2018 EPCOT Food & Wine Festival – new buzz for 23rd annual event

Celebrate global flavors at Walt Disney World during the 23rd anniversary of the EPCOT International Food & Wine Festival. Beginning August 30, the yearly culinary highlight serves up 75-days of aromas and flavors of from over 30 global food and beverage marketplaces, special seminars, a festival center, and the nightly Eat to the Beat concert series. And that’s just the front of the menu.

The not-to-be-missed Party for the Senses event will return with five special nights on September 22 in EPCOT’s World ShowPlace pavilion. You’ll also have the opportunity to learn from top culinary icons at workshops and seminars.

Here’s what to expect from this year’s edition of the Food & Wine Festival:

  • The NEW Taste Track global marketplace featuring specialty croissant doughnuts (add gelato for an extra-sweet treat) joins dozens of popular returning marketplaces. For a fourth year, global marketplaces will extend into Future World to offer brand-new taste sensations. Disney chefs are in the kitchen whipping up delicious new bites like Butternut Squash Ravioli with brown butter vinaigrette, Parmesan cheese and pumpkin seeds at The Wine & Dine Studio; Charred Chimichurri Skirt Steak with smoked corn cake, pickled vegetable slaw and cilantro aïoli at Flavors from Fire; and New Brunswick Slider, slow-braised beef brisket “pot roast-style” on a potato roll with horseradish cream, crispy fried onions and pickled vegetables on the side at the Hops & Barley
  • The NEW “Sunday Brunch with the Chef” series in World ShowPlace will kick off Sept. 2 with Top Chef All-Star Richard Blais and continue on select Sundays through Nov. 11 with a lineup that includes Jamie Deen, Tiffani Thiessen, Masaharu Morimoto, Buddy Valastro, Art Smith, Geoffrey Zakarian, Carla Hall and Alex Guarnaschelli.
  • Eat to the Beat concerts – 225 shows in all – will rev up the America Gardens Theatre stage three times each night with new musical acts including Vertical Horizon, Sheila E, 98 Degrees, MercyMe and Glass Tiger, along with returning festival favorites spanning a broad range of eras and genres from rock and pop to rhythm and blues.
  • The grandest of the festival’s don’t-miss tasting events, Party for the Senses at World ShowPlace, will welcome acclaimed chefs and vintners Sept. 22, Oct. 6, 13, 20 and Nov. 10 to showcase creative bites and palate-pleasing sips with sensational live entertainment.
  • “Mix It, Make It, Celebrate It!” hands-on workshops Wednesdays and Thursdays will offer new opportunities for guests to interact with visiting chefs, bakers, mixologists and other pros. Event hosts and topics will be announced this summer.
  • Popular TV chefs and other culinary icons will entertain guests and inspire their palates at festival seminars and other events. Just a few of the big names on tap are Robert Irvine, Maneet Chauhan, Jet Tila, Shaun O’Neale, Keegan Gerhard, Dan Pashman and Rock Harper.

Throughout the festival, you can pair wines, beers and cocktails with savory and sweet dishes as you stroll the park and let a complimentary festival passports be your guide. As you explore, you’ll find something for everyone in the family:

  • A “Ratatouille”-inspired adventure is back as Chef Remy encourages families to play together during Remy’s Ratatouille Hide ‘n’ Squeak scavenger hunt. This year Remy is hiding in all new locations!

Other returning favorites include:

  • The complimentary Back to Basics weekend series offered in the Festival Center will share epicurean tips and tricks from the pros. Book and bottle signings by some of the world’s top vintners will be available, and The Chocolate Experience: From Bean to the Bar, hosted by Ghirardelli, will offer guest samples.
  • Culinary Demonstrations and Beverage Seminars will offer daily learning and tasting sessions at the Festival Center. On select Saturdays, Cheese Seminars will be a fromage fan’s delight.
  • Eat to the Beat Dining Packages and other Specialty Dining and Pairing events will be on tap at a number of Epcot participating restaurants. Bookings for special programming and premium festival events is open now.

Be sure to pick up your festival passport and sip & stroll with friends as you dine-around the World Showcase and into Future World for the 23rd anniversary of the EPCOT International Food & Wine Festival.


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