It’s my most favorite time of the year! Yep, that’s right. It’s Epcot Food and Wine Festival holiday season. I take it as my honor to give you 15 powerful tips to 10X your trip!
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Listen to the full podcast episode below!
15 Epcot Food and Wine Festival Tips
The Epcot Food and Wine Festival will feature more than 30 global marketplaces with dates from August 30th through November 12th. You can read the complete guide to Epcot International Food and Wine Festival here!
1 – Get to Epcot Food and Wine Festival Early
Coming early to the Epcot Food and Wine Festival will give you a chance to pace yourself. You will be able to enjoy not only the amazing food that’s being offered, but you’ll also get to experience the attractions in both Future World and World Showcase.
2 – Map Out Your Day
This is another classic tip for any avid Disney traveler. Mapping out your day will save you the headache of missing out on any of your must do items, especially if you’re only able to visit once.
This tip is very important, because it will help guide you on:
- Where to find each marketplace
- What time seminars/events will occur
- Any information regarding speakers, performers, and other special Disney guests
3 – Get a Festival Passport
Festival Passports are free and available all over Epcot. The passport is a booklet that allows you to personalize it with your name, country, date issued, and date of completion.
It also includes the locations of marketplaces, a detailed list of the dishes, merchandising options, and concert information. Stickers are also included for you to mark off which food booth you’ve visited.
4 – Start in the Festival Center
Starting here is a must!
It opens two hours before World Showcase and it is a good way to enjoy a few seminars and chat with the Cast Members, possibly gaining some insider tips.
Inside the Festival Center you find passports to start your world adventure, the wine shop, Intermissions Café, The Chocolate Experience, Remy’s Ratatouille Hide & Squeak, Bottles and Book Signings, a wine making film, and seminar stages.
5 – Go During the Weekdays
For the best time I recommend attending the festival during the weekdays (Monday through Thursday). These days tend to be the least crowded days at Epcot. This will help you be able to make the most of your time at the festival.
6 – Plan to Visit Multiple Times
The Epcot International Food and Wine festival is like no other festival out there. That’s why I recommend visiting on multiple occasions throughout the season.
You will need a trip to try it all, a trip for seminars, and a trip to retry your favorites.
7 – Attend the Food and Wine Festival Seminars
There’s no better way to enjoy the event than attending the amazing variety of classes. The prices range from a luxurious all-encompassing experience to budget friendly 45-minute presentation. A plus is that you will get to meet many of your favorite chefs and try the dishes and drinks in your class.
The sessions are done very well and are lots of fun!
8 – Put Money on a Disney Wristlet Gift Card
Tasting the many samples without a set budget could turn a fun trip into one of financial regret…trust me, I’ve made this mistake a few times. Be sure to put “get a Disney wristlet gift card” at the top of your priority list.
9 – Budget for Your Day
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🚨Tomorrow is the last day for Epcot Food and Wine Festival 🍷 ✨ Here are a few of my favorites from this year’s amazing festival! ✨ Beijing Roasted Duck Bao Bun with Hoisin Sauce ✨ The Steakhouse Blended Burger: Blended Beef and Wild Mushroom Slider with Brie Cheese Fondue, Arugula, Truffle and Blue Cheese Potato Chip on a Brioche Bun ✨ Charred Chimichurri Skirt Steak on a Smoked Corn Cake with Pickled Vegetable Slaw and Cilantro Aïoli ✨ Lump Crab Cake with Napa Cabbage Slaw and Avocado-lemongrass Cream ✨ Sweet Dark Chocolate Raspberry Tart with Whipped Cream ✨ Loaded Mac ‘n’ Cheese with Nueske’s® Pepper Bacon, Cheddar Cheese, Peppers and Green Onions (KA) ✨ Loaded Nachos with Beef Brisket ✨ What was your FAVORITE DISH this year??? ✨ #epcotfoodandwine #disneyfoodie #epcot #epcotfood #disneysolo #solodisneytrip #disneytip #disneyfood #disneyfoodporn #epcotfoodfestival
Believe it or not, $3 here or $5 there adds up quickly. I recommend budgeting $35-$45 for each person in your party.
And that’s just a budget for food!
Beer and wine samples are poured at about 3 ounces for wine and 6 ounces for beer or cocktails. On average, adult beverage samples usually cost between $3-$9 with cocktails around $9.50.
10 – Split the Cost
Going with a friend or two or three lowers your budget and makes the event memorable. You can share multiple dishes without leaving Epcot broke.
[alert alert_heading=”Hipster Power Tip: ” alert_text=”Share a beer or wine flight with a friend. Each flight contains 3 to 4 samples.” alert_style=”alert-warning”/]
11 – Share Your Table with Others
It’s Epcot and it’s your home, so why not make new friends by sharing your table. On busy festival days, finding a table can be hard. If your group is small and you have an extra spot, why not invite someone over who you see searching the area for a place to enjoy their fabulous dish.
12 – Plan for A Cab or Have A Designated Driver in The Group
Previewing the festival’s menu gives you an idea of what delicious treats can be expected. There are lots of drinks (mostly adult inspired) that will hopefully leave you balanced and able to walk out.
Be sure to have a plan for this kind of indulgence, it makes for a safe and fun experience at Epcot.
[alert alert_heading=”Hipster Power Tip: ” alert_text=”Stay hydrated by drinking lots of water and taking frequent breaks.” alert_style=”alert-warning”/]
13 – Book Your Reservations Early
Reservations are your friend!
Most Epcot Food and Wine Festival fans know that the small spots for the great classes fill up fast; therefore, it is highly recommended to reserve the seminar or special event you’re the most excited to attend right away.
Reservations can be made by calling 407/WDW-FEST (407-939-3378) or online. Remember to book quickly to guarantee a spot.
14 – Try New Things
It’s easy to stick with the things most familiar to you, but that’s not what Epcot Food and Wine Festival is all about!
Since the portions are smaller, it’s a great way to try something at least once…or twice as Andrew Zimmern states.
It is at the festival that I learned the art of eating escargot. Maybe due to the dish being smothered in butter and garlic!
Epcot chefs definitely understand how to ease guests, like you and me, into exploring new cultural cuisines.
15 – Have Fun!
You’re really going to have a great time, so try not to stress too much if you find yourself spending too much time at the marketplaces or in the seminars. There’s always something going on in the park that will allow you to have the best time ever!
Have fun, learn something, eat well, and drink up!
You’re now loaded with all of the tips to doing the Epcot Food and Wine Festival like a pro. What tip do you think is the most helpful for making the most of your time at the festival?
Leave your comment below!
Want more theme park tips? Check out the theme park tips page. If you’re thinking about going to a theme park alone, then read the top 18 tips. Are you planning a Disney vacation soon? Read the Disney Vacation Planning Guide for your next dream trip!
Read more Walt Disney World and Epcot Food & Wine Festival Tips
- Epcot for Adults the Complete Guide
- Read the full Epcot International Food and Wine Festival Guide
- Epcot Food and Wine Festival MENU
- Food and Wine Eat to the Beat Concert Schedule
- Epcot Food and Wine Culinary Demonstration Schedule
- Ways to Enjoy Epcot International Flower and Garden Festival
- Tips for Doing Walt Disney World on a Budget
Don’t forget to discover the new magical and mysterious Disney adventure of Pandora – The World of Avatar at Animal Kingdom® Theme Park.
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Until next time, Happy Park Hopping Hipsters!