Monday, July 28, 2014

Planning for the 2014 Epcot International Food and Wine Festival

By Nick

The dates for the 2014 Epcot International Food and Wine Festival this year are September 19th- November 10th.

I usually check out what the Disney Parks Blog, the Disney Food Blog, the Food Festival Blog, and The Tips From the Disney Divas and Devos, where I am a contributing writer, have posted for the latest information and tips for planning.

There are several tastings, seminars, and special events, many of which require reservations. The phone lines to book these experiences opened for Annual Passholders, DVC Members and Golden Oak residents on Friday July 25th.
Chase Disney Visa card holders can start booking tomorrow, July 29th, at 7am.
Booking for the general public starts 7am July 31st, so check ahead as to what you would like to attend, and be prepared! Premium events may be reserved by phone at 407-WDW-FEST (407-939-3378).

This year, our Food and Wine visit time will be very short, so planning will be extra important. We are only going to be in Walt Disney World one day before going on a 4 day cruise on the Dream, and then we are staying one evening when we return from the cruise.

But on a year when we visit for a week, my plan of attack goes like this:

First I check out park hours during my visit. I'm a morning person, so the plan is to go to one of the other parks with early Extra Magic Hours, have lunch at that park, and take an afternoon break. We'll then visit Epcot during the evening. If possible, we avoid the weekends. That's when a lot of locals go and it gets VERY crowded.
On 2 days, usually Friday and whichever day Epcot has early EMHs, we'll hit the food booths early, and visit another park in the evening.

Also, as soon as the menus come out for the booths, we'll go through it and decide what interests us.
I make a copy of this paired down list, and pair it down even further by highlighting the must haves.
Pacing yourself is key, for a variety of reasons, which is why I pick those must haves

Financially, this is an expensive event if you plan to try a bit of everything. Sure, on the surface, $3-$7 for a sample may not seem like much, but this adds up quickly!
As for paying at the booths, we get gift cards. It's quicker than cash, and an easier way to keep track of what you are spending. Barbie has very generous family members who usually give us gift cards for birthdays and holidays, and we save them for this event.

Then there is the alcohol, which can add up even faster than the food.
I have tried the suggested food and wine pairings in years past, and then had a beer or 2, and then a mixed drink. This is a bad idea. Trust me!

I hope you enjoy the Epcot International Food and Wine Festival as much as we do every year!

1 comment:

  1. When I do go during this festival, I also keep checking the Disney Food Blog as they usually have one detailed blog about what is available for people with food allergies!


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