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Old 11-02-2006, 09:39 AM   #16
kyirish25
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Great review and pictures!
Looking forward to the others.
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Old 11-02-2006, 11:32 AM   #17
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Ok B I made it over here.

Not that I didn't have any faith in you because I knew you wrote awesome trip reports but your food report is just as good! You know how to describe the dish enough for my taste buds to salivate (never mind the pictures!). Thanks for letting me know about this trippie and I'll be anxiously awaiting more!
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Old 11-02-2006, 12:52 PM   #18
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Brenda....great report girl. But then again, all your TR's are great. Any of your meals get interrupted by the viewing of the Cards crushing the Tigers?

Later, Nancy
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Old 11-02-2006, 01:12 PM   #19
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subscribing - great writing! Food looked incredible - even the disgusting bread pudding! LOL.
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Old 11-02-2006, 01:46 PM   #20
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Great start to a food trip report... I'm looking forward to this!

I love the food porn pics!

Of course you and Jason are cute!!!
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Old 11-02-2006, 08:05 PM   #21
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Day 2: Dipping a Tentative Toe into the Waters of the Food & Wine Festival

October 19th: random food samples and a Food & Wine pairing at Coral Reef.

Welcome back for the second day of dining ala' J&B and thanks for reading - the big lesson of the day was this: erratic eating habits, 90-degree heat, and alcohol mixing do not produce Magical Memories on Mission Space. Learn from our pain, people.

We thought we were going to get to Epcot with time to spare to grab a light breakfast at the Fountainview Bakery. The plan was then to check out a few rides in FutureWorld before scoping out the food and wine booths for the afternoon until our 3:30 Food & Wine pairing at Coral Reef. It was a good plan...some day I'd like to try it.

I'll spare you the details of our journey to Epcot (you can read about them in my trip report, coming soon to a thread near you!), suffice to say that by the time we got to the Fountainview Bakery it was nearly 11AM. Much to our buttery, croissant-craving disappointment we discovered that the Fountainview Bakery had been turned into the Fountainview Bar for the F&W Festival. It's a great place to get some booze but don't ask for any food.

Well, it was a hot day and I needed something in my tummy before taking on the world showcase. We ended up at the Electric Umbrella where we each had a "cheeseburger" (not sure if that was USDA graded beef... ) and some fries with a nice cold bottle of water. This was one of those meals of desperation - we ate enough to keep us going in the heat and that was it. It wasn't awful but it wasn't very good, either. I love me a good cheeseburger, but this entry can best be summed up as follows: Would anyone else like a bite of banality?

From the Umbrella we wandered over to the world showcase...we haven't been to the F&W Festival since October 2004 and there is much anticipatory drooling as we peruse the menu options.

First stop: Ireland; isn't it cute?



As evidence of my warm-weather brilliance I proceed to order the Irish Cream Trifle with a sample of O'Mara's Irish Cream to wash it down. This was a yummy beginning to the day - the raspberry jam in the trifle paired well with the Irish Cream. But if I had it to do over I would have saved this for a less hot day or for an evening.



As an aside...future photos will contain less of me and more of the food, which is certainly what we all would rather be looking at.

From the little thatched food booth we wandered over to the UK where they just happen to be handing out tickets for a free beer sampling...the first of the day scheduled at 12:30pm in the little garden at Rose & Crown. Just to reiterate what many of you may know...the tickets for these free events are usually handed out first-come, first-serve about 30 minutes prior to the event...if you want to attend something be prepared to stand in line at least 30 minutes prior to distribution to ensure a place for yourself and anyone else you're with.

So, with beer tasting tickets in hand and half-an-hour to kill we wander over to our friends in France, where the DIS scuttlebutt has me looking for alcoholic squishees. We found the booth of my dreams next to the stand that sells crepes, but be forewarned...cash only for these booze-infused taste sensations. There were two squishee choices: Lemon Citron or Grand Marnier. Given the heat we opted for the more refreshing Lemon, but vowed to return one day to try the Grand Marnier.

Here is my impression of Roger Ebert with a Lemon Citron Squishee:



This was a fine, fine drink. Perhaps not worth $7, but it's vacation and if you can't splurge on a frosty vodka-infused lemomade slushee in a plastic martini glass on vacation, then when can you?

By this time the heat and the alcohol were getting to me...I'm usually not such a wimp, but I was still bouncing back from surgery in September and maybe I shouldn't have taken that darvocett with "lunch." D'oh!

We wandered back to the Rose and Crown and waited with many other warm, thirsty people in a shady area that didn't get even a hint of a breeze. I'm married to a lovely man who went off and bought me two bottles of water that I proceeded to suck down in ten minutes. By that time we were being ushered into the beer tasting, officially called International Beers of the World. It was sponsored by InBev and featured five beers: Becks Premium Light, Brahma, Hoegaarden, Stella Artois, and Bass Ale.

Here's a picture of our table and the beery goodness placed before us:


We were seated at a table for four, which is how most of the tables were set up at the tasting so there was no beer-hogging if someone found a beer they really liked. I tasted each of the beers but decided to play it safe and not have too much to drink - Jason didn't mind finishing my portions.

The gentleman leading the seminar gave us a brief history lesson and then took us through each beer, emphasizing aroma, color, and taste. In some ways it reminded me of a wine tasting. My general thoughts: Becks was OK, nothing to get excited about; Stella was tasty and did you know that Artois is pronounced "Our-Twa" rather than "Our-Toes"? Brahma was interesting but too citrus-y for me; Bass was acceptable; and Hoegaarden was a Belgian beer that I didn't like at all.

One thing that I think might have helped is if there had been water on the tables so we could rinse out the taste of one beer before trying the next. Maybe it was just me, but I thought it would have been a nice touch, especially in the heat. We were sharing a table with two ladies from Florida and they both commented more than once about the unseasonal heat that week.

Anyway our next stop after doing things that didn't involve food was Coral Reef, the restaurant on the back side of The Living Seas. We were very excited about this because we'd never had an opportunity to try a F&W event. This was a terrific experience and the standard by which we measured the other two F&W events we had planned later in our vacation.

There was a cast member waiting at a podium outside the restaurant who checked our names against a reservation list. He then directed us toward a door marked for CMs only and said that is where we should wait for the event to begin. Imagine our surprise when we walked through the door to find a small, private waiting area and a wait-staff member handing out glasses of chilled sparkling cider. I'm not exactly sure who was in charge of the event, but someone official looking told us that because of the heat they had decided to offer everyone a little refresher before heading in to the main dining area of the restaurant. Two thumbs up for thoughtfulness! It was a cool, dimly lit room and that cider tasted great - we were probably only there for about ten minutes but that was all it took to feel 100% better.

The chef, Marco Chaves, came out and spoke briefly about the menu he and his staff had had prepared for us and then a representative from Merryvale spoke about the wines we would be having with our food. We were then led into Coral Reef, which was the first time Jay and I had ever seen it; we thought it was just beautiful.



This picture doesn't really do justice to the aquarium that takes up the entire wall, but I wanted to at least give those of you who've never been there an idea of what it looks like in the restaurant. There were several tables reserved in the top section of the restaurant and they were all set with wine glasses, place mats, flatware, and a menu detailing both the food and wine selections we were going to have. The menus were a lovely touch and were signed by the chef and the winery representative.

Another nice touch - rather than allowing a stampede towards the tables, the wait-staff seated people at tables based on the number in their party, ensuring that everyone could enjoy the event with the people they were in attendance with. I mention this because it was not the case at our other events and led to much heated discussion which you will be fortunate enough to read about later on in this thread.

BTW - we were seated with a wonderful couple who also happened to be a "J" and a Brenda! They were F&W and Disney Dining experts who shared all kinds of advice and experiences with us. We hope to meet up with them again next Fall - they really helped make the afternoon even more memorable and enjoyable for us.

First Pairing: Sauteed Shrimp served over Pasta tossed with a fresh Tomato Sauce with Kalamata Olives and Fresh Parmesan Cheese; paired with Merryvale Starmont Chardonnay.



What can I say? I love shrimp...I love pasta...I love light, red sauces with my pasta...I love chardonnay...and I love the fact that those olives are on the outer edge of my food so that my fork doesn't even have to touch them! This was a fabulous dish and not at all heavy, thanks to the small pasta noodles and the light sauce. The wine was perfect - refreshing and well rounded with some subtle hints of fruit (mostly apple and pear for me).

Second Pairing: Paella; paired with Merryvale Caneros Pinot Noir.



Well, that's some fully loaded paella, isn't it? Clams, shrimp, chicken, and chorizo sausage made for another yummy dish even though it was a bit spicy for my taste. I also don't like clams so Jason had to suffer by eating mine. The wine was a good complement although I didn't finish this one because reds tend to give me a headache if I drink too much of them.

Third Pairing: Flourless Chocolate Cake with Dried Cherries, Fresh Figs, and Ganache; paired with Merryvale Starmont Cabernet Sauvignon.



You can't go wrong with chocolate for dessert in my book! This was a real treat...dark and rich and moist. I didn't eat the figs but the cherries were lovely, especially dipped in that ganache. The cabernet reminded me a lot of a merlot - it was a heavy wine with a great aroma and it really did go very well with this dessert.

The chef came out to talk with us briefly once more and then the event was over - there was no push to make us leave, however; which I thought was a nice touch. We exchanged email addresses with our new food buddies and then decided to head back to SSR for some pool time. We ended up at the Adventurer's Club later that evening where we finally tried the Kungaloosh!

There was no more food to speak of on this day.

Keep your eyes peeled for day 3 which will include Kona Cafe and Raglan Road!!
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Old 11-03-2006, 10:22 AM   #22
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Nancy, I offered to change our dining plans around so that we could focus more on baseball during this trip but Jason made a command decision that after the last two years we would be better off just doing our thing and catching up on the games when we returned to the room. So...the only game we watched from start to finish once we arrived at WDW was Game 5 of the World Series (I guess if we were going to pick one to watch that was the one!).

Now I am sitting at work listening to the Illuminations soundtrack feeling all sad and weepy because we are not at WDW right now.



Quote:
Originally Posted by cntkg1
Brenda....great report girl. But then again, all your TR's are great. Any of your meals get interrupted by the viewing of the Cards crushing the Tigers?

Later, Nancy
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Old 11-03-2006, 12:37 PM   #23
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Thanks for posting!

Your witty commentary reminds me of Mr. Disney and goodness knows, that is high praise.

Keep those reviews coming!

--penny
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Old 11-03-2006, 01:28 PM   #24
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Thank you very much - my reviews don't even come close to Mr. Disney, but I'm flattered by the comparison nonetheless.


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Thanks for posting!

Your witty commentary reminds me of Mr. Disney and goodness knows, that is high praise.

Keep those reviews coming!

--penny
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Old 11-03-2006, 10:04 PM   #25
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Day 3: What does Barry Manilow have to do with breakfast and will he skip dinner?

Hiya friends!

I'm back with day three of J&B's Adventures in Disney Digestion and have we got a belly full today...

October 20: Breakfast at Kona Cafe, Lunch at Artists Palette, and Dinner at Raglan Road.

Like many couples who have been together a long time, Jason and I have developed certain vacation traditions. There is the 'vacation hasn't really begun until we've had a massage' tradition; there is the 'guess how many peanuts are in the Southwest Airlines snack pack' tradition; and, there is the 'it's not a trip to WDW without breakfast at the Kona' tradition.

So, like the good, anal-retentive wife I am, I made an ADR at the Kona Cafe six months prior to our arrival date...breakfast is calling and it's warm and sticky.

I have to share something with you before I get to the food part of this segment...I hope you'll forgive me. I woke up that morning with a certain song going through my head - I don't know why; it's a puzzlement. But there was no getting past it...Copacabana...in full stereo...buzzing around in my little 'ol brain. It didn't take long for me to share the joy with Jay...why don't you sing along with me?

At the Kona, the Kona Cafe at the Poly
Their breakfast special's a calorie-laden folly;
At the Kona, the Kona Cafe at the Poly
Tonga Toast, sausage, and coffee -
At the Kona...we ate too much.

OK, it's not perfect; I can admit that. But it's not bad for a first attempt at 8AM.

Here's a picture of the signage that provided me with so much inspiration:



Our reservation was for 9:30 AM and thanks to some creative transportation thinking on our part we were at the podium 15 minutes early and were seated right away. Our waitress was...Brenda! This is starting to get weird - I never run across people with the same name as me and now I've met two in less than 24 hours...hmmmm...I will have to ponder this over some coffee.

For the first time ever we decide to order the Kona pressed pot. I don't know why we waited so long to try this...well, actually I do. As we've aged our tastebuds have grown a bit more dull and coffee doesn't taste nearly as bitter as it did when we were crazy and young. And then there's that whole caffeine rush to consider. Regardless, this yielded some very fine cuppa joe:


There is not much discussion of menu options for us at this meal - we know what we want and we're not afraid to ask for it.

We started off with the fresh fruit bowl - I can't resist this stuff when we're in Florida during the Fall. Those of you who are landlocked like us and who live in states where produce dies this time of year will understand best...fruit tastes so good in October when I'm in Florida...on vacation...not working...fruit in a bowl is way better than a Yoplait Whip at my desk.


Look at that fruit...plump sweet grapes, juicy cantaloupe, refreshing honeydew, and the best part...almost no pineapple!! What a great way to start the morning and I'm certain that this healthy choice will negate the calories to come.

I ordered french toast and sausage to offset the fruit...it was very tasty and I wish I was eating it right now...with lots of maple syrup to dip the fruit in.


Jason is a purist...he always orders the Tonga Toast and swears that it is fabulous. I'll take his word for it because I'm not crazy about eating anything that has bananas in it unless it ends with the word Foster. Here now, for your viewing pleasure, is the Big T before Jason assaulted it:


And here is a picture of the partially decimated Tonga Toast, to give you an idea of what comprises its guts. For anyone who may be interested, the glass of juice in the last picture is Lokoi juice - it's a blend of passion fruit, orange, and guava juices. Jason says it's great but I tried a sip of it and I think it put hair on my chest.


Overall this was a terrific start to our day - great food, great service, and a bag of kona beans to take home and savor through the cold winter months. Actually, we're so nice we bought two bags of beans and then gave one to my parents before they started to get on our nerves. We highly recommend the Kona for breakfast based on service, menu selection, and atmopshere and give it our highest rating: 5 Barry Manilow albums out of a possible 5.

Coming soon..Artists Palette and Irish gluttony at Raglan Road.
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2009 Food Reviews: Pie That Brownie, Fruitcake!
2008 Food Reviews: We Smelled It; It Had to be Eaten!
2007 Food Reviews: Hungry are the Damned!!
2007 Food Reviews: The Food was not Undelicious!
2006 Food Reviews: As God As My Witness, I'll Never Be Hungry Again!


Join us on the community board for non-Disney food porn and continued good-time tomfoolery: Bendy-Friendies V.4
Feeling Adventurous? Visit Our Food & Travel Blog: Gastropod Travels

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Old 11-04-2006, 07:50 AM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oybolshoi
The gentleman leading the seminar gave us a brief history lesson and then took us through each beer, emphasizing aroma, color, and taste. In some ways it reminded me of a wine tasting. My general thoughts: Becks was OK, nothing to get excited about; Stella was tasty and did you know that Artois is pronounced "Our-Twa" rather than "Our-Toes"? Brahma was interesting but too citrus-y for me; Bass was acceptable; and Hoegaarden was a Belgian beer that I didn't like at all.

I'm totally loving your report, but very disappointed that you didn't like Hoegaarden. It's one of my favorite beers! Anyway, all is forgiven because you really do take lovely food pictures and provide a very funny running commentary!
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Old 11-04-2006, 08:15 AM   #27
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anyone care to guess the carbs in that great Tonga toast!!. If I want to off my DH it would put him in a diabetic coma for sure.lol!
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Old 11-04-2006, 09:23 AM   #28
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Great descriptions and photos
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Old 11-04-2006, 09:30 AM   #29
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Awww, you're killing me Brenda, killing me...with those photos and review of Kona Cafe. PLUS..now I've got Barry Manilow stuck in MY head

But, really, great photos and reviews. I've never been to Kona, but I think that's gonna change!

I tried to take food photos this trip, but I was always forgetting my camera, or forgetting to take a photo brfore I dug into my food.
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Old 11-04-2006, 01:24 PM   #30
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Brenda,

Okay, I am SOOOO hungry now!!!

I hear you about the fruit! Hubby lives on fruit during the spring and summer then fall comes along and he goes into a fruit depression. Another great reason to cruise in October!!

Keep the reports coming!!!!!
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