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Old 01-10-2012, 03:33 PM   #31
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Okay, here we go with DAY 5.

We woke up very early because we were checking out of Jambo and into Kidani this morning.

I ran down to the Mara to get us some breakfast -- a Mickey Waffle, and the African Breakfast Platter. I didn't get pics of these. DJ thought the African breakfast was so-so. The waffle was good as usual.

Our move was very simple. Bell services moved our bags for us, and we walked from Jambo to Kidani (not bad at all -- only took a few minutes).

We went to our room, and OMG the location could NOT be beat! So close to the lobby, a corner room with incredible views!





Honestly, this is the best view I've ever had at any Disney hotel ever. The animals seemed like they were right in front of us. Just amazing. That's not a zoom lens on those pics, either.

We didn't have a whole lot of time to relax, though, as we had a lunch ADR at Via Napoli.

Let me preface this by saying we are both of Italian descent, and are Italian food snobs (c'mon, we live in northern NJ, and I'm from Brooklyn ) So we were very pleasantly surprised with the food at Via Napoli.

DJ started with the fried calamari:

I don't eat seafood, but DJ loved the calamari. He said it was perfect.

And I started with the arancini (rice balls):

Delicious!

For our entrees, we each got individual pizzas. According to the receipt, one is called Carciofi, and the other is called Piccante. I don't see with of them on the current menu, though. They were both great, nice and crispy crust.




We could barely finish them, but of course ordered dessert, anyway, since we were on DxDDP at this point.

Zeppole di Ricotta, and Lemon Sorbetto





It was all so fantastic. We will definitely be going back to Via Napoli. Loved it!
DJ had a beer -- Menabrea 1846, at $9.00. Between that and the tip, our OOP cost here was 26.00. The total paid for by DxDDP was $88.39.

Coming up next -- more Epcot, and more Food & Wine... and so much beer hahaha
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Old 01-11-2012, 02:19 PM   #32
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Oops, totally forgot to put in the pics of our room!









Also forgot -- since we were on DxDDP for this portion of the trip, we got 2 refillable mugs (value was $30.87). I really miss when the mugs were resort-specific. These are just so generic. Glad I still have my CBR, All Star Music, Pop, and AKL mugs from previous trips. Oh, and my YOAMD mug, too.

Okay, just wanted to get those pics in -- more to come!
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Old 01-29-2012, 03:00 PM   #33
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Just found your trip report and am all caught up. Subbing.
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Old 02-27-2012, 05:36 PM   #34
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Hey everyone! So sorry it's been long since I've posted! I actually (FINALLY!) got a job and it's been pretty hectic lately. I promise, an update is coming soon! Thank you all for sticking around
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Old 03-09-2012, 10:43 AM   #35
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DAY 5 CONTINUES...

After our very-filling (and delicious!) lunch at Via Napoli, we were ready to do some walking around World Showcase.

It was PACKED. Even when we first arrived for our 12:20 ADR at Via Napoli, we noticed that it was very crowded - and that most everyone seemed pretty hammered already Lots of drunken revelers. And a TON of LSU fans, for some reason. Everywhere we went, we saw crowds of them. I kept looking for Corey and Julie from the podcast crew, but no such luck.

Anyway, we decided we wanted to get in on this drunken revelry, too... so the beer drinking began.

We tried lots of different kinds, starting at the Sam Adams booth and eventually getting to the UK pavilion. The British Revolution was about to play, so we got a couple of beers from the Rose & Crown and made our way to the courtyard.

There were people waiting already, and we struck up conversations with a few of them. I love that about watching the band back there -- people always seems very willing to be friendly and chat.

We ended up staying for THREE sets of the British Revolution, getting more beers from the pub in between sets. This was the first time ever that I had to stand in line *outside* of the pub (and then wait a little while once I got inside, too). It was just that crowded!

By this time, we were having a blast and feeling no pain We decided that we wanted to stick around Epcot a little longer than we'd originally planned, so I cancelled our dinner ADR at Crystal Palace. That was a rough one. I love that place, and I love my Eeyore... but we just weren't that hungry, and didn't want to rush to MK, so... Crystal Palace will have to wait till next time.

Things get a teensy bit fuzzy here. I'm pretty sure we hit a couple more of the festival booths before heading over to MK for Extra Magic Hours.

That just turned out to be a bad idea. We grabbed a very late dinner at Pecos Bill's (again), but that was really the only good thing. It was cold and raining, my legs were killing me, POTC was broken down... so we called it a night.

Here are some pics from the day. I'll add descriptions later when I can look at my receipts -- not sure exactly what everything is.

Here's us



This is from the New Zealand booth -- Lamb Slider with Tomato Chutney


Also New Zealand -- Seared Sea Scallop with Kumara-Red Curry Puree and Apple Radish Salad


Here we are with the guys from British Revolution. So much fun!


From the France booth -- Escargots Persillade en Brioche. DJ loved these. Me? I wouldn't touch them with a 10 foot pole :P


Also from France -- Coq au Vin sur gratin de macaroni (Red Wine braised Chicken, Mushrooms, Pearl Onions, and Macaroni Gratin)


Cindy's Castle, all decked out for Christmas!


Up next - Day 6, which includes breakast at Boma, pool time at Kidani Village, back to MK, Caliornia Grill, and Epcot again!
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Old 03-09-2012, 06:02 PM   #36
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Here are some of the cuter pre-loaded PhotoPass photos they included. I'll load the actual Photopass pics of us later. I would definitely get Photopass again, and take greater advantage of it. I was wishing we'd taken more pictures when we got the CD in the mail.














I'll post more of the pre-loaded ones later, too
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Old 04-18-2012, 07:32 PM   #37
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As soon as we got back to the room on Day 5, I flopped into bed. I was fully exhausted and my legs were in screaming pain (I have bad knees, and on top of that just wasn't used to walking that much every day at the time). I took some ibuprofen and crashed out.

The next morning, we had an ADR at Boma for breakfast. We woke up late, but some managed to get showered and ready, and back over to Jambo, in about 25 minutes flat! Amazing!

Boma was delicious! So many foods to choose from, and everything was hot and fresh.

The only issue we had here was after we got our coffee and juice. We got up to make our first trip to the buffet... and when we got back to our table, it had been cleared! We let a passing server know, and we had coffee and juice again in just a couple of minutes.

Here's a couple of shots of some of the food we ate that morning...





Like I said, it was all super-yummy! Big thumbs up from both of us

Up next -- Day 6 continues with swimming at Kidani, back to MK, California Grill dinner, and more!

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Old 05-28-2012, 12:33 PM   #38
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DAY 6 CONTINUES...

It was time to check out the pool area at Kidani. I brought my point and shoot along to take pictures this time

It was actually raining on and off while we were at the pool, but we didn't mind at all. I mean, we were already wet, right?

This is a beautiful and almost intimate pool area. Smaller than Jambo, and seems cozier somehow.















The slide at this pool was actually pretty intense! And the hot tub was lovely and relaxing (especially in the rain!).

After our poolside fun, it was time to get ready to head over to MK for the last time this trip (waaaah!), and our dinner at California Grill!
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Old 06-12-2012, 03:46 PM   #39
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Okay, we continue on with Sunday, heading to MK after our very enjoyable time in the Kidani pool area.

Our goals here were for DJ to get on BTMRR, for both of us to get on POTC (since it was broken down the night before), and to get a Dole Whip. Mission accomplished on all 3 counts!

We walked on to POTC, then got our Dole Whip (we shared).
Delicious, as always!


It was still rainy/cloudy, and while waiting for DJ to finish with BTMRR, I spied this lovely site:

The photos don't do it justice, but it was so pretty to see a rainbow right over the castle!






I was still waiting for DJ, and feeling a little hungry, so I took off on a mission to find a Mickey pretzel. It felt like I walked all over the place, but I did finally find one (somewhere around Diamond Horseshoe, I think). And it did not disappoint! I saved some for DJ, too.



At this point, we were creeping up on our ADR time for California Grill, so we headed over to the Contemporary.

Our ADR was early, around 5:30 or something, but it was the only time I could get, and I really wanted to try it. I didn't think we'd be there long enough to see Wishes from there, but figured we could go back up later that night to watch.

We went upstairs and took a seat at the bar while they got our table ready. As soon as I looked toward the windows, I was blown away. Every Disney fan needs to experience this view at least once. It was beyond gorgeous.

We got ourselves a pre-dinner drink -- the French Martini. I still think about making this drink at home. It was delicious!



Here's the drink menu:


It wasn't long before we were seated at a table right next to the windows.

Again, the pictures don't do it justice...







Will continue with dinner in my next post. Stay tuned!
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Old 06-16-2012, 03:15 PM   #40
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Our table was decorated with Mickey confetti. I'd mentioned on all our ADRs that we were celebrating DJ's first visit, but Cali Grill was the only place that actually recognized that.



I'm a little unsure about the details of our meal. I think DJ started with the Sashimi, and I started with a Triple Cheese flatbread. The menu might've changed since then.





And a bottle of wine, of course!


Our entrees were the Oak Grilled filet:


And the Grilled Pork tenderloin:


The polenta that came with this was out of this world!!! Both entrees were absolutely delicious and cooked exactly right.

Coffee service (so cute)


Our desserts were Bananas and Caramel (omg this was sooooo good!)


..and the Fall Trio (also good, but not as good as the Bananas!)


We took our time with our dinner, and before long, Wishes was starting.

I didn't take a single picture because I wanted to actually enjoy the moment rather than worrying about my camera. We were out on the observation deck, and it was raining and a little cold, but this was one of my favorite moments of the entire trip, by far. I couldn't help but get misty-eyed! It was just so beautiful. I highly recommend this experience to everyone.

At this point, we decided we'd try to get to Epcot to see Illuminations! We didn't have a lot of time, but we actually made it (with some running)! Another experience I just enjoyed, rather than snapping pictures. I'd never seen it before, believe it or not. Blew me away!

Wishes and Illuminations on the same night, amazing meal at Cali Grill, and we ended the night with a bottle of champagne on our balcony at Kidani... doesn't get much better than that!

Next up - the last day of our trip, where we go back to Epcot for more Food & Wine shenanigans!
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Old 08-26-2012, 07:14 PM   #41
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Yup, I'm finally going to finish this TR... because I'm very hopefully about to start planning our next trip

Since we'd enjoyed it so much the day before, we decided to head back to Boma for breakfast on the morning of our last day. It did not disappoint.

After breakfast, we packed up our things and brought them down to the airline check-in/Magical Express area. Our flight wasn't until somewhere around 6pm, so we had plenty of time to go back to Epcot with just our backpack in tow.

I took this pic of my shadow while we waited for the bus


We had a lunch ADR at Coral Reef, and decided to try to get in early. It was no problem. We were seated right away. I'd never been to Coral Reef before, but DJ LOVES rainbow trout, and when I was doing my planning and saw it on the menu, I decided to go for it (despite some negative reviews of the restaurant I'd read/heard).

Light in the restaurant:


I loved the atmosphere. It wasn't loud at all -- but maybe that was because it was early.

The tank:


We were served nice warm bread, and both ordered the same salad as an appetizer (I believe it was the Mixed Field Greens salad).



Very good, and very fresh.

DJ's Rainbow Trout entree:


I don't eat seafood, so I ordered the seared chicken breast with mashed potatoes:

This was such a surprise! The chicken was juicy and flavorful with a crisp skin, the potatoes were buttery and creamy... just so delicious. I was shocked, as I wasn't expecting much from this restaurant.

I'm not sure what this first dessert is... maybe the Key Lime Mousse?


And for me, the Chocolate Wave. That was yummy!


Since all my notes are currently in storage (we are moving this coming weekend), I don't know how much this meal would've cost. Rough estimate is $80, and we used our last table service credit to cover it.

In my next post, we'll finish out the trip, munching our way through World Showcase once again!
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Old 11-16-2012, 04:13 PM   #42
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Booked our next trip this morning! My goal is now to finish this TR (whether anyone is reading it or not haha) before the next trip -- a mere 79 days away! Woohooooo!
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Old 11-16-2012, 09:12 PM   #43
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Love your review so far!! Joining in!
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Old 11-17-2012, 07:27 PM   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xkaittloveex View Post
Love your review so far!! Joining in!
Thanks! Hope you'll follow when I start my new PTR for our next trip
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Old 11-17-2012, 08:10 PM   #45
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Alright, let's wrap this baby up. It's been over a year since we got home, after all

After Coral Reef, we went to the Land pavilion. We were able to ride The Land, but Soarin' had a 70 minute wait, and the fastpass return time was between 5 and 6pm. This was disappointing, but not unexpected.

I hadn't ridden The Land since I was probably 13 years old, so it was much more interesting to me this time. I really enjoyed it.

We worked our way over to World Showcase, taking pictures along the way...





Note the Christmas tree


Once we arrived at WS, the munching commenced.

I believe this is the Ropa Vieja, but I'm not sure. I didn't taste it (Caribbean).


Another I didn't taste - Black Pepper Shrimp with Sichuan Noodles (China):


Cheese! Mmmmmmm!


So pretty!


Spicy Tuna Roll (Japan):


Since it's been so long, I don't remember all the details. I do remember getting a margarita in Mexico, and getting on line for the Gran fiesta Tour... but then they told me we couldn't have drinks in the line, so - didn't ride that!

We wandered around World Showcase for a while longer, but soon it was time to go I was afraid we'd miss our Magical Express time, so we hopped in a cab back to Kidani. It cost $18, but it was worth the peace of mind.

Before the bus came, I was able to run into the store and use up our remaining snack credits (a tub of Micky head-shaped "goldfish" and 2 Rice Crispy treats).

Here we are, heading back to the airport on the ME bus (a real one this time, not Mears!):

We look so sweaty haha -- it was pretty hot that day!

At the airport, I bought even more pins and some new antenna balls at the Disney store. A smooth flight, and we were back in ice-cold New Jersey in no time.

Next post - the wrap up!
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