center: Pan-fried Chicken Dumplings with House-made Sweet and Spicy Sauce
I tend to be hit and miss on sweet and spicy sauces but this one was pretty good. I liked the bao bun better and my husband liked these better, so I didn’t eat as much of this but it was super tasty. Hubby gave it a very enthusiastic green. It only came with 2 dumplings, so while it’s on the lower end as far as festival food has been priced, I still feel like a 3rd dumpling would have made this a better value. If you’re flying solo, this will not even come close to making a meal for you.
Right: Jasmine Draft Beer
$5.00 (6 oz.)
I’m not a lover of floral flavors but this was subtle enough that I didn’t mind. There was nothing really special about the beer, and even tho jasmine is one of my husband’s favorite flavors, it was just mediocre for him, too.
Kenyan Coffee Barbecue Beef Tenderloin with Sweet Potato & Corn Mealie Pap and Kachumbari Slaw
This was another split decision for us. I LOVE coffee and we both always love coffee-rubbed meats. Every bit of this dish sounded super delicious, but there was something in the sauce that just wasn’t winning me over. My husband absolutely loved this and would have marked it as a blue if I’d loved it, too. Really good portion size for the price, too.
Green for hubby, Yellow for me
Teriyaki Chicken Bun – Steamed Bun filled with Chicken, Vegetables, and Teriyaki Sauce
I don’t know how I forgot to take a photo of this, too, but apparently I did. This was one we were really looking forward to, heard hyped up a lot, and even had to skip it the first time we wanted it (after we got the Griddled Cheese in Greece) because the line was obscenely long, but it was a miss for both of us. To me it almost tasted like sloppy joes. The texture of the meat wasn’t appealing and it was just not pleasing to either of us. Good size and good amount of food for the price, but we’ll be skipping this in the future.
And that’s a wrap on our Epcot food adventures for 2021! This was an incredible trip and making it mostly centered around Food & Wine Festival was so much fun! We made it to Epcot 3 of the 4 days we were there and, while we didn’t try everything on our very long list, we tried a ton of new foods. We shared every single thing we got so we could save stomach space to try as much variety as possible and it was the perfect strategy for us. I hope you enjoyed reading along!
See you again in December for our next trip. 🙂