My sister and I just returned from a fabulous weekend trek to the 2015 Epcot® International Food and Wine Festival. Not a bad way to spend a few kid-free days, right?! On Sunday we had the opportunity to attend a beverage seminar, a wine tasting in the Festival Center. This was our first Food and Wine Festival trip and we were excited to see what it was all about. I had booked our reservations back on July 30, the first day possible. Admittedly, my sister is much more of a wine connoisseur than I am, but both of us were pretty awed by the set-up in the Festival Center. This space housed not only the beverage seminars, but culinary demonstrations, alcohol-related merchandise and a wine tasting/retail area. The space for our tasting consisted of narrow tables and chairs, each with three glasses already filled with small amounts of the wines we were going to taste. A basket of crackers and paper for notes rounded out the space.
DIStracted Tip: Before lining up for your beverage seminar, be sure to pick up your tickets at the Information Booth in the Festival Center. We learned this the hard way (they don’t just scan MagicBands!) and had to jump out of line to grab our tickets. And don’t forget your ID. Disney will definitely verify if you are 21 years of age or older.
Our beverage seminar featured Tina from Purple Wine and Spirits based in Graton, California in Sonoma County. Tina was incredibly informative, which is probably why many attendees were return Guests from last year’s festival. Tina described each of the three wines we tasted, along with information about the company and their vineyard. We sampled their Raeburn Chardonnay, Calista Pinot Noir and the Avalon, a delicious Cabernet that was our personal favorite. As a really nice touch to end the presentation, Tina gave us a little quiz, testing our memory of some of the information imparted during the presentation. My sister answered the first question correctly and won a bottle of the Avalon Cabernet to take home. Several other tasters won bottle openers or wine, which I thought was an unexpected and fun way to end the event. While I am no expert, all of the wines were pretty tasty and we enjoyed being a part of such a well-run event.
DIStracted Tip: This beverage seminar lasted about 35 minutes and cost a very reasonable $15.00 per person. Disney Vacation Club members receive $2.00 off the price as well. The Epcot International Food and Wine Festival runs from September 25-November 16 this year. These seminars are understandably extremely popular, so advanced reservations are strongly recommended. Call 407-939-3378 or book on-line to join the fun!