We continue from Italy.
Spain returns to the 2019 Epcot Food and Wine Festival for its third year, positioning itself across from the Germany Pavilion on the Italy side.
The Charcuterie in a Cone and Seafood Salad return the same both in name and description, while the Spanish-style Paella is now served with Botifarra and Roasted Chicken instead of the Chorizo and Roasted Chicken that was served last year. We’ll see if it’s an improvement. All three wines also return.
- Charcuterie in a Cone with imported Spanish Meats, Cheeses, and Olives with an Herb Vinaigrette – $6.50
- Spanish-style Paella with Botifarra and Roasted Chicken – $5.50
- Seafood Salad with Shrimp, Bay Scallops, Mussels, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, White Balsamic Vinegar and Smoked Paprika – $6
- Wine Flight – $5.50
Charcuterie in a Cone with imported Spanish Meats, Cheeses, and Olives with an Herb Vinaigrette – $6.50
This is a fun presentation with prosciutto, salami, ham, olives, and tangy cheese stuffed into the transportable cone that’s topped with an Italian dressing that gives each bite added zip. I’m not sure if it’s a tremendous value as most people are probably familiar with grocery store meats and cheeses, but everything tasted flavorful and fresh. You can also watch cast members freshly slicing some of the ham inside the Marketplace. It’s not every day that someone hands you a cone of meat. Above is what we were served this year.
Here’s last year’s. I think the two Cones are different sizes, which may be why the original looks to be overflowing, while the 2019 iteration is packed in a little more loosely. I also appreciated that this year, the Vinaigrette was a lot less oily, which helped the various pieces taste fresher. I’m not sure that I would go out of my way to pick this up, but it pairs nicely with the wine and is kind of fun.
Spanish-style Paella with Botifarra and Roasted Chicken – $5.50
Despite officially changing from Chorizo to Botifarra, Disney is using the same picture on the menu. You’ll also note how…I’m not sure how to put this…”meat dense” the dish is in Disney’s picture with a lot of chicken and sausage mixed in with the rice.
Here’s what we were served this year, with just one thin slice of “botifarra,” that measures about an inch and a half, on top of a thin layer of rice, with a few peas and what might be just one small piece of off-color chicken. It was one of the saddest dishes we had been served that day. And you’ll remember that we were just at Italy. This isn’t really Paella, either. The dry yellow rice doesn’t carry much flavor and the piece of generically-spicy sausage is simply placed on top during the plating process.
Here’s last year’s Chorizo version, which doesn’t look much different.
At best, this is going to be a proficient rice dish with some mildly spicy sausage and well-seasoned chicken. It’s a pretty safe skip even under the best case scenario.
As it stands:
Seafood Salad with Shrimp, Bay Scallops, Mussels, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, White Balsamic Vinegar and Smoked Paprika – $6
This dish was one of the prettiest we were served all day with the vibrant seafood glistening brightly in the Florida sun. And everything that was above the oil and vinegar tasted great. But there was so much oil at the bottom of the cup that at least half the salad tasted incredibly greasy as the oil absolutely overwhelmed all of the other stuff. On the plus side, there is a lot of seafood packed in – you wonder why they can be so generous when the seafood is placed in a cup, but be so stingy with less-expensive ingredients on top of the “Paella.” Maybe the price of rice has gone up to $100 a pound or something. There’s certainly no saffron involved.
Wine Flight – $5.50
With Lagar de Bouza Albariño, Casa Castillo Monastrell, and Espelt Garnacha Old Vines
All three wines are intelligent buys at the store with bottle prices averaging about $13. That makes the flight here for $5.50 a relative steal considering the quality of the wine and the variety of flavors. Our pours were also on the heavy side. Anybody who enjoys wine should add one to their order.
On the food front, there isn’t anything here that specifically stands out as a compelling buy. Nothing was so bad that I would swat it out of your hand if you offered me a bite, but “just fine” at these price points isn’t going to cut it. On the plus side, the wine flight is very good and you might attach a Meat Cone or Seafood Salad to enjoy alongside it.