Posts Tagged by raglan road

Friday Feast: Culinary Demonstrations at Epcot’s Food & Wine Festival

Reservations for the 2013 Epcot Food and Wine Festival Culinary Demonstrations opened this week and I can’t decide what to go to!!!!   Last year I attended two demonstrations and had an amazing time.  The first demo I attended was with Iron Chef Cat Cora of Kouzzina at Disney’s Boardwalk Resort (best breakfast on property!) and then Chef Kevin Dundon of Raglan Road, one of my fav restaurants!

Iron Chef Cat Cora

Iron Chef Cat Cora

Chef Kevin Dundon

Chef Kevin Dundon

I will be in the World twice this year during the Food & Wine Festival and I’m hoping I will have time to attend at least one demonstrations.  So here are the options for the Twilight Zone Tower of Terror 10-Miler Weekend:

Thursday, October 03, 2013
1:00 PM Bruno Vrignon, Monsieur Paul, France Pavilion, Epcot®, WDW Snails
3:00 PM Bob Getchell, T Rex Café, Downtown Disney® Area, WDW Pork
5:00 PM Kevin Fonzo, K Restaurant, Orlando, FL Shrimp
Friday, October 04, 2013
1:00 PM Ruth Van Waerebeek, Concha y Toro, Santiago, Chile Scallops
3:00 PM Noah French, HoneyCrisp, Denver, CO Pastry
5:00 PM Rock Harper, FatShorty’s, Arlington, VA Mussels- contains Pork
Saturday, October 05, 2013
1:00 PM Kenneth Gilbert, Cook Like the Big Dogs LLC, Jacksonville, FL Seafood
3:00 PM Jerome Brown “Chef Rome”, Hot Grits LLC, Knightdale, NC Bison
5:00 PM Alisa Malavenda, POSH salt, Cliffside Park, NJ Scallop
Sunday, October 06, 2013
1:00 PM Noah French, HoneyCrisp, Denver, CO Pastry
3:00 PM Tim Hockett, Nacional 27, Chicago, IL Beef
5:00 PM Alisa Malavenda, POSH salt, Cliffside Park, NJ Shellfish
Monday, October 07, 2013
1:00 PM Jason Stefanko, Gardein, Richmond, Canada Vegan
3:00 PM Dr. Wendy Bazilian, RD & Pam Smith, RD and Author of The Energy Edge Pastry
presented by Driscoll’s® Only the Finest Berries™
5:00 PM Joe Bonanno and Damon Lauder, Park Event Operations, Epcot®, WDW Duck

I think my top pick out of this group is the demo with Alisa Malavenda.  As a Jersey girl and a shellfish fan, this might be the perfect way to celebrate finishing the race!

And then at the tail end of the festival, I will be down for the Disney Wine & Dine Half Marathon (my favorite!) and here are the demos for that weekend:

Thursday, November 07, 2013
1:00 PM Bill Clark, Grand Floridian Bakery, Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, WDW Pastry
presented by Ocean Spray® Craisins® Brand Dried Cranberries
3:00 PM Thomas Massey, Sunshine Seasons, Epcot®, WDW Mahi Mahi
5:00 PM Mike Dillard, Disney’s BoardWalk Inn, WDW Rabbit
Friday, November 08, 2013
1:00 PM Ingrid Hoffmann Presented by Coca-Cola® Savory
3:00 PM John Hardman, Tony’s Town Square Restaurant, Magic Kingdom® Park, WDW Chicken
5:00 PM Phillip Ponticelli, Cítricos, Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, WDW Shrimp
Saturday, November 09, 2013
1:00 PM Ben Sargent, Author, The Catch: Sea-to-Table, Stories and Secrets, New York, NY Lobster
3:00 PM TJ Sudiswa, Grand Floridian Café, Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, WDW Turkey presented by Ocean Spray® Craisins® Brand Dried Cranberries
5:00 PM Pam Smith, RD, Author of The Energy Edge Savory
presented by Driscoll’s® Only the Finest Berries™
Sunday, November 10, 2013
1:00 PM Michael Klinger, Pioneer Hall, Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort & Campground, WDW Oysters-Contains Pork
3:00 PM Javier Pareja, Disney’s Yacht Club Resort, WDW Vegetarian
5:00 PM Michael Gonsalves, Golden Oak Club, WDW Sausage-Contains Pork
presented by Ocean Spray® Craisins® Brand Dried Cranberries
Monday, November 11, 2013
1:00 PM Geraldine Randlesome, Creative Cutters, Ontario, Canada Pastry
3:00 PM Dylan Schauwecker, The Wave… of American Flavors, Crab & Shrimp
Disney’s Contemporary Resort, WDW
5:00 PM Michael Gonsalves, Golden Oak Club, WDW Sausage-Contains Pork
presented by Ocean Spray® Craisins® Brand Dried Cranberries

Ooohh doesn’t that Ben Sargent demo look good?!  The Catch: Sea-to-Table, Stories and Secrets with NY Lobster…yes please!  That sounds like a good pre-race meal right??

These demos are a great bargain at $14 a piece.  You get a fun demonstration PLUS a tasting of what they are cooking!  Win-win in my book.  You can find all of the demonstrations listed on the Disney Food Blog.

What are demonstrations are you looking forward to at the 2013 Epcot International Food & Wine Festival?? 

Friday Feast: Epcot Food & Wine Festival Culinary Demonstrations

I recently attended two amazing culinary demonstrations at the Epcot Food & Wine Festival.  This is my 4th year attending the festival and these demonstrations were something I had yet to do, so I made it a priority this year.  Given my love of cooking and how I’m always interested in trying new food, I knew these would be right up my alley.  The culinary demonstrations are relatively inexpensive ranging from $9 – 14 depending on the chef.  DVC Members and Annual Passholders are eligible for a $2 discount, so make sure to utilize that when booking.

I was lucky to be in Walt Disney World when two great chefs had demonstrations back to back, Cat Cora of Kouzzina and Iron Chef fame and Kevin Dundon from one of my favorite restaurants on property, Raglan Road.  Cat Cora was the first for the day and she drew a HUGE crowd.  Not only was the demonstrations area full, but there were a lot of people watching from the preview center.

Iron Chef Cat Cora and Kouzzina Chef Dee Foundoukis

We were seated and immediately given a glass of wine.  Wine?!  Score!  I didn’t know these demonstrations came with a wine pairing.  My $12 investment was now well worth the price.  There was also a menu listing what we would be eating that included a recipe so we could replicate it at home.  From the menu, I found that the wine was a Bloomfield Viognier from Bloomfield Vineyards, which was a nice crisp white.

There was a change to the menu that day and the feta mashed potatoes were being substituted with orzo.  The chefs walked us through the steps of making the dish and shared some techniques on how to prepared the items.  There was a camera set above the cooking station that was being shown on televisions around the room, so we could see just what they were doing….a really nice touch!  This was also when the audience got to ask questions and I was pleasantly surprised to see how fun and down to earth Cat Cora was.  She had a great time conversing with the audience.

Then the carts appeared!  We were about to taste these yummy smelling meatballs.  I’m not a huge fan of lamb, but these were DELICIOUS!!  They were much lighter than regular meatballs and the sauce had a little spice to it to add some additional flavor.  I’m glad that this was served with the orzo because I think that the feta mashed potatoes would’ve been too heavy.

This was a fun and entertaining demonstration and the food was a hit too!  Cat Cora is at the Food & Wine Festival every year and I would highly recommend checking this one out next year if you are in town during that time.

Later that afternoon, we saw Chef Kevin Dundon from Raglan Road in Downtown Disney.  I love this restaurant and it’s upscale pub fare, so I was most looking forward to this demonstration.  Chef Dundon did not disappoint!  He was incredibly funny and lively.  You can see that he is really passionate about cooking and also enjoyed talking with the audience.

On the menu was an updated version of the classic French dish, Coquilles St. Jacques, which is scallops in a heavy cream sauce with mashed potatoes.  Delicious, but rich!  Chef Dundon instead seared the scallops and made a lighter cream sauce infused with apples (YUM!!) and served this over mashed potatoes.  It was to die for…I really would’ve like 4 more of these little plates.

This dish was served with a nice, full bodied Chardonnay that brought out the apple flavor in the sauce.

A surprise bonus of this demonstration was dessert!  In sticking with the classic theme, Chef Dundon prepared Cherries Jubilee   This is always a show stopper because of the flambe aspect in the preparation   We were all instructed to oooh  and ahhh on cue.  This was a very good dessert, but the sauce was a little too sweet for me.

Overall, both of these demonstrations were well worth the nominal fee.  You get about 45 minutes of culinary entertainment, wine, a food tasting and maybe even dessert!  Not bad for $12, but remember that park admission is required.  I’m already looking forward to next year and who I will be able to see!!

Have you attended any of the culinary demonstrations at the Epcot Food & Wine Festival? 

Friday Feast on Saturday: Raglan Road

Today is a special edition of the Friday Feast on Saturday!  Ok I’m lying…I couldn’t get it together to post this yesterday, so it’s going up today.  Special edition sounds so much more fun!

I’ve been talking about healthy foods at the Epcot Food & Wine Festival in the Friday Feast for the past 2 weeks and recapping the Healthy Living Summit all this week…notice the healthy theme.  Well for all of you that like to indulge in the “not so healthy” options every now and then, you’re in luck because we’re switching gears today and visiting Raglan Road to try some of their heartier dishes.

Located in the (now defunct) Pleasure Island section of Downtown Disney, Raglan Road is one of my favorite restaurant in all of Walt Disney World.  This restaurant holds a special place in my heart because it was the first full service restaurant B and I ate at on his first trip to the World in 2007.  This past May we returned here for a quick lunch on the last of our trip before heading to the airport, and let’s just say we ordered some less than healthy options.

I first want to show you some of the amazing decor.  The entire restaurant was built in Ireland and shipped in pieces to Downtown Disney.  The dark wood and stained glass detailing are absolutely stunning.  It is incredibly warm and inviting making this Irish girl feel right at home.  In the evenings, there is live Irish music and dance performances.  It is very high energy and a lot of fun!  Fair warning it can be loud, so if you’re looking for a nice quiet spot for dinner, this might not be it.  This is why lunch is a good option, you get all the atmosphere in a more peaceful setting.

Gorgeous Stained Glass

A Small Part of the GIANT Bar

Raglan Road Interior

Music Stage

The lunch menu is a nice variety of lighter salads and sandwiches, plus the traditional hearty Irish fare like Shepard’s Pie, Fish & Chips, and Bangers & Mash.

Who’s that handsome guy in the background?? 🙂
Click here to view the full menu

I started with a Half and Half, which is half Harp and half Guinness.  This is one of my favorite beers because you get the bitterness from the Guinness followed by the refreshing Harp.  Delish!  I opted for the soup of the day for my appetizer, which was wild mushroom.  I seriously could have eaten a whole bucket of this.  It was rich, creamy and oh so good.  It was topped with some fried onions and had a puff pastry stick on the side for dipping.

Half and Half

Wild Mushroom Soup
This photo does not do it justice

For our main dishes, B went for the Beefy Briskey sandwich, minus the horseradish cream.  He substituted Irish cheddar instead.  This was a monster of a sandwich and it lived up to it’s beefy name.  The brisket was actually quite moist and the tangy cheddar was a nice addition.  It also came with a giant pail of fries and a tiny little salad.

Beefy Brisket Sandwich

I went for one of my favorite all time dishes, Fish & Chips.  I always enjoy the Fish & Chips over at Rose & Crown in Epcot, but I must say that this blows it out of the water.  The batter was light and crispy…perfect to be soaked in lemon and malt vinegar!  I also really like their chips very crunchy.

Fish & Chips

I was stuffed, but B wanted to try dessert.  He went with the Bailey’s Creme Brûlée Tart…I mean, how can you go wrong with that?!?  I of course had a bite.  The Bailey’s flavor was nice, but overall it was entirely too sweet for me.  However, I’m not much of a dessert person, but I might not be the best judge here.

Bailey’s Creme Brûlée Tart

Raglan Road seems to be a place that we gravitate towards for a nice quiet lunch, usually on the last day of our trip.  The food is always good and the friendly atmosphere makes you feel right at home.  I’d highly recommend it next time you are in the World.

In October, I’m very excited to have booked a culinary demonstration with Raglan Road’s Chef Kevin Dundon during the Epcot Food & Wine Festival.  Stay tuned for a full review of that coming up!

Have you been to Raglan Road?

Friday Feast: Healthy Options at the Epcot Food & Wine Festival Markteplace Booths (Part 1)

We are just 49 days away from this year’s Epcot Food & Wine Festival…the most WONDERFUL time of the year!  Today, pre-booking opened for Annual Passholders, Tables in Wonderland, and Disney Vacation Club members.  I was up bright and early to book culinary seminars with Cat Cora from Kouzzina and Kevin Dundon from Raglan Road.  I’ve never been to a seminar during Food & Wine and I’m excited to see these amazing chefs in action.  Booking opens for everyone on August 14th at 7:00 am, so mark your calendars!

While the special events look amazing, we’ll save that for another day.  Today I want to look at the Food & Wine Festival Marketplace Booths.  This year there are 29 booths to choose from….like there weren’t an overwhelming number of choices before!  I was recently going through various menus and noticed that there aren’t many healthy options available.  Now I know there aren’t any calories in WDW 😉 and Food & Wine is a time to splurge, but I have searched out some of the healthier items so I don’t need to be rolled out of Epcot after my culinary journey around the World.  Yes, I will still be having my beloved Coq au Vin from France, the Kielbasa & Potato Pierogies from Poland, and the oh so decadent Chocolate Lava Cake with Bailey’s Ganache from Ireland on my trip, but I have also found some of these less gut busting options to help keep me on track.

Let’s go clockwise around the World Showcase and start at the new Terra booth.  As a former vegetarian, I actually enjoy “fake meat ” and I’m looking forward to this booth.  The Trick’n Chick’n Curry with Basmati Rice not only sounds good, but it looks good from the preview photos.  I’m glad Disney has stepped up and is offering more vegetarian and vegan options at the Food & Wine Festival.  This is something that has definitely been lacking in the past with the majority of vegetarian options being desserts.

You’re actually going to find many of the healthier options right in this beginning area, the next being the Caribbean.  This booth was only introduced last year and the Jerk Spiced Chicken Drumstick with Mango Chutney received many positive reviews.  The chicken is simply grilled and has a nice kick to it.  This is a great carb and gluten free option.

Moving across the pathway, we come to Australia.  This was one of my favorite booths last year.  They are bringing back the simply grilled Shrimp on the Barbie with Pepper Berry Citrus Glaze, which is just delicious!  The Grilled Lamb Chop is back, but this year instead of the Potato-Goat Cheese Salad, it is paired with a Mint Pesto and Potato Crunchies.  The pesto is going to be like a kicked up version of mint jelly which is a traditional accompaniment with lamb, so that will be a nice addition.  I’m not thrilled about the potato crunchies and I’m hoping we can order this without them.

Shrimp on the Barbie with Pepper Berry Citrus Glaze from 2011

To finish out this little cluster of healthier options, there is Argentina.  Here they have a wonderful Grilled Beef Skewer with Chimichurri Sauce and Boniato Puree.  Are you sensing a grilled theme here??  Sometimes beef skewers can be tough and chewy, but this is nice and tender.  I really like chimichurri, but they give you a lot and it can be overly oily so use that sparingly.  If you’re wondering what Boniato is (I had to look it up last year), it’s a sweet potato found in South America.  It’s very starchy and a nice accompaniment to the beef.

Grilled Beef Skewer with Chimichurri Sauce and Boniato Puree from 2011
Try to look past the blurry photo

Now we come to the Asian portion of our journey starting with China.  This year the Barbecue Chicken Stick (which didn’t sound all too appealing) will change to a Chicken Satay with Spicy Peanut Sauce and Pickled Vegetables…YUM!  I love a good peanut sauce so this is definitely on my must try list.

Across the way is my all time favorite booth at the Food & Wine Festival, South Korea.  The Lettuce Wrap with Roast Port and Kimchi Slawis to die for!  It is incredibly flavorful and actually pretty good for you.  The nice crisp lettuce takes the place of a heavy bun and the pork is just simply roasted with no heavy sauces.  I’m sure I will have at least 3 of these.

Lettuce Wrap with Roast Pork and Kimchi Slaw from 2011

Next to the China pavilion is the African Outpost where you will find the South Africa booth.  The Seared Filet of Beef with Smashed Sweet Potatoes and Braai Sauce is always a big hit among festival patrons.  The sauce is a tomato based sauce that has a bit of spice to it, but plays nicely off of the sweet potatoes.  This booth also has a wonderful Pinotage that goes wonderfully with the filet. This brings us to about halfway around World Showcase, which is a good point to take a breather from all of this amazing food.  Next week in the Friday Feast, we’ll tackle the 2nd half of the Food & Wine Festival and even more healthy options!

Great news, the Disney Food Blog has released the “DFB Mini-Guide to the 2012 Epcot Food & Wine Festival“!!  This e-book is far from mini with 160 pages full of Food & Wine Festival goodness.  The guide has a full, daily schedule of events for the entire 46-day festival, mouthwatering photos of all 29 marketplace booths and the food available at each, and a brand new chapter on What’s NEW at the 2012 Festival!  Also included are touring strategies, an Eat to the Beat! MP3 playlist, and 11 themed booth crawls, a really fun way to experience the festival!  Click here to view more details and make sure to use the discount code CHEFSto get a $3 discount!!

Hope this got you as excited for the festival as I am!  So between now and next week, tell me: what’s your favorite healthy food at the Epcot Food & Wine Festival?