Epcot odds & ends…

February 13, 2011

Recently I had the chance to spend some time wandering solo around Epcot, mostly in the World Showcase (which I’m sure is a big shock to all five or so of my Dedicated Readers…), and thought I’d share a few random items from that day…

Arriving mid-morning, I was feeling a bit peckish so I headed to The Land pavilion to grab a bit of a bite. Sunshine Seasons is located there and is arguably the best counter service eatery in all of DisneyWorld – it certainly has the best variety of any quick service at lunch and dinner and many dishes are better than what you can find at some sit-down locations. They also have refrigerated sections with pre-packaged sushi, sides, salads & wraps. Most importantly, it’s also here where you can find a beer at 9 AM if you so require…

I opted for something different (and probably healthy) on this day, a Taboulle wrap (or “pin wheel”). It was actually quite tasty and was just right for a light meal. I added a bit of hot sauce and lemon juice to a few of the bites and found they complimented the flavor of the bulgar-based salad.

Yes, I’d gladly eat this again… probably with a beer…

Next I made my way to my personal Happy Place, the World Showcase…

On a recent visit I’d noticed a new item had been added to the menu at the outside margarita stand in Mexico, so I made my way there to sample the Midnight Blue Margarita.

Somewhat perplexingly, there are two signs at the booth, one of which notes the drink is rimmed with hibiscus salt…

while the second states the glass is adorned with cinnamon/saffron salt (yummm!).

Thoroughly confused, I asked the castmembers on duty which salt of the two actually came with the drink – I was told neither, just regular salt… okayyy…

Now throughly disappointed that I was going to have to choke it down without some sort of fancy sodium, I handed over the exorbitant sum of $12.50 (plus sales tax) and received a glass filled with a frozen blue concoction…

It was pretty, and on a sultry day (which this wasn’t), it would have been a fun beverage to share with a loved one (or at least someone you like enough to share a drink with) while wandering around the World until you get to the next adult beverage station… was it better than the other flavors to warrant the price difference? For my taste, not really, but then again taste is certainly a subjective thing, and I’m not really a frozen-Margarita-kinda-guy anyway… for the price I’d prefer one of the specialty drinks at La Cava just a few steps away, but if frozen libations are your thing, or if it’s an exceptionally toasty day outside, I’d say give it a try!

Making my way around to Italy, I noticed a worker doing touch-up work outside one of the shops – I was there just after the World Showcase opened, and she had obviously been working before that part of the park opened – she was touching her paint job to see if it was sufficiently dry, and scurried away off-stage before I was able to click a pic of her at work.

"Plain" column

She was re-painting the faux marble columns outside the shops in Italy – one was still in “primer-mode” waiting to have the marble veining added.

Freshly detailed column

I wandered back towards Via Napoli and yes, as others have already noted, the quick service kiosk that had been set up outside during the busy holiday season was indeed gone. It will be interesting to see if it returns, even if only during more crowded times of the year… but it would be nice to have another take-out option in this section of the World Showcase.

Yet more interesting here were some changes to the menu at Via Napoli: there is now an option to “build-your-own” pizza with several toppings, and even though the restaurant has only been open since October, prices have already increased (and many people thought the prices here were high to begin with…).

In Germany I came upon a (sadly) empty area:

Barren of beer...

The location of the Brewers’s Collection during the Food and Wine Festival (and open afterwards as the Holiday Brewers’s Collection) was now back to being, well, nothing…

The same area in happier days...

To counter my sadness I made my way to my favorite little village on the Romantic Road…

While here I came across a castmember performing the tedious duty of keeping the grass-free areas grass-free…

Usually you only see someone on their knees here after too much drinking around the world...

there had been a big storm the night before, so I’m not sure if this was post-storm clean-up or just routine work, but considering he was working while the park was open, I’m guessing the former.

Next came a stop at my favorite quick service around the lagoon, the Yakitori House in Japan (and why do they never actually have yakitori there?).

Soba Noodles with Japanese Curry Sauce

After a tasty lunch to fortify me on my trek towards the exit, I was lucky enough to catch Miyuki practicing her art.

One of the most-overlooked experiences in all of the parks is watching this tiny, talented woman turn a ball of candy into a work of art.

Reputed to be the only female practitioner of this art form in the world (the whole world, not just DisneyWorld), her demonstrations are a must-see as far as I’m concerned.

So next time you’re in Epcot be sure to check the times guide and see if Miyuki is there that day, and if so, look for her cart just outside the Mitsukoshi Department Store – you’ll be amazed!

And while it’s not nearly as much fun as seeing her in person, if you can’t wait search YouTube for “Miyuki candy artist” and you’ll find many videos.

Well, now time to leave the park and back to the real world… and the kitchen… see you soon!

2 Responses to “Epcot odds & ends…”

  1. Rose Says:

    In Nov I tried the blue margarita. Not impressed. My friend got the regular lime (for alot less $$) and it was so much better. But……..I did get some kind of special sugar. I can’t remember which kind tho but it was not plain salt.


  2. Sarah Says:

    There’s been another menu change at the Margarita stand since your visit. This pic is from 2/13/11L http://yfrog.com/h36x4kfj As you can see, the reference to any special salt has been removed, there is a Patron Lime Margarita served on the rocks, no more Tequila Coffee… When will this stand make up its mind?!

    The first time I got the blue margarita last spring/summer, it came with a cactus/lemongrass salt. The next time I ordered it, just plain ol’ salt. Yeah, not for $12.50, buckaroos. I stick with the strawberry now.


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