Let’s talk about the food, first. Debuting this year is a booth featuring culinary delights from Scotland, the home country of Disney’s newest princess, Merida. And, after a year-long hiatus, the Brazil booth is returning to the festival this year with a new menu. Fan favorite Hawai’i returns – with its Kalua Pork Slider – and the vegan Terra Booth also returns and will be serving Trick’n Chicken Curry again. And last but not least, the Florida Local Booth is returning to this year’s festival, giving guests a chance to sample foods from local farms.
You can’t talk about food without talking about chefs, and this year’s crop of celebrity chefs is sure to please any palate. Guests will have a chance to see renowned chefs like Warren Brown, Paula DaSilva, Gale Gand, Jamie Deen, Robert Irvine, Dean Max, Rock Harper, Jeff Henderson, Art Smith, Buddy Valastro, Allen Susser, “Cake Boy” Eric Lanlard, Duskie Estes and John Stewart, Donald Link, Bryan Voltaggio and Emily Ellyn during various seminars, culinary demonstrations and other events.
The “Eat to the Beat” nightly concerts feature a few new acts this year including, the Go-Go’s (September 30-October 1), Edwin McCain (October 10-11), The Manhattan Transfer (October 12-13), Spin Doctors (October 31-November 1), and Christopher Cross (November 2-3). In all, 19 bands are slated to play during the festival. STARSHIP with Mickey Thomas kicks off the series on September 27. Bands returning to the stage again this year include The Pointer Sisters, Smash Mouth, Boyz II Men, Sister Hazel, Air Supply, Hanson and Big Bad Voodoo Daddy.
The Party for the Senses grand tasting events also returns this year on the following dates: October 5, 12, 19, 26, and November 2. Other events planned for this year’s festival include the “3D” Disney’s Dessert Discovery on select Fridays, Cheese Seminars on Saturdays, and Sweet Sundays on Sundays. These special events require reservations and separate event admissions. Guests will be able to call 407-WDW-FEST to make reservations in August. A firm date will be announced at a later time.
Guests attending the festival can pick up their free Marketplace Discovery Passport so they can get stamps at each international marketplace.
The 2013 Epcot International Food & Wine Festival runs from September 27 through November 1. Be sure to watch for more updates about the festival from our friends at the Disney Food Blog, where you can also read reviews of the 2012 festival.