Walt Disney World guests can sip great wines, savor new tastes and enjoy live entertainment all day long as the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival celebrates 15 years of Delicious Discoveries begins on Oct. 1, continuing daily through Nov. 14, 2010.
The six-week outdoor festival at Disney’s Epcot theme park serves up authentic cuisine; wine, beer and spirits; entertainment; and cultural exhibits of more than 25 international regions. Exotic marketplaces from South Korea to Belgium offer exciting taste treats. The festival is the largest food and wine event of its kind in the world, beginning at the Festival Welcome Center in Future World and fanning around the promenade encircling World Showcase Lagoon.
But if you can’t wait until tomorrow to sample food and wine from around the world, an unannounced festival “soft opening” takes place today from 1 – 8pm around the World Showcase. It’s a great way to try out the dishes without waiting in the long lines that opening weekend brings annually.
Here are some facts about the 15th annual event:
· More than 300 national and international wines
· 45 fabulous days long
· More than 75 kinds of international foods, each appetizer-sized portion priced $3-$8
· More than 270 chefs including America’s most celebrated culinarians and Walt Disney World chefs
· 405 wine and beer seminars
· More than 1,200 fireworks rockets exploding each night over World Showcase Lagoon in“IllumiNations: Reflections of Earth” grand finale to the festival
· 135 Eat to the Beat! concerts performed
· 33,000 bottles of wine and champagne
· 690,000 sumptuous samplings
· 338,000 wine glasses
· 100,000 desserts including freshly baked waffles with berry compote and whipped cream (Belgium marketplace), pear streusel pudding cake (Desserts & Champagne marketplace) and chocolate cannoli (Italy marketplace)
· 3,000 gallons of soup, including best-selling cheddar cheese soup (Canada marketplace), chicken soup with rice (Puerto Rico marketplace) and bison chili with wild mushrooms (United States marketplace)
Browsing the International Food and Wine Festival is included with Epcot admission, but each small plate of food costs roughly $2 – $6. Each booth accepts cash and credit cards for easy feasting.