The most popular annual event at the Walt Disney World Resort is the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival. If you have never visited, you may ask "What is all of the hype about? Is is really worth visiting?" Our answer is a resounding YES and here is why.
20th Epcot International Food & Wine FestivalThe Epcot International Food & Wine Festival has gone through numerous changes throughout the past 20 years as it has experimented and grown. Some once free events have been replaced with pay-for counterparts, but the overall festival is bigger and better than ever. Most of the Festival treats can be easily enjoyed by everyone who visits Epcot with a regular admission ticket.
The Epcot Food & Wine Festival can be discussed in 5 parts:
Great International Food ChoicesNo matter what age you are, you are able to enjoy the amazing array of food choices from around the world that is available in the over 28 marketplaces surrounding the 1.3 mile walk around Epcot's World Showcase. Each year a large number of guest favorites return and new items are added to temp your taste buds. The prices are kept reasonable from $2.00 - $7.50 for appetizer portions with most items being in the $3.50 - $5.00 range.
Wine, Beer, and BeveragesThere is a seemingly unending choice of wines, beers, and alcoholic beverages to pair with the food choices in each of the marketplaces around the World Showcase to try in reasonably priced, but small portions.
Inexpensive Demonstrations and SeminarsThere are many daily cooking demonstrations, wine tastings, and mixology classes that last approximately 45 minutes for only 45 minutes and including tasting the dishes and drinks presented As a special treat it is possible to see some celebrity chefs during these economical events like Robert Irvine that we saw last year.
Free Concerts by Recognizable PerformersThe bands and musical acts that Disney books each year for the FREE Eat To The Beat Concert series improves each year. 2015 brngs names such as: Rick Springfield, 38 Special, Everclear, Smash Mouth, Air Supply Boyz II Men, Dennis DeYoung, The Pointer Sisters, and Starship.
Celebrity Chefs and Special Dining ExperiencesDisney has reached out and found a great number of celebrity chefs to attend the recent Festivals. This year even includes the cast of The Chew along with favorites like: Robert Irvine, Cat Cora, Amanda Freitag, Carla Hall, Buddy Valastro, Kevin Dundon & Andrew Zimmern. They are appearing in a variety of special dining events (for an extra fee) and there are also a wide array of special dining events and night time events that you can buy tickets for during the lengthy Festival.
So Many Reasons To Love The F&W FestivalThere really are so many different reasons to love the Epcot International Food Wine Festival. The top of the list probably starts with the fact that this is an event that is best enjoyed by adults and you do not need to bring your children with you. If you have been looking for an excuse for going to Disney World without children HERE IT IS!!!
Although we cannot claim to have been at all 20 of the F&W Festivals, we have been attending for more than 10 years and have seen a lot of changes. There are some things that we will miss (like the Samuel Adams History of Beer seminar and tasting) and the free wine tastings, the vast expansion of the Food, Wine, & Beer offerings in the increasing number of Marketplaces are a big plus
The number of celebrity chefs participating seems to increase each year and there are always new additions to make it better and better.
We also love the constantly improving lineup of free concerts that cost upwards of $50 per ticket to see the same performers outside of Disney.
We are hooked and you will be too if you visit. It is not cheap so plan on spending some cash, but you will have a great time. If you are able avoid Fridays and Saturdays as all of Florida visits this popular Festival and it becomes very crowded.