Africa returns past Germany as you walk towards China or past China as you walk towards Germany in kind of an awkward corner.

Both food items return and the Simonsig Pinotage is new.

Berbere-style Beef Tenderloin Tips with Onions, Jalapeños, Tomato and Pap – $5

Despite both items returning, we gave each a fresh try this year. Luckily(?) Disney toned down the blinding spiciness of last year’s version to the point where you can enjoy the heat from the peppers and enjoy the flavor of the beef at the same time. On the downside, the amount of pap has been reduced, but what’s there soaks up the flavors from the rest of the dish nicely. The beef isn’t the highest quality, but the portion is larger than some of the other steak dishes so there’s some give and take here. Overall, the flavor profile is mostly a generic jalapeno spiciness.

Taste: 5/10

Value: 5/10

Last year’s version.

Buttered Chicken with Micro Cilantro and Naan Bread – $5

It’s a similar situation with the Butter Chicken, which has a generic, lingering spiciness to it from the onions and peppers, which is tempered by the creamy sauce. Then instead of the pap soaking up the flavors, the naan serves the same purpose. I like the Butter Chicken a little better and it’s a nice way to try this variety of cuisine at a reduced price point. The portion is relatively decent too.

Taste: 6/10

Value: 6/10

Indaba Chenin Blanc – $5.50

  • Store price: 35 cents/ounce.
  • Festival price: $1.83/ounce.
  • ABV: 13.5%
  • Value: Haha

This is an offensive price for what is otherwise a very drinkable wine that’s a little sweet and a little tart, with a zesty citrus-y lemon flavor overall. It’s a good value on the shelf though if you ever see a bottle.

Simonsig Pinotage – $5.50

A lot rarer and the bottle price is at least $16, which makes it the best value here. It’s still an expensive proposition.

Jam Jar Sweet Shiraz – $4.50

  • Store price: 39.4 cents/ounce.
  • Festival price: $1.50/ounce.
  • ABV: 13.5%
  • Value: No

At $9.99 bottle, “jam jar sweet shiraz” is…as you might be able to guess…on the sweet side with dark berry flavors giving way to some chocolate on the back end. It’s more refreshing than your typical wine and would probably make a better sangria than it would a glass to go with your filet mignon. In this environment, I think it works though and it’s a good choice if you’re in the mood for something red but don’t like the lingering acidity of your typical cabernet or pinot noir. Very fruity and light. It’s way overpriced, but not quite as bad as the Indaba.


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