EPCOT’s International Food & Wine festival officially opens tomorrow, but if you head to the park this afternoon you’ll likely be able to experience some of the options during today’s test run. There are 70 new dishes this year and most of the old favorites (like Canada’s Cheese Soup). Look for more of an international street food feeling this year at the 27 food booths and showcases.
Orlando food critic Scott Joseph got to sample a few of the tasting sized dishes early this year and he has a review up on his blog. A downloadable guide and map are available at Scott’s blog or the official website.
Another change might come as a surprise to long time event attendees. The daily wine seminars and tastings are no longer be free. There is now an $8 fee. Tickets are sold through the reservation system. However, Disney is holding some tickets for sale in the park each day for guests who may not have heard about the change.
Food and Wine runs a long 45 days this year wrapping up on November 8th, which will make it a pretty tight turn around to get the Winter Holiday decorations up at the park.
One of my favorite parts of the Food & Wine Festival are the Eat To The Beat concerts. Plenty of big names this year, and, in what I believe is a first, an American Idol winner.
A full listing of which acts are scheduled below the jump:
The Eat to the Beat! concert series will bring 17 acts – showcasing everything from rock to jazz, funk to pop – to the America Gardens Theatre stage during the 45-day festival. Concerts, which are included with Epcot admission, begin at 5:15, 6:30 and 7:45 p.m. daily. The lineup (subject to change) includes:
Sept. 25-27 Big Bad Voodoo Daddy (“You & Me and The Bottle Makes Three (Tonight)”)
Sept. 28-29 Richard Marx (“Hold On to the Nights”)
Sept. 30-Oct. 3 Starship starring Mickey Thomas (“We Built This City”)
Oct. 4-6 En Vogue (“Free Your Mind”)
Oct. 7-8 Better Than Ezra (“Good”)
Oct. 9-11 Sister Hazel (“All for You”)
Oct. 12-13 Kool & The Gang (“Celebration”)
Oct. 14-16 Spyro Gyra (“Morning Dance”)
Oct. 17-18 Jon Secada (“Just Another Day”)
Oct. 19-20 Sister Sledge (“We Are Family”)
Oct. 21-22 Vanessa Carlton (“A Thousand Miles”)
Oct. 23-25 Taylor Dayne (“Tell It to My Heart”)
Oct. 26-28 Boyz II Men (“Motownphilly”)
Oct. 29-31 John Waite (“Missing You”)
Nov. 1-2 Taylor Hicks (“Do I Make You Proud”)
Nov. 3-5 Billy Ocean (“Caribbean Queen”)
Nov. 6-8 Los Lobos (“La Bamba”)