We continue on from The Almond Orchard.
Hawaii with an apostrophe returns in the same location as the first Marketplace kiosk that you’ll run into on the walk towards Canada. This makes it incredibly popular from 12pm-5pm and typically less so after that.
Every item returns in name from last year’s Festival, though the Mai Tai is now served with Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum in place of Sammy’s Beach Bar Rum.
- Kalua Pork Slider with Sweet-and-Sour Dole Pineapple Chutney and Spicy Mayonnaise – $5
- Grilled Tuna Tataki with Seaweed Salad and Pickled Cucumbers and Wasabi Cream – $5.25
- Teriyaki-glazed SPAM Hash with Potatoes, Peppers and Onions and Spicy Mayonnaise – $4.25
- Passion Fruit Cheesecake with Toasted Macadamia Nuts – $4
- Maui Brewing Company Bikini Blonde Lager – $4.25
- Florida Orange Groves Sparkling Pineapple Wine – $10
- Mai Tai with Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum and Dole Pineapple Juice – $9
Kalua Pork Slider with Sweet-and-Sour Dole Pineapple Chutney and Spicy Mayonnaise – $5
This is a favorite year in and year out with a nice scoop of the tangy pork placed on the soft bun along with the creamy, zesty Sriracha-heavy mayo in tandem with the sweet-and-sour mixture of pineapples, onions, and peppers with a little bit of ginger, brown sugar, and garlic. I’ll admit that I like the version of a couple of years ago a little more with the Hawaiian roll in place of the potato bun and pork that seemed to be marinated a little more heavily, but it remains a fan favorite and something that most people are going to pick up.
Grilled Tuna Tataki with Seaweed Salad and Pickled Cucumbers and Wasabi Cream – $5.25
I still miss the Spicy Tuna Poke, which looked a lot more appealing than this.
While there’s more tuna on the plate than what you would have received a couple of years ago, it was gummy, virtually flavorless, and had a slimy, wet texture. Disney typically steers clear of real spice, so I’m not sure what they were going for with the wasabi cream, which tasted like watered-down mayonnaise. I’m not crazy about the pickled cucumber mixed in with the seafood salad either. Others have reported better luck and I’ll return to this myself later in the Festival to see if things have improved. I wouldn’t write it off entirely.
Teriyaki-glazed SPAM Hash with Potatoes, Peppers and Onions and Spicy Mayonnaise – $4.25
I would leave your preconceived notions about canned meat at the door as this Hash is quite good. The Spam is roasted nicely and has a crispness to it along with a mild sweetness and a heavy dose of salt. The popular Spicy Mayonnaise makes another appearance here and adds a creamy, spicy element along with the peppers and green onions. The potatoes add a lot of heft, making this a satisfying portion for the money and a good value. Based on the four items that we ordered, I wouldn’t have expected this to be the standout.
Passion Fruit Cheesecake with Toasted Macadamia Nuts – $4
With “cheesecake” in the title, I expected this to be a lot denser, but the texture and firmness seemed to be more akin to a sponge cake. On the plus side, it had a very fresh, vibrant passion fruit flavor. The macadamia nuts helped cut the sweetness and added a nice crunch. This is far from a “must buy,” but adding it to an order would be far from the worst thing you could do at the Festival. It’s not a terribly large portion, though. The Maple Bourbon Boursin Cheesecake coming up at The Cheese Studio is the standout.
Maui Brewing Company Bikini Blonde Lager – $4.25
This is a clean, crisp, highly-carbonated beer with no bitterness to speak of throughout each smooth sip. It tastes great in the heat of the day with a little bit of honey biscuit and grass. It’s far from world-class, but it’s worth trying if you’re in the area and high temperatures continue to loom.
Florida Orange Groves Sparkling Pineapple Wine – $10
This picture is from the Flower and Garden Festival when the same sparkling wine was offered. Despite what is probably a low ABV, the wine is very alcohol forward with a strong, off-putting artificial sweetness continuing through each sip. The price also continues to skyrocket – this was offered at $6 last year and comes in at a crazy $10 this year. If you’re looking for something sparkly in the area, spend the extra $6 for the Imperial Brut from The Almond Orchard.
Mai Tai with Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum and Dole Pineapple Juice – $9
I have never had much luck with Hawaii’s cocktail, which is typically a sugary mess with the possibility that somebody poured a splash of rum into the vat at some point during the Festival. While the number of cocktails available at the Festival is down this year, China still does it better.
Overall, I’d make a stop for the Kalua Pork Slider and Teriyaki-glazed Spam, perhaps with the addition of the beer. Others have had more positive things to say about the Tuna and it won’t break the bank at $5.25, so you might give it a whirl too, though there are more ambitious dishes all around.
We turn our sights to Future World with the Wine and Dine Studio, the review of which you can find here.