Disney Park and Resort Photo Updates

Epcot Photo Update: Norway Readies for “Frozen”; Food & Wine Festival; Macarons in France; My Heritage Books

Hi everyone!

We went to Epcot on Thursday – the weather has been perfect over the last few days, and I’m finally getting around to posting some photos! We also talk about much of what is here on our newest Mousesteps Weekly show, which is embeded in the article.

We have been testing MagicBands for over 2 months (although with our Premier Passes, there have been issues on and off). One of the nice things about the Fastpass+ is that if an attraction – in this case, Test Track – is down, then an email is sent out letting guests know their options for the day. We could have chosen 1 of about 8 different attractions and ridden anytime, including Test Track if it was working again. We didn’t end up using any of them.

One of my favorite booths at the Epcot Food & Wine Festival is for the free Craisins sample.

I don’t know the last time I actually wanted to buy a Disney calendar was. This one has 12×18 poster art, including the Sunshine Tree Terrace and Space Mountain. The front has a Mary Blair vibe to it. We definitely plan to pick this one up!

At the Norway Pavilion in World Showcase, the Stave Church is closed as it readies for a display of Norway that inspired Frozen.

Inside The Puffin’s Roost, a section is set off for the Elsa and Anna meet & greet that is due to open in November.  There is also quite a bit of Frozen merchandise here, including Elsa and Anna dolls. Disney’s Hollywood Studios already has a Frozen display, and Celebrate the Magic will include a Frozen segment (as will The World of Color in California).

Two plush figures are available in the form of Olaf the Snowman, and a reindeer named Sven. I learned that I didn’t know the difference between a moose and a reindeer on this week’s show (nor would I between an elk or caribou! They all looks similar to me).

There are Anna and Elsa dresses:

Picture frames:

Inside the Puffin’s Roost:

Here is an interview we did a couple of months back with Idina Menzel, Kristen Bell and Josh Gad about Frozen!

I mentioned how perfect the day was!

We don’t generally buy a lot of samples at the Epcot Food & Wine Festival – for a handful of samples, we can go have lunch somewhere nice. But we’ve been asked for more food photos, so we stopped at a few booths along our way. The first is Germany, where Jeff picked up a Roast Bratwurst in a Pretzel Roll ($5.00). It is mostly bratwurst with a small roll. Jeff always enjoys this item, and it is also tends to get laughs on our Instagram and Facebook pages.

The Germany train village is always dressed up for Festivals and Christmas. So far this year, there is less decor than usual. Epcot Food & Wine Festival signs finally arrived in the village, but nothing else has appeared (including the bog).

We had been contacted by “My Heritage Book” owner Deanna Bufo Novak to let us know that her books were now inside the Heritage Manor shop in the America Pavilion, as opposed to outside. Her company is also now listed on the Walt Disney World website! I’ve never seen them as busy as on Thursday, so it seems like a great fit. You can also find the books online here.

Heritage Manor Gifts keeps adding new merchandise, including these animal portraits.

We went upstairs to the Chase Lounge, which is available during the Epcot Food & Wine Festival to any Chase cardholder.

Phones can be charged here.

We had been told that on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays from 11-5 or so, there is a surprise “Happy Hour” (it isn’t really for an hour) where Cast Members will give out a ticket for free beer or wine. We were just about to leave the lounge at 2:30pm when we each received one, good for a drink between 2:30 and 3:00 p.m. It looked like they were handing out coupons for another 5 – 10 minutes after that as well.

We didn’t end up leaving as quickly as planned!

The Coke Freestyle drinks are always complimentary up here.

Next, we stopped at the Hops & Barley Market. We’d heard great things about the Craisin Bread Pudding ($3.25) and Rogue Chocolate Stout ($3.50+). Jeff enjoyed the beer, and the bread pudding was delicious!

I stopped to buy a half baguette at Les Halles Boulangerie Patisserie, and ended up taking home a box of 5 macarons too! The Macarons Collection is $10.33 plus tax. I don’t remember these being big in Paris (but it’s been 6 years now since I’ve been). These are absolutely wonderful!

Decorative macarons in a display:

This is our macaron box and baguette:

We stopped for fries (chips) in the United Kingdom pavilion, and enjoyed the view.

In Greece, we tried the Chicken Gyro ($3.75). There was a ton of lettuce on it, I thought maybe that meant there wouldn’t be much meat – but there actually was. It was not a bad sized sample.

The Port of Entry Store is a great place to find gifts from around Epcot’s World Showcase, but also Christmas merchandise like this Gingerbread Cookie Mix.

Jeff liked this apron with Chip and Dale!

We went for the trifecta of entrees in Scotland – the Seared Scottish Salmon ($4.50), Vegetarian Haggis ($3.25) and Scottish Banoffee Tart ($3.25). I don’t eat salmon, but Jeff thought it was excellent. The vegetarian haggis reminded me of a spicy stuffing. I find it more of an acquired taste, but I liked how it went with the mashed potatoes. And this was my second time trying the tart, which is one of my favorite items so far at the Festival.

Here is our Mousesteps Weekly YouTube Show from this week (#73), where we talk about our Epcot day, along with the Avatar land concept art and Jeff’s Everest tour.

We headed for the Festival Center, which is in the old Wonders of Life pavilion.

The Ghiardelli section offers a free sample to everyone, but my favorite thing here is the display of chocolate sculptures!

Paris is my favorite city, and the chocolate eiffel tower is amazing! There is also a macaron pyramid. The tower has a steampunk look to it. These creations are by Chef’s De France, Monsieur Paul and Les Halles Boulangerie Patisserie.

This lovely Lion King sculpture includes Simba, Pumba, Zazu, Mufasa and Rafiki from Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

This display is themed to Bacchus from Fantasia and is from Disney’s Contemporary Resort.

This is themed to a romantic ocean sunset, by Disney’s Boardwalk Resort. Check out the Hidden Mickeys behind the dolphins!

Wild Mustangs at Monument Valley by Disney’s Grand Floridian Pastry Shop:

Under the Sea, with more Hidden Mickeys!

Guests can buy drinks here as well, or fill up a box with their choice of Ghiardelli chocolates for a reasonable price.

Learn about Ghiardelli:

And in Mouse Gear, there were a couple of new shirts!

And Christmas is coming! I always love these pieces.

The Epcot Food and Wine Festival runs through November 11th, 2013, and we’ll bring you Elsa and Anna in Norway when they arrive!