As you may be aware, the website reviews more than 250 items at the Epcot International Food and Wine Festival each and every year. You can find an index of those reviews, along with the respective menus for each Marketplace, here. The first day of the Festival is always a bit of a slog. Picture a bunch of socially-awkward, very sweaty dudes carrying big cameras and taking pictures of itty-bitty food samples in a tight semi-circle in more than 40 different locations over the course of eight hours and you’ll begin to get an idea about what “Festival Day” entails. Amusingly, we all could have dined at the Chef’s Table at Victoria & Albert’s for the amount of money we spent on day one and then it’s about 50 hours of writing the reviews. Of course, we return to Epcot over the course of the Festival to revisit some items that we didn’t much care for and to make sure some of our favorites are still worth the money. I’ve already updated the reviews a couple of times during the Festival, but I thought I would take an opportunity to look over some stuff Erin and I enjoyed(?) last week.
First up, a return to the $4.75 “Piggy Wings: Roasted Pork Wings with Korean BBQ Sauce and Sesame Seeds.” This is what the original review states:
The wings offer a surprising amount of tender, tangy, satisfying roasted pork topped with a generous sprinkle of crunchy, nutrient-rich sesame seeds. Relatively speaking, I think these are at least a dollar overpriced – if the dish arrived with three wings it would be a no-brainer. But as is, they’re worth picking up if you have plans on ordering another item or two. I’m not sure I’d specifically seek these out if the wait to order was 10+ minutes.
I’ve been really impressed with these so far this year. They first appeared a couple of years ago at the Craft Beer Marketplace. They were good there, too, but just about everything from Flavors from Fire is roasted, smoked, and grilled right next to the Marketplace, making for some incredibly fresh, delicious offerings. While paying nearly five bucks for two wings is on the rough side, the meat is so tender and flavorful that I think the original value rating is a little low. There’s also quite a bit of chicken clinging to the bone, which also increases the value proposition.
Our consideration of the Festival of the Lion King Signature Dining Packages continues with a look at our experience at the show and the private safari ride.
Part 1, located here, focused on the meal portion of the package at Tiffins. If you’re considering a meal at Walt Disney World’s highest-rated theme park restaurant then it’s worth checking out. Even if you don’t really care about seeing Rivers of Light, there’s also the potential to save a lot of money with that Dining Package, particularly if you’re considering the $62 Surf and Turf pictured above.
We return to Walt Disney World’s highest-rated theme park restaurant to check in on the value of the various Lion King Dining Packages. While this review will focus primarily on the components that make up those two packages, the review remains relevant to anyone considering a meal at Tiffins and particularly for those deciding whether or not the Rivers of Light Dining Package makes economical sense.
Our last visit was back in May for the Tiffins Talk with Executive Designer and Vice President, Creative, Joe Rohde. It was an experience that was even more fascinating than it was delicious and I’ve attempted to pass on a few of the most interesting details in this review. My original review with a number of pictures from around the restaurant is available here. For even more pictures, see this review or this review or this review or this review.
As you’re probably aware, Disney has raised the price of just about everything at Walt Disney World over the last month, including a big increase on snacks back on October 2nd. Around the same time, they also raised prices on buffets and character meals, along with the prices on most a la carte items at other restaurants. It can actually be a bit of a hassle to figure out how much most buffets and character meals cost because Disney doesn’t publish the exact figures due to the fact that they are subject to change seasonally. The following should offer a pretty good idea about what to expect, but keep in mind that you may see a $~3 increase if you’re dining around Christmas, Easter, or whenever Disney thinks demand is high enough that they can extract a few more dollars from you.
Of note is the fact that standard character meal lunches and dinners now cost more than $55 for anyone aged ten or over and $33 for kids between the ages of three and nine. ‘Ohana dinner is also up to $55 for adults and $31 for kids, while we may just be one more price increase away from dinner at Trail’s End topping $40 for adults.
I’ve organized the list by location, beginning with the theme parks and then continuing on to the resorts. I’ve also linked to my most recent reviews with an occasional link to a compatriot’s site when the information is more up to date.
All prices include tax.
- Adult: $21.29, Child: $12.77
- Adult: $79, Child: $47
- Lion King Dining Package Tier 1: Adult: $105.44, Child: $52.19
- Lion King Dining Package Tier 2: Adult: $78.81, Child: $30.89
- Rivers of Light Dining Package: Adult: $71.36, Child: $27.69
We return to Be Our Guest Restaurant after the most recent price increase along with the addition of beer and wine to breakfast and lunch.
Be Our Guest lunch remains a difficult reservation to book. You’ll want one if you’re planning on dining here because cast typically turn walk-ups away from at least 11:30am through 2pm. You may have luck getting in right at 11am or between 2pm and 2:30pm, but it’s far from guaranteed. If you’re having trouble finding availability, you might have some luck searching for a party of one and either finding overlapping times that way or making the reservation and then showing up with more people. While the search above showed up no availability for two or more, there were several reservations for one person available. Since there aren’t any tables for one, they should let a couple in with a reservation for just one guest.