Well that’s a title if I’ve ever seen one.
Two pieces of news right off the bat. Rapunzel began greeting guests at 9am today. You may remember that she had been appearing first at 9:20am. The 9am meet time means you won’t have to stand in line for 20 minutes right off the bat should you choose to meet her first thing in the morning (as you should). In turn, that should allow for a shorter wait at Tinker Bell, who first appears at 9:15am. It’s actually really good news. The 20 minute wait in the morning is (was) obnoxious. And more on the FASTPASS/”xPass” test beginning May 1st here. Should you be selected and not mind some creepy bro following you around, I would appreciate it if you would let me!
Headed out to Epcot on Saturday April 28th. It’s 1:07pm. This is another example of where this website and TouringPlans.com had completely different “crowd predictions.” easyWDW has Epcot as its least recommended Park while TouringPlans.com has Epcot as its only recommended Park with a “per park crowd level” of 3.5. We have evening Extra Magic Hours attached to attract Disney resort guests and the Dance World Championships going on in the World Showcase. Upon arrival, both sides of the extended queue are full at Spaceship Earth, which means you’re looking at a 30 minute wait for an attraction that’s ordinarily a walk-on given the average overall crowd level and time of day. Living with the Land is offering FASTPASS and Soarin’s wait time is a cool 100 minutes. The overall crowd level is accurate. We’ll be taking a look at Hollywood Studios today (Sunday) where Rock ‘n’ Roller Coaster had a 20 minute standby wait at 2pm and Toy Story Mania was still distributing FASTPASSes at 2:15pm.
This is about as many people as I’ve ever seen taking in a Jammitors performance.
They’re a fun group that’s largely ignored given “normal” circumstances. But with Test Track closed and Mission: Space sitting at a 50 minute wait, people have some time on their hands.
The scene remains the same outside Test Track. There’s no mention of the Test Track All Stars on this week’s Times Guide. I would imagine they’re still there since the Times Guide has never mentioned them, even though they have been appearing every day over the last two weeks. This week’s Times Guide also does not note the 10pm close for the Land Pavilion or Character Spot, even though both continue happening as well. Head over after 9pm to find short to nonexistent lines for Soarin’, Living with the Land, Circle of Life, and Character Spot.
Quite a ways to go on this one.
The other two Future World wait times boards now show Test Track’s status as “Closed” rather than “Renewal.” Renewal was so dumb you have to wonder what was going through the minds of whoever thought it up. Considering Epcot attendance is down 7% this year as compared to last year, we may actually see some punishment doled out.
But that can wait. Bird bath!
The Flower and Garden Festival continues through May 20th.
Good news on the longpants front. Most of the designs are available as underwear! I would make sure your relationships are cemented before dropping your pants around anyone if you’re going to have a pair of these on. I’m not sure anything would bring the prototypical, “On second thought hunny, I’m pretty tired” faster than a pair of these suckers.
Considering you can get two pairs of the lounge pants for $50.00, you might just want to buy the pants and macramé yourself about 30 pairs of boxers yourself.
I’m still scared to say anything is new after the Tower of Terror incident, but I think these are new:
You can get the characters both coming and going.
Maybe these too. Maybe not. Let me know if you want to see some sort of specific merchandise pictured. I tend to stick with your basic garments, though I’ve been known to dabble in pillows and straws.
We’ll see how much more Disney quick service it’s going to take until I need one of these.
Heading up through Mexico, it’s reasonably busy for this time of day.
With Tutto Italia reopening May 1st, this temporary kiosk’s days are numbered.
Tutto out from behind refurbishment walls:
We’ll take a look inside when there aren’t armed Italian women standing guard out front. Or Tuesday, whichever comes first.
This is the artist rendering for Tutto Gusto, the new wine bar next to Tutto Italia.
And here it is in practice. I hope it’s good because a building that looks like a bunker during the war in the back of the Italy Pavilion isn’t exactly going to pull people in.
Another look. It’s about as wide as a pair of longpants. Maybe a little wider.
Hopefully it’s good. I’ve been practicing for the opening by drinking a lot of wine and eating a lot of cured meats.
The back of the Pavilion in context. That’s Via Napoli and the Pizza Window in the back.
Speaking of which, Via Napoli’s pizza window days are probably also numbered.
Just to reiterate, it’s not Via Napoli pizza as served inside the restaurant. It would be awesome if it was!
Back out in front of the Pavilion.
The store in this building really isn’t as big as you would imagine.
Neither is this wine store.
Depending on your rating, Italy’s architecture and ambiance are underrated.
The Kidcot station sits to the left of the wine store. Very convenient. If you’re looking for a table in this area, Italy is one of your best bets. Of course, you’re also close to Liberty Tree Inn over at the United States Pavilion. Plenty of air-conditioned seating there.
I see a lot of weird stuff at Walt Disney World. One of the weirdest was when a very old woman removed her heels and actually climbed into the fountain to take a picture with her arm around the gentleman with the trident. Eight of her family members were spotting her.
A gondola ride in Italy would be fun. This is a great spot to view IllumiNations if it isn’t reserved for a private party. Hang back about 20 minutes after IllumiNations ends and you can enjoy walking through World Showcase at night mostly unimpeded.
Some Italy merchandise:
I can only think of one situation where it would be appropriate to wear this. And even then.
And at the little store attached to the Enoteca Castello Wine Store on the opposite side:
Shame, my limit for pasta is $25.07 per pound and this is $25.3636363636. It’s beautiful though. As far as pasta goes.
Let me know if you’d like the deets or a larger image on any of these. A lot is lost on resizing down to 650 pixels wide.
I spent the afternoon with AJ from Disney Food Blog. That’s her hand, making this a pretty risque picture for a Walt Disney World blog. Hopefully she doesn’t get in trouble. This is the sangria from the Tangierine Cafe. As it turned out, it’s one of the stupidest purchases I’ve made. And considering the Burrito Not Hot Dog, The Pizza Burger, and I don’t want to think about what else, that’s saying a lot. The thing is barely taller than the lens cap. It’s served from a bottle of what I think is “Real Sangria” which would run you $15.49 for three liters and comes bottled from Spain. And this little two ounce cup cost $6.99. Yup! Seven bucks for two ounces of from-a-bottle sangria. Obviously this should be avoided!
I ordered the sangria because I had already tried the three frozen beverages and wasn’t in the mood for a coffee with a drop of liqueur during a 90 degree afternoon. These are about as Moroccan as the sangria. It’s basically the non-alcoholic “frozen fruit drink” with an at-best one-ounce of Castillo Silver rum poured on top. Castillo Rum (Puerto Rico) would run you about $17 for 1.5L, so it isn’t exactly the good stuff. On the plus side, these slushes are refreshing on a hot summer day. The “Sultan’s Colada” on the left is “very” “colada-y,” so keep that in mind before ordering. You really have to like coconut and it was the least favored of the three. The “Habibi Daiquiri” on the right was the best, in my opinion. But still, these things really aren’t anything special.
Over here to the new-ish sake bar across from Mitsukoshi Department Store in the Japan Pavilion. This is a recycled image.
A reminder of your choices.
If I recall correctly, this is the Pineapple Sake Cocktail. It tasted very much like a pina colada. There isn’t a lot, if any, flavor from the sake. The pineapple flavor overwhelmed it. Compared to what will only be referenced in the future as the “sangria incident,” this was a run away winner. If you really like pina coladas, this would be a good choice. It was quite refreshing, though the booziness is questionable. Should have videotaped the pour.
The Green Tea Amasake Mist. I enjoyed this a lot too. It wasn’t as overwhelmingly sweet/sugar-y as the Moroccan frozen drinks. The taste is a lot more subtle to the point where you want to keep drinking it to get just a little bit more flavor. As opposed to the drinks in Morocco where you want to drink more just to get it over with. I bet the Strawberry version would be even better. Recommended.
I had mentioned that the Kabuki Cafe was offering the chicken bites/ribs that had originally been on the menu, but never materialized until a few weeks ago. That seems to be over as the items weren’t available. We may never know if they were good!!!!
Over to the Norway Pavilion, where the line for Maelstrom is backed up to Akershus. Hey, I didn’t recommend Epcot today, remember!
Some amount of work being done to the waterfall. I really wanted a picture here! Vacation ruined!
HDR’d out. You just want to slap me, don’t you?
Last one, I promise! In case you’re wondering what $30 worth of margaritas looks like from the Mexico stand, here you go!
Well, $27.69 worth I guess.
The Patron Lime Margarita on the left and the Milagro Pomegranate Margarita on the right. I couldn’t really taste the tequila in either, which is good if there’s a lot of tequila in it and not good if there isn’t any tequila in it. The addition of these two “premium” margaritas is a reaction to everyone going inside to La Cava, no doubt, but La Cava is still the correct choice. The problem today was that it was so busy in there and you’d have to muscle your way up to the bar to order. Usually, La Cava will run a line so that each person has a chance to comfortably tell the bartender what they’d like to order. Anyway, both of these were prepared well and the recipe seemed solid. If I was making it, I would have dropped another four ounces of tequila in it. But that’s just how I roll. The margaritas inside at La Cava are better.
Now over to the Refreshment Port in between the United Kingdom and Canada Pavilions. We took a look at the Chicken and Cheese Poppers earlier in the week here.
A reminder of what it looks like. Pictured above this picture is the Frozen Bacardi Mojito ($8.25). Note the two straws. We are so cute! This had a stronger taste of mint than I was expecting. Considering there are probably no real ingredients in the thing, I would have to guess that it’s artificially flavored in some way. That said, I enjoyed this one more than the Moroccan Frozen Drinks and the frozen drinks available at the Mexico Margarita Stand. It wasn’t just mind-boggling sweet and the mint aftertaste, however artificial, was pleasant. Also recommended and really your only frozen drink choice until France.
These shrimp are really the star of the show. They’re the same as what’s served over at Columbia Harbour House at Magic Kingdom.
And they’re flippin’ $7.19. A steal. The Cajun Tartar Sauce was great too. Dare I say, better than cocktail sauce! I know it’s shocking! That’s why I’m using exclamation points! With the Fried Fish up at Yorkshire County Fish, I could definitely see splitting one of those and one of these. As heretical as it might be to say, I actually prefer the shrimp to the fish. So if you like Columbia Harbour House shrimp or aren’t in the mood for fish and don’t want to have to walk all the way up to Morocco, then these would be a good choice. There’s enough tartar sauce for the fries too, which is nice. Don’t tell Disney or they’re going to jack up the price.
Aha! Snuck in another HDR! You didn’t really think I was done, did you!
I had a great time with AJ, even if she was just casing me for TouringPlans.com. Hopefully we can do something like this again.
Sorry, I lied about the Yacht Club.
Well okay. One inside the Yacht Club. Research on the best scotch drinking locations in Walt Disney World continues. This one is very dignified, but the chances of babes walking by in bikinis are too slim.
The Beach Club Resort has finally received its resort specific merchandise. Here’s a look:
Another nice set.
I’ll post a resort update later. Nothing too exciting going on.
Looking across the water on the way back.
Said Dance Championship. Thousands and thousands of dancers/cheerleaders around. Most of them will be gone tomorrow with the stragglers gone on Tuesday.
Best bachelor party ever.