Of the four main parks at Disney World, Epcot outshines the others in the variety of food offered and most recommended places to eat (according to my research).
The reason why it rises to the top, especially among food lovin’ visitors, is the Epcot World Showcase.
The World Showcase consists of eleven countries, and each one has an alcove to present their culture, food, architecture and – get this- people of origin in traditional dress. The countries dot a path on a large loop, following the perimeter of a lake.
If entering from the Showcase Plaza, these are the countries in clockwise order: Mexico, Norway, China, Germany, Italy, The American Adventure, Japan, Morocco, France, United Kingdom, Canada. (See what I mean on this World Showcase map.)
On Sunday afternoon my big break came when I petitioned for autonomy from the group. For a couple hours I escaped, list in hand, and ate my way through the world.
|The Epcot section on my food list
|Name||What to get|
|Boulangerie Patisserie: France||napoleon, chocolate croissant, ham and cheese baguette|
|Tangierine Café: Morocco||chicken shawarma, tabbouleh, hummus, couscous, bread, baklava|
|Sunshine Seasons: Future World||Asian meals, grilled vegetable sandwich, salmon|
|La Cantina de San Angel: Mexico||nachos|
|Yorkshire County Fish House: UK||fish and chips|
|Kringla Bakeri og Cafe: Norway||sweet pretzel, school bread, danish, ham and apple sandwich|
|Lotus Blossom Cafe: China||veggie stir-fry|
|Sommerfest: Germany||pretzel, bratwurst, sauerkraut, apple strudel|
|Yakitori House: Japan||combos and sushi|
|Joy of Tea Stand: China||lucky combo, drink, ice cream|
Note: Click the name of the quick service restaurant to view their menu.
La Cantina de San Angel: Mexico
The night we arrived in Orlando, we practically sprinted to Ecpot to stake out optimal seating for the evening fireworks show. Due to the location (closest) and view (lakeside), it was predetermined to eat dinner at the Cantina de San Angel.
The cantina offers two variety of tacos, vegetarian empanadas, nachos and guacamole. Ben got the Tacos de Carne, I ordered the Tacos de Pollo and both come with tortilla chips. For dessert he chose Churros con Cajeta (with milky caramel) and I got the Coconut Paleta (a traditional Mexican popsicle), despite the unseasonably cold temperature. If it had been warmer, I would have gotten an Agua Fresco instead of water.
We were tired, cold and hunger stymies the senses, but these tacos tasted great. The meats were well-seasoned, topped with cilantro and served with a fresh wedge of lime. I favored the chicken over the beef. In hindsight we should have gotten one order of tacos and one order of nachos, because the nachos have all sorts of toppings. They are a little stingy with the cups of pico de gallo.
Tangierine Cafe: Morocco
The Tangierine Cafe has many glowing reviews from Disney visitors and for this reason it was at the top of my Epcot list. This was our destination for lunch Sunday afternoon. We arrived in Morocco after trekking half way around the world.
My stomach trumped my mind and I went for the Chicken Shawarma Platter, Ben opted for the Chicken and Lamb combo. The platters are served with side of hummus, tabbouleh, couscous salad, a piece of Moroccan bread, a dollop of tzaziki and baklava as the dessert. Yes, it’s a lot of food and yes, we ate it all!
Although unsure about the level of authenticity, everything sure did taste good. The cool, minty couscous, creamy hummus, and roasted meats were a welcome change of flavors and textures. The warm, crusty bread was useful for dipping into the hummus or tzaziki, and the baklava was oozing with nuts and honey. We cleaned our plates.
The boulangerie has a large array of pastries, croissants, sweets, coffee and a few savory items. It was hard to choose just one, but I decided on the Napoleon which was incredible. Layers of thin flaky pastry dough are sandwiched between a cloudy soft, sweet cream filling topped with a mound of powdered sugar.
My stomach was reaching capacity, but I couldn’t resist stopping in Germany for an authentic soft pretzel. I had to ignore the Karamell-Kuche Shop and pressed on towards the main food stand in the back.
This pretzel was a little different (and big). The interior had a strange richness similar to brioche; I’m guessing there’s a fair amount of egg in the dough. It was good for a couple of bites and then I couldn’t eat anymore.
Joy of Tea Stand: China
Perhaps the best snack credit I spent that solo day, was at the Joy of Tea Stand. The sun was shining, I had just eaten some salty pretzel, and a cold drink fit the bill. Despite the long line, I waited.
When my turn finally came, this punk kid marched right up and tried to cut in front of me! I immediately gave him “the look”, which then he apologized and stepped aside. (Don’t mess with Gidget.)
There are many tempting drinks such as Strawberry Oolong Tea Slush, Mango Green Tea slush, and Mango Gingerita, but I went with the Peach Oolong Iced Tea. Like diving into a pool, it was perfectly refreshing and cool (maybe a tad too sweet).
This is one place where you can’t go wrong, because there is delicious food at every turn. If efficiently using snack credits, you can easily sample dishes from around the world.