Thursday, October 2, 2014

Food and Wine Fest 2014: (Abbreviated) Round Two and a Bonus Side Trip!

Round two went a little something like this:

As it was our "celebration weekend," T came along with me. We went up a little earlier than they open up World Showcase for Food and Wine Fest, took in some attractions, and then headed over to Norway, for one last ride on Maelstrom before it is shut down for its Frozen re-theming. (Sigh.)

One final farewell to the trolls who commanded us "Back! Over the falls!"

And the one that glares at us before we zoom down the hill.

Thank you for sharing "the spirit of Norvay" with us, Maelstrom.

And then we played "dodge the storm clouds," while we attempted to Fest a bit.


Vegetarian Haggis with Neeps and Tatties.

I really enjoy the vegetarian haggis, which is essentially a little griddled cake of stuffing. There is a ton of flavor, and of course it pairs well with the tatties (mashed potatoes). I remember liking last year's neeps (mashed rutabaga, probably better known to you as turnips) better. This year, they were a little lumpy. I'm not sure if they simply needed a bit more mashing or if this batch was just slightly undercooked, but the texture wasn't as appealing to me. I didn't leave any in my little dish, though, in case you were wondering.

Next up...


Kalua Pork Slider with Sweet and Sour Pineapple Chutney and Spicy Mayonnaise. Maui Splash Pineapple Wine.

This pork slider is something I have looked forward to each year they've brought it back, and this year was no disappointment. The pork was juicy (to the point of requiring multiple napkins!), and the combination of chutney and spicy mayo was the perfect contrast of sweet and spicy. There are layers upon layers of flavor and I savor every last mouthful. I was very pleasantly surprised by the pineapple wine! There was a distinct pineapple flavor and it was rather sweet (which is not a turnoff for me, when it comes to wine), but it was still definitely a wine -- no mistaking it for a glass of pineapple juice! I find it difficult to assign the proper words it do it justice, but much like the Key Limen wine I've had at past Food and Wine Fests, this is unique in its taste and delivers exactly what it promises: in this case, pineapple.

The clouds began to gather and look ominous, so we camped out inside the America pavilion and listened to the choral show, The Voices of Liberty. It never rained, but it was nice to sit in some cool air for a bit, before heading to...


Lobster and Seafood Fisherman's Pie.

This is a staple of the Fest. It's amazing (assuming you like seafood), with its chunks of seafood -- just look at that enormous piece if lobster I found in mine! and that was not the only one! -- and savory vegetables, swimming in lobster bisque, with a layer of mashed potatoes baked over the top. It's rich and hearty and just very, very satisfying.

So satisfying, in fact, that with more storm clouds and crowds building, we decided we were full, and went off to check into our hotel: Port Orleans French Quarter.

(Full disclosure: the skies are blue because I took this on our way out the following morning.)

We got all settled in our room...

...and then went out to explore a bit. The grounds were very peaceful. And colorful. And very "New Orleans." Our room was "Garden View" and looked out over this little park-like green with a fire pit.

By the time we had wandered all over the property, we thought that maybe we were a little hungry for a light dinner. We checked out the counter service restaurant, but nothing really called out to us.

Maybe we were subconsciously a little too unnerved by the idea of eating under these watchful eyes?

So we decided to walk along the river to the sister resort, Port Orleans Riverside, to see what we might see. It was a nice little walk under shady trees. When we emerged from underneath the bridge, we discovered that Riverside's theme is "southern plantation." So lovely!

We perused some menus and decided to eat at the Riverside Mill Food Court...

...complete with working water wheel!

I wish I could say I have a photo of our dinner, but I do not. I still have to talk about it though. We opted for some fish and chips. We were expected the heavily battered, somewhat greasy fish, like you find inside the parks. What we got blew out minds. Three pieces of fish each, probably 2.5x7" in size, in this light, crunchy, slightly spicy breading (very southern fish-fry style, appropriately!), barely greasy at all. It was so much food, I could only eat two pieces of fish and maybe a half dozen fries. T managed to squeeze in his three pieces, plus the one I couldn't eat, but didn't even touch his fries. It was so tasty, but if we'd known how generous the serving was, we would have gotten just one basket and split it! Not counting our drinks, we could have fed two adults for less than $10 -- don't believe everything people say about how nothing at WDW is reasonably priced.

Anyway, stuffed to the gills (har har...gills, fish...never mind), we decided to ride the ferry back to our side of the bridge, where we discovered that the fire pit beneath our balcony was being put to good use! A fire was lit and they were handing out marshmallows -- as many as you wanted! -- to roast over it. I found a tiny empty corner in my tummy for one.

And then it was time to shower and collapse in our room with matching food comas.

1 with their own thoughts:

*krystyn* Thursday, October 09, 2014 3:01:00 PM  

Bad timing for I'm hungry!!!

And the Port Orleans is where I stayed when I ran my 1st WDW Princes 1/2. Ahhh - the memories. LOL!! Great place!!

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