Saturday, October 11, 2014

Gluten Free at Epcot's Food and Wine Festival 2014

I have always enjoyed the Food and Wine Festival at Epcot. Trying new foods and flavors while walking around the World Showcase is a great way to spend an evening or two in the early fall. And while I don't drink alcohol, there is certainly enough food to enjoy to make the trip worthwhile.

This year, the Discovery Passport that lists the menu selections for each country also includes designations for Vegetarian and Gluten Free options. This certainly made it easy for my trip(s) around the world.  Experience has taught us that you should not try to enjoy the Food and Wine Festival in just one day, and you should always bring a tasting friend.  So we blocked out two evenings - one starting on the Mexico side and the other beginning from the Canada side of Epcot.

Not all countries and booths had gluten free options, but most did.  These are the ones that I had:

  • Patagonia:  Grilled Beef Skewer with Chimichurri Sauce and Boniato Puree.  This was a thinly sliced piece of beef on a skewer that had a chimichurri sauce on it that gave it both a spicy and cool flavor. The boniato puree is a white sweet potato and regular white potato that are mashed and so delicious.
  • Mexico - Rib Eye Taco: Marinated Rib-eye, Roasted Chipotle Salsa, and Grilled Scallions on a Corn Tortilla.
  • Farm Fresh - Nueske's Pepper Bacon Hash with Sween Corn, Potatoes, Hollandaise and Pickled Jalapenos.  We got this just as they were closing up for the night (free). I only had a small taste of it but other people online have been raving about it.
  • Brazil - Pao de Queijo - Brazillian Cheese Bread. This is a light roll that has a melted white cheese inside (mild). The roll is a bit crusty outside and very thin. This was my absolute favorite thing at the Food and Wine Festival 2014. In fact, I had it both days we were there. I haven't had a good roll since becoming gluten free and these met my bread needs in both taste and texture! 
  • Puerto Rico - Carne Guisada con Arroz Blanca - Slow Braised Beef with Puerto Rican Grown Rice.  While this was a plentiful serving, I thought the dish needed salt. The rice was really good.
  • Scotland - Fresh Potato Pancake with Smoked Scottish Salmon and Herb Sour Cream. I'm not a big salmon fan, but the potato pancake was pretty good; I would have been happy with just the potato pancake. My friend ate the salmon after I tried a bite of it.
Overall, if you are eating gluten free for health reasons or for preference, there are plenty of options at the Food and Wine Festival, so don't let your dietary restrictions keep you from going.  I listed those that I had, but there are at least 15 more gluten-free items on the menu.

No comments: