In Full Bloom

Day two is upon us. Today we will be truckin’ on over to Epcot to experience the Flower and Garden Festival. This would be my second experience with this festival, but it has vastly changed since 2009. Now, it’s pretty much a mini Food and Wine Festival. Disney must have figured out that they don’t make extra money from the people just looking at the pretty flowers. Food and booze is where it’s at. I’m all on board.

Food and Flower and Garden and Wine Festival

All gussied up!

Figment is back!

All the Ladies!

We had fastpasses for the newest version of the Soarin’ attraction. No pictures to take here, but this was a favorite of the moms. This ride works for all ages hence, it’s always crazy busy. You must have a fastpass!

Next we had a leisurely boat cruise on Livin’ with the Land.

With a couple Future World attractions down we made our way to World Showcase to take in the floral vistas…and find some grub.

Mickey says it’s this way.

Peaceful path to the butterfly garden.

This tapestry of flowers is simply stunning.

This bright color scheme wound  throughout the festival.

A place for the kiddos.

Cabbages tucked in with the flowers.

On to the food. We started in Canada. Meghan got a sort of dessert/cocktail. It was yummy, but I needed some real food.

Maple Popcorn Shake with Crown Royal Maple Whiskey

But first, beer. This flight is from one of my favorite breweries, Unibroue.

The Beer Flight:Unibroue Maudite Amber Ale, Unibroue À Tout Le Monde Saison, Unibroue Éphémère White Ale

My first bite of the day was exceptional. The brown butter vinaigrette was bomb.

Seared Scallops with French Green Beans, Buttered Potatoes, Brown Butter Vinaigrette and Apple-wood Smoke Bacon

If you can’t say anything nice….

We strolled around the grounds of Victoria Gardens. This is always spectacular year round. These plantings are not just for the festival.

Victoria Gardens


I’m running out of adjectives already.

We were going to watch the Circle Vision movie while we were there. Some folks were murmuring about it being down so I hustled down to check it out.

The view along the way.

They had a young man stationed wayyyy down the end of a long bridge to tell us it was closed. Put that man up at the front, S’il vous plâit!

One last peek at Canada.

With a little Pixie Dust from Peter and Tink, we flew all the way to the U.K. !

Here we go!


Her Faery House.

The band was set up but nowhere to be found.

We were doing pretty well with crowds.

Would you like a spot of tea?

We found no offerings of food to our liking in the UK so we moved on to France.

Loved the signage on this Kiosk.

We had our  very favorite taste of the festival here, It was a savory delight! It was like thanksgiving wrapped in a flakey, buttery crust! We all agreed we would loop back around and get another taste, but sadly, it never happened.

Tarte à l’Onion Alsacienne Alsatian Onion Tart with Sautéed Onions, Fresh Thyme and Rosemary on a Flaky Puff Pastry Crust


I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. This is a creepy relationship.

Still working on this for my backyard. I’m at 0%  completion rate.

We took a stroll through me *favorite Pavilion, Morocco. No food here that we partook in.

A sweet escape is waiting for you in Morocco.


Empty tables in the shade. People, you need to seek out these treasures.

Keeping it artsy.

He thinks he’s better than me.

There is intricate tile work throughout.

Our next stop would be in the good ole US of A. We’d been to the American Adventure show here in the past few years, but I hadn’t heard the Voices of Liberty since our honeymoon, 28 years ago. I knew that the moms would love it!

The Voices of Liberty

This acoustically perfect rotunda allows the music to soar. Here’s a sample for your listening pleasure…

All smiles, and a couple of emotional tears.

After Voices, we saw the theater show (read: took a short nap) and headed back out for some victuals.

Hey howdy hey!

It smelled so fantastic out here.

Pulled Pig Slider with Coleslaw. Beef Brisket Burnt Ends Hash with White Cheddar Fondue and Pickled Jalapeños .

Yes, they are classifying that humungous pulled pork sandwich was billed as a slider! Both of these selections were excellent and a good value. Speaking of value, there are certain websites out there that are dedicated to all things Disney Food. While they post a lot of pretty pictures and such, some are so deep in with perks and exclusive invites from the mouse, that their reviews cannot be relied upon.  Josh from EasyWDW, however, has no such loyalties. Really, he’s as cynical as all get out. On our October trip and this latest one I followed his reviews for all our choices. He not only rates on taste, but value for what you get. Without exception, everything recommended was spot on. Thanks, Josh for eating and drinking all the things for us!

I wanted to.

Next up was Italy

Ciao Bella!

You may recall that I previously stated that I would never set foot in Tutto Gusto again. It is a cool and intimate respite from the bustle of the park but it is insanely over priced. However, when Meghan wants to go somewhere, you just do. I did think Arlene would love it. I sucked it up.

It does have its charms.

Some sort of Italian cocktail.

Ladies and gentleman, a TEN DOLLAR cannoli.

Yeah, it made me grumpy too.

With that business behind us, we made our way to Germany.

The Platz.

We did a walk through of The Karmel Kuche simply for the aromas.

Oh my goodness.

Just heavenly.

I felt well guarded.

Germany is always great for a Beer and a Bratwurst, tasty and reasonably priced. For the festival, there were some other tempting options.

Currywurst with Paprika Chips – Roasted Bratwurst with Curry Ketchup and Paprika-spiced Chips

Potato Pancakes with House-made Apple Sauce

The Currywurst and chips were pretty straightforward and awesome. I just wished they put the ketchup to the side so I could regulate the ratio. Just nitpicking here. The potato pancake paired with  applesauce was a surprisingly savory delight. The herb laced pancake paired a low sugar apple sauce made for a perfect  coupling of savory and sweet.

A dunkel, I believe.

I failed to notice the violent thunderstorm headed our way. I see it now.

No trip to World Showcase is considered valid without the consumption of a School Bread from Norway. It’s in the charter.

Norway’s Stave Church.

Meghan ran inside to purchase our pastry when all heck-fire rain broke loose. She was stuck undercover, but we had to find refuge in a bathroom doorway. We made fast friends with all the other folks seeking shelter.

Meghan did a superb job protecting the goods.

The rain left as quickly as it rolled in so we were good to move on to Mexico.

Gorgeous orchid displays.

Keeping it gallery quality on the pics.

We just did a quick loop around. The tequila bar was too packed after the rain to be considered and the Three Caballeros ride seemed a bit tough to board.

We did get to see Mexican Donald. Olé!

Three Caballeros in floral form.

More fantastic topiaries and the from of Worldshowcase.

I need these guys to work in my garden.

Sunset was looking brilliant at this point.

We decided to loop back around to the UK to have a pint and regroup.


We discussed our strategy for the rest of the evening, specifically watching Illuminations. We were getting a bit weary, so I decided to try and snag a reservation with good viewing. I was able to get us in to La Hacienda, however they stuck us in a windowless section of the restaurant. Boo! We ordered our food and drinks, then when the show was about to begin I made the girls hustle out to see the show. It worked out okay I guess. It was pretty remarkable how hungry we were after grazing all day, but here we are!

Taquiza – taco sampler featuring grilled chicken with green tomatillo sauce, grilled steak with roasted chipotle sauce and rajas poblanas, pork chilorio served with queso fresco, and a battered fish served with a mayo-chipotle sauce topped with cabbage

Queso Fundido – melted cheese with chorizo, poblano and serrano peppers, avocado-tomatillo sauce, and flour tortillas

Pork Empanadas (no pic of those. Just the beans. dang it)- corn dough empanadas stuffed with pork, and black beans; topped with mole sauce

I had hoped to do a late night stroll but we were all plum tuckered out and the ladies already got a full Epcot experience. You can’t for better than that.

G’night, muchachos.

Another successful outing. Thanks, Epcot!

*They’re all my favorite.

Up Next: This uber planner throws the itinerary away. Yikes!


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