An anniversary tradition: Epcot’s Food and Wine Festival

Today is the 15th anniversary of the day that Mrs. Lo probably made the biggest day of her life and decided to exchange marriage vows with yours truly. For the past several anniversaries (we’ve lost track at this point) we’ve gone to the Food and Wine Festival at Epcot to celebrate. With recent events we weren’t sure we’d be able to make it this year, but lo and behold the planets aligned and we were once again able to go. Complicating matters was the fact that I was determined to keep up my no meat red meat/pork or fowl eating habits, something I knew would be severely tested by Australia’s delicious lamb chops and Belgium’s short rib and waffles. How did I do? This is one of those stories better told with pictures than words, so here’s the day according to Instagram.

Here we are inside the from gate, in one of our rare photos together. Due to our height differential it took us about 15 minutes to get both of us in the frame.

Here we are inside the front gate, in one of our rare photos together. Due to our height differential it took us about 15 minutes to get both of us in the frame.

Inside the Festival Welcome Center.

Our customary prosecco toast upon arriving inside the Festival Welcome Center. Happy Anniversary to us!

Our customary prosecco toast upon arriving inside the Festival Welcome Center. Happy Anniversary to us!

Disney sending mixed messages?

One of the first signs you see inside the Welcome Center is "please drink responsibly." One of the next is these classy "beer goggles."

One of the first things you see inside the Welcome Center is a “please drink responsibly” sign. One of the next are these classy “beer goggles.”

So, what’s it wrapped in?

Scotland was new to the festival this year I think. Some things do not need a vegetarian equivalent. I think it is safe to say that haggis is most definitely one of those things.

Scotland was new to the festival this year I think. Some things do not need a vegetarian equivalent. I think it is safe to say that haggis is most definitely one of those things.

Hawaii.

Pork sliders and tuna poke. Both were excellent. I took the smallest of tastes of the slider to ensure that Mrs. Lo was not lying about it's deliciousness. I did not want to risk misleading you. The tuna was straight up delicious though, raw and tasty and served over a bed of seaweed salad.

Pork sliders and tuna poke. Both were excellent. I took the smallest of tastes of the slider to ensure that Mrs. Lo was not lying about it’s deliciousness. I did not want to risk misleading you. The tuna was straight up delicious though, raw and tasty and served over a bed of seaweed salad.

Opa!

Griddled Greek cheese with pistachios and honey in the foreground, with the Greek sampler plate in the back. Both delicious, but especially the wonderful garlic flavor of the eggplant dip.

Griddled Greek cheese with pistachios and honey in the foreground, with the Greek sampler plate in the back. Both delicious, but especially the wonderful garlic flavor of the creamy eggplant dip.

My absolute favorite thing about the festival is the lobster and seafood pie on offer in Ireland. My love for it is borderline obscene, and I do not allow myself to be photographed with it. Just take my word for it, that thing is delicious. Being a good lad, I eschewed a Guinness to wash it down, which I think may have been a first.

Bon jour, France

The greatest of all of the "hidden Mickeys" in Disney World. The buttery escargot in brioche with a wonderful unoaked Chardonnay to accompany. Snails are shellfish, right? They were yesterday at least.

The greatest of all of the “hidden Mickeys” in Disney World. The buttery escargot in brioche with a wonderful unoaked Chardonnay to accompany. Snails are shellfish, right? They were yesterday at least.

Belgium, you looked delicious.

Braised short rib over a Belgium waffle.

Braised short rib over a Belgium waffle. Mrs. Lo had this one, though again I withstood a small sampling just so that I can confirm to you that it is fantastic.

Mmmmm…sushi.

The spicy tuna and salmon hand roll in Japan was simple but extremely well executed, especially the rice.

The spicy tuna and salmon hand roll in Japan was simple but extremely well executed, especially the rice.

The greatest country in all of the world, the country of Cheese.

Rich and delicious almond crusted cheese soufflé along with the cheese plate. I wasn't a fan of the wine that came with the soufflé (too jammy for me) but loved the goat's milk gouda and the creamy, salty, wonderful brie.

Rich and delicious almond crusted cheese soufflé along with the cheese plate. I wasn’t a fan of the wine that came with the soufflé (too jammy for me) but loved the goat’s milk gouda and the creamy, salty, wonderful brie. Is the country of Cheese handing out citizenship? Cause I’m all in if so.

A quick shout out to the German beer pavilion. For the most part I steered clear of the beer to help with the calorie consumption, but I did have a Schofferhofer grapefruit beer and it was excellent. I tweeted at that time that in my younger “authenticity is everything” days that I would have mocked this beer relentlessly, and that is very true. It is also very true that I was an idiot. (BTW, if you are into the grapefruit beer, Cask and Larder makes an excellent one – better even than this one – that you should check out.)

Margarita time. Off menu.

This technically wasn't part of the festival menu, but the avocado margarita at La Cava del Tequila may have been my favorite thing I had al day. Refreshing, creamy, and slightly sweet but still packing a punch. It's not on the menu, but ask and you shall receive.

This technically wasn’t part of the festival menu, but the avocado margarita at La Cava del Tequila may have been my favorite thing I had all day. Refreshing, creamy, and slightly sweet and savory due to the red Himalayan sea salt that rimmed the glass, but still packing a punch. It’ wasn’t on the menu, but ask and you shall receive.

I needed the margarita since I knew Australia and its delicious lamb chop were ahead. To say I love the lamb chop is possibly the biggest understatement I could make. I bypassed it this year though due to my no meat commitment as well as honoring my son’s “please do not eat any cuddly animals” plea. So, no lamb for me this year, but it did smell rather amazing as usual.

Vegan cake?

This vegan chocolate cake was surprisingly good, but it's still a poor substitution for actual cake. Give me gluten!

This vegan chocolate cake was surprisingly good, but it’s still a poor substitution for actual cake. Give me gluten!

So, another festival in the books. There was nothing new that blew me away this year, but it was still a wonderful way to spend the day, despite the fact that it was unexpectedly face of the sun hot again here in Central Florida out of nowhere. All of that sweating helped burn off a few of the excess calories, so it was all good.

Cheers.

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Posted on October 17, 2013, in Food and Drink and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Congratulations! Mazel Tov! So happy you got to celebrate as you should have. 🙂

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