You’ll find The Painter’s Palate in the Odyssey Building, which also doubles as the “Festival Showplace” on event days during the Epcot Arts Festival.
You might recognize it as the Craft Beer area during the fall Food and Wine Festival.
In addition to offering tables, air-conditioning, and a roof, the area also doubles as seminar space, so you have the opportunity to watch and listen while you snack if you so choose.
This is where you’ll find that Trio of Savory Croissant Doughnuts that have permeated the majority of Disney’s marketing for the Festival, in addition to the Flatbread, a few items that we’ve seen elsewhere, the beer flight, and one of the better drinks in the Pomegranate Mule.
The $9.50 Trio:
- Whipped Herb Cream Cheese with Sea Salt
- Chicken Mousse with Fresh Herbs and Everything Bagel Seasoning
- Spicy Tuna with Sriracha Mayonnaise and Sesame Seeds
As a snack credit, this is a slam dunk and should be the most expensive eligible item on property. I thought each of the doughnuts was a bit off-putting in its own way – the cream cheese version was overwhelmingly herb-y and there was so much of it that the top kept sliding off. I think the filling would have worked better on a cracker and I ended up spooning about half of the salty filling onto each half of the doughnut. The Chicken Mousse did not taste like chicken and the copious amount of salt in the “Everything Bagel Seasoning” overwhelmed everything else. The Spicy Tuna version seemed like it was trying to replicate the flavors from the Hawaii booth during Food/Wine as you get both the tuna/seaweed from the poke and the spicy mayo from the slider, but I didn’t think the thickness of the tuna ball really worked against the crispiness of the doughnut.
Overall, I wasn’t mad that I tried any of it, but the doughnuts are a lot more novel than they are a good mechanism to get these fillings into your mouth. Use a snack credit if you can.
The $5.25 Margherita Flatbread with Basil Pesto and Balsamic Drizzle was the most forgettable item we tried, though that may have been due to whoever was squirting the balsamic on top not realizing that the vinegar was not the main ingredient.
Otherwise, the cheese coverage was pretty lousy – there’s barely any on the far left or right pieces, and then little seasoning on the center pieces. On the plus side, the tomatoes were fresh, vibrant, and juicy and the sauce, which is only present on the piece second-from-the-left , was sweet and nuanced. At best, this is going to be an average cheese flatbread and your money may be best put to use elsewhere. On the other hand, there are very few vegetarian items available and there is some heft to this dish.
The $4 Pop’t Art: Abstract Designed Sugar Cookie with Chocolate Hazelnut Filling is very abstract…very abstract…with an incredibly sugary sugar cookie underneath incredibly sugary icing underneath more incredibly sugary icing. There is just a touch of hazelnut filling towards the center – I didn’t even realize it was there until getting through about half of it. It’s okay to break off and share among a few people, but you might feel a little jittery if you eat the whole thing yourself.
This is our second run-in with the $6.50 White Chocolate (Figment) Puzzle on an Artist Palette, which may be a fun little activity as you have an opportunity to “paint” the chocolate with a variety of colored icings, sprinkles, and blue unbranded chocolate candies (Mars where u at?). Just based on flavor, I’d put the money towards The Masterpiece Kitchen’s Triple Chocolate Mousse.
The $7 Mary Blair White Chocolate Art Painting with Chocolate Easel is teeny tiny and the art is not actually painted on…it’s a sticker…but it had a rich chocolate flavor and is precious to look at. What else is there in life?
I liked the $9.50 Pomegranate Mule featuring the Ginger People Ginger Beer and Van Gogh Vodka enough that it’s what I’ve been making at home over the last few days. It’s:
- 1.25 ounces vodka
- 2.25 ounces ginger beer
- 2.25 ounces pomegranate juice
- .25 ounce lime juice
Just quadruple that. But it’s mixed fresh at the Marketplace and has a nice fruity, almost Sangria-like flavor that almost completely masks the vodka.
The Neapolitan Nitro Beer Flight is a nice lineup. The 3 Daughters Queens Court Strawberry Blonde Nitro, brewed in Saint Petersburg, Florida, adds local Plant City strawberries at the end of the secondary fermentation process giving it a surprisingly light and fruity flavor. Usually I find these sorts of beers to teeter on medicinality (not a word), but this one is easily drinkable, light, and fruity. The nitro process is meant to create a much smoother, creamier liquid than your typical beer brewed with carbon dioxide and that difference is most notable in the Breckenridge Nitro Vanilla Porter. Here, you get a much thicker mouthfeel than you would with their regular Vanilla Porter, but still with the same roasted malts and chocolate backbone that is typical of the style. It’s definitely worth trying on tap either by itself or as part of the trio. Finally, Young’s Double Chocolate Stout is a world class beer – even thicker and more velvety than the Breckenridge entry with more of a bitter chocolate flavor. Very good.
Overall, most people looking to try a few things at the Arts Festival are going to gravitate towards the Doughnut Trio on the novelty front. And that’s fine – you may also enjoy the fillings more than I did. The Pomegranate Mule and Nitro Beer Flight are also worth checking out.