What Do You Do On a "Mom-cation"? Eat and Drink Mostly! October 2018 Dining Report COMPLETE 12/30

Discussion in 'Disney Dining Reviews' started by Hettie, Nov 5, 2018.

  1. buteraa

    buteraa DIS Veteran

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    Great report so far. A solo trip is on my bucket list.
     
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  2. ThreeBoyMama

    ThreeBoyMama DIS Veteran

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    What a great first day! I can't wait to hear more about your trip. So far I am liking the amount of drinking you're doing :P
     
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  4. 2xcited2sleep

    2xcited2sleep DIS Veteran

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    Fun first day! So nice as a solo to be able to do what you want with no compromises!
     
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  5. JerseyJanice

    JerseyJanice A Disboards original...

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    Reading along and enjoying your report. How did you like Pop Century?
     
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  6. HolRae

    HolRae Mouseketeer

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    Enjoying your reviews. I love solo trips to Disney.
     
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  7. Hettie

    Hettie Mouseketeer

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    We're in Kentucky, just visited Annapolis for the sailboat show. Beautiful city, gorgeous homes, but OMG the traffic! Traffic has gotten pretty bad in our city, but DC area rush hour commute is a whole 'nother story.

    Too bad about Tiffins. We've only tried Nomad Lounge and will probably just stick with that as the entrees at Tiffins aren't particularly appealing to me with the current menu.

    Thanks! I highly recommend the solo trip after my experience.

    Thanks for joining in! I keep a pretty steady pace with the drinks for the whole trip...

    I reveled in that quite a bit!

    Thanks for joining. I thought Pop was great for my solo trip, I really like their newly remodeled rooms with TONS of storage. I also liked that I could leave the second bed in the storage position and it made it like a nice little studio. The bus service worked well for me, except for one night leaving MK, but there are ways around that...I will expound in my report. I wasn't a huge fan of the food court and the common areas seemed loud to me. I prefer the ambient music at the lodges or the Poly, so I would prefer those resorts for a family trip when we spend much more time at the resort. I also like having table service restaurants at my resort. But definitely would stay there again for a solo trip.

    Thanks!!!
     
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  8. kastoney

    kastoney Disney foodie served with a side of sarcasm

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    Ahh. I didn't think you were here but one never knows :-) Traffic is certainly its very own four letter word around here. But I've lived here my whole life and quite literally learned how to drive on the Beltway so its sadly just my norm.
     
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  9. Hettie

    Hettie Mouseketeer

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    Day 2 – October 27
    “What are you going to do with it???”
    I woke up around my usual time and I was glad because I was on a mission to ride Slinky Dog at rope drop. I had a cup of coffee in the room and was out the door quickly, walking up to the tapstiles at 8:06 am. It was chilly (below 70) and I was wishing that I had grabbed my sweater. After some line shuffling when a CM came over and informed some of us that she was going to be opening up a set of tapstiles on the far right (opposite side of where we were), I ended up third in line. Woohoo!

    I usually avoid these “sea of humanity” events at all costs, especially with the whole family, but I hadn’t been able to get a FP for Slinky Dog and I was determined to ride it. Here I am trying to deal:

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    It wasn’t that bad as a solo, but I absolutely will not do this with a stroller or small child. Just no. I wasn’t throwing elbows, so I think I ended up with about a 10-15 minute wait. Slinky Dog is big fun though, totally worth the early morning and waiting around to get to ride.

    I had a FP for Alien Saucers later, but the wait was just 15 minutes so I decided to go ahead and ride in case I wanted to ride twice. It was fun, but not worth a repeat.

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    After that I reluctantly decided to endure the 30 minute wait for TSMM and I’m glad I did because I cancelled all my Studios FP and changed them to MK for the evening, getting some great attractions in the process.

    I was getting very hungry haven not eaten anything yet. I had originally thought about eating at the Brown Derby Lounge for lunch, but it wasn’t even 10:30 and I didn’t want to wait around. I decided to go with my backup plan to head over to Epcot to have some more F&W booth items.

    It was such a gorgeous morning and the boat became more and more packed as we stopped at each resort. I hopped off at Beach Club and beat the boat to Epcot, heading straight for the France booth which was already open at 10:55.

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    Croissant aux Escargots: Escargot Croissant with Garlic and Parsley — $5.75

    St-Germain Sparkling Kir: Sparkling Wine and St-Germain Elderflower Liqueur — $8.50

    Man, this was a great brunch. It was one of those moments when you’re in Epcot and the weather is gorgeous and you’re starving and parched…and somehow you find the perfect food and drink. I would eat snails for breakfast every day if they served this on the regular bakery menu. And you can never go wrong with sparkling wine before noon. It was decent and the elderflower liqueur made it fun. I could have eaten 2 or 3 more croissants, they’re very small, but I had other items on my list.

    I used to be a big fan of Leffe pale ale and I wanted to try the beer flight in Belgium.

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    Beer Flight: Leffe Blonde Belgian Pale Ale, St. Bernardus Witbier, St. Bernardus Abt 12 — $9.50

    The Leffe, oddly enough, ended up being my least favorite, with the ABT being #1 and the Witbier being a close second. However, I wasn’t really feeling the beer in general for some reason and this ended up being my last beer of the trip.

    I was still starving and I made my way quickly to my next planned stop at the Spain booth.

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    Seafood Salad with Shrimp, Bay Scallops, Mussels, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, White Balsamic Vinegar and Smoked Paprika – $6

    Wine Flight: Lagar de Bouza Albariño, Rías Baixas, Casa Castillo Monastrell, Jumilla, Espelt Garnacha Old Vines, Catalonia – $5.50


    The seafood salad was okay. There was plenty of seafood, but it lacked some flavor. It could have used a bit more salt and lot more vinegar as the acidity was nowhere to be found. None of the wines were particularly memorable either, but I still enjoyed my spot by the lagoon soaking up the atmosphere.

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    I was still starving and was excited to pick up something heavier at my next stop in Germany.

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    Schinkennudeln: Pasta Gratin with Ham, Onions and Cheese — $4.25

    Even though this dish has been around for years, I had somehow never tried it. I’m glad I finally did because it was basic, comforting, a nice portion and delicious. I gobbled this up quickly and my belly was happy to finally have something of substance.

    The only remaining food item on my list for the day was a dessert and I was still feeling pretty hungry. So far I had stuck with my plan to only eat booth items that were new-to-me and I wanted to keep that up. I was walking by the China booth and remembered that some had reported enjoying the beef pancake and I’d been wanting to try the Byejoe Punch for awhile.

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    Xi’an Pancake with Beef — $6.75

    Byejoe Punch: Chinese Bai Jiu Spirit, Lychee, Coconut and Pineapple Juice — $10.50

    I should have taken a photo of the inside of the pancake, it was full of beef. The pancake was fresh and the beef filling had a decent amount of spice. I was happy with this and glad I tried it. The portion was generous too.

    The first sip of Byejoe Punch tasted like suntan lotion. The liquor was poured on top, so I mixed it up better. The next couple of sips were okay, but by the time I got less than halfway through the drink, it started tasting like a mixture of suntan lotion and rocket fuel. The bai jiu spirit just wasn’t sitting well with me and the combination of flavors wasn’t working either. I sadly threw this one out and that’s something I almost never do. At least now I know and I will never order it again.

    Continued in next post...
     
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  10. Hettie

    Hettie Mouseketeer

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    My last booth of the day was to be Greece.

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    Wine Flight: Domaine Skouras Moscofilero, Domaine Sigalas Assyrtiko, Argyros Atlantis Red Blend -- $6.50

    I enjoyed this wine flight, the reds were tasty and the white a little on the sweet side so I saved it to go with my dessert.

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    Bougatsa: Warm Phyllo Dough Strudel with Sweet Vanilla Custard, Lemon Honey Syrup and Cinnamon – $4

    This was right up my alley, the custard filling was barely sweet and I loved the flavors of the syrup and cinnamon. It was also a good size and would be great to share.

    Oh, and a funny exchange ensued regarding this item...

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    I needed a plastic wine glass for the room and I had only gotten the flight size so far that day, which is the size of a thimble. While I was waiting for my order in Greece to be ready, I asked if I could possibly have one of the regular size wine glasses and the CM eyed me very suspiciously and said, “What are you going to do with it???” I paused for a moment and finally said, “Ummm…drink wine out of it. In my room. At my resort.” She looked perplexed and turned to another CM in the booth who was just like, “Sure, whatever.” I ended up using my silly little contraband cup the next two days so it was worth the effort.

    I stopped for some Photopass photos and obtained this silly shot that was supposed to be my “excited about F&W face”:

    PhotoPass_Visiting_EPCOT_414043402284.JPG

    Then I wandered up to the DVC lounge in the Imagination pavilion to try to recreate an old photo I have, but didn’t have much luck due to some structural changes and really bad photos that a CM took. I’ll have to try again next trip when Chad is with me. I think I ate some Doritos or something in there because I always feel like I should take the “free” stuff since I am, in essence, paying for it anyway. I was starting to get a little tired and since the cool, cloudy weather was not lending itself to a pool day, decided it was naptime and headed back to Pop for a snooze.

    Day 2 to be continued…
     
    Last edited: Nov 14, 2018
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  11. Ruth B

    Ruth B DIS Veteran

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    What a fantastic trip. great food and drink choices.

    Im enjoying following along
     
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  12. ThreeBoyMama

    ThreeBoyMama DIS Veteran

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    Seriously, what a fun trip! Loving your photos. Can't wait to hear more :)
     
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  13. kastoney

    kastoney Disney foodie served with a side of sarcasm

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    Woohoo!!!! What a great idea to hit rope drop and not even use FP here.

    Yum! Looks like the perfect brunch to me too!

    I don't think I've seen this pancake before. I love, love, love all things and Chinese so i would be all over this.

    Yuck! In what world does suntan lotion and rocket fuel work as a drink :confused3

    How weird that they would have questioned giving this to you. Its a cup? What else could you do with it?
     
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  14. SweetSerenity

    SweetSerenity Thank you evenin' star!

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    Hi! We were at food and wine, too, but you did it right. You had some of the items I wanted to try, but was too full to get the chance.
     
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  15. DLo

    DLo DIS Veteran

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    Following along. I have done a couple of solo trips and enjoy the freedom looking forward to reading more about your food and wine adventures.
     
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  16. Hettie

    Hettie Mouseketeer

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    Day 2 continued...

    I woke up refreshed from a little nap and got ready to head back out for the evening. I originally thought I would go to Disney Springs this evening and do some lounge hopping, but that also sounded like it would take a great deal of energy, so I had a backup plan in case I was feeling like a more relaxing dinner. I decided to go the relaxing route and I’m very glad I did because I overhead some people the next day talking about how insane it was at Disney Springs the night before.

    My backup plan was to have dinner in the lounge at California Grill, which meant I needed to get there close to opening to make sure I could get a table. After taking the bus to MK, then walking over to the Contemporary, I arrived there around 5:15 and there were still several lounge tables available. This was my first time dining in the lounge here and I really enjoyed sitting in the comfy chairs and feeling a bit more casual. The location and table spacing in the lounge area also makes for a great view:

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    I love to start a signature dinner with a glass of sparkly:

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    This was the Roederer Rose Sparkling for $19 and it was delicious, on the dryer side but with some fruit flavors.

    My server brought over the bread service:

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    This is now a nice sourdough with a sundried (I think) tomato and olive oil dipping sauce. It was good, I always enjoy sourdough.

    For my meal, I went with a couple of appetizers:

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    Sonoma Goat Cheese Ravioli

    Tomato-Fennel Broth, crispy Mushrooms, Tiny Basil, Arbequina Organic Olive Oil --$16.00

    This dish deserves its spot as a popular menu staple here. It was very tasty, the goat cheese is perfect with the broth and then you get to soak up the broth with the bread.

    I also went with a seasonal appetizer:

    IMG_4515.JPG

    Braised Beef Short Rib Wontons
    Doenjang Miso-Cola-Onion Sauce, Crispy Garlic-Chili Oil, Radish, Pickled Lotus Root --$17.00

    These were also delicious and had a decent amount of spice from the chilis. It ended up getting too salty by the time I got to the third and fourth wonton, so I would recommend ordering this if you’re sharing with someone. I probably should have gone with something less salty like sushi or a salad since the ravioli was also on the salty side, but I really wanted to try this.

    I also had a glass of Terraces Chenin Blanc to accompany my meal.

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    It was a nice chenin blanc and a decent value at $12 based on the bottle price.


    I was too stuffed for dessert and it’s a good thing they had switched the crostata to apple because if it had been blueberry, I would have gotten it anyway. It was a great meal and I enjoyed the more relaxed (but still fantastic) service in the lounge. I can totally see doing the lounge thing here with the whole family, we eat dinner early anyway and it keeps us from having to make an ADR. It was also quieter so early in the evening, I noticed the noise level picked up by the time I was leaving.


    I took the monorail back to MK and managed to speed walk my way to Space Mountain before my FP window expired. It was a little jostly for my stuffed belly. I’m still glad I rode it because it had been years.

    MK was packed and I was glad to have some good FP because the lines were insane. I did Haunted Mansion with FP, killed some time waiting in line for the teacups before my Peter Pan FP. Pan was down hard and I found a terrible spot for viewing HEA because I didn’t want to get in the middle of the mob. My PP FP was turned into an anytime FP, which was great because I really wanted BTMRR instead. Then I managed to get in line for 7DMT a few minutes before closing and endured a longer wait than it should have been because the ride went down for at least 20 minutes. It was fun to ride at night though, glad I waited it out.

    The line for the Pop Century bus was INSANE when I made it out there, even though it was over an hour since closing time. It took up four regular bus stops and I noticed the AoA bus stop was only 1.5 times the normal size and got in that line instead. It ended up being the right choice, a double bus pulled up to the AoA stop and emptied out the queue while two buses pulled up to the Pop stop and barely made a dent.

    I walked through a deserted AoA resort and decided I had to find something to eat since it was late enough that I was starving again and didn’t want to go to bed hungry. After 11 pm, the only hot food available at Everything Pop is pizza or pasta. I got a slice of pepperoni out of desperation because nothing in the grab and go appealed to me. I took it back to my room and picked off the pepperoni and cheese to eat because the bottom crust was soaked in sauce and pretty terrible. Not a very satisfying meal, but at least I picked up one of these:

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    This was a very basic vanilla cake with vanilla frosting in the middle and I enjoyed it. The cake was moist and frosting tasted like real buttercream. I ate a few bites and saved the rest to go with my coffee the next morning.

    Then I crashed y’all. I usually am in bed by 9:30 and it was after midnight! It was okay though because I planned to sleep in the next morning if I could.
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2018
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  17. Hettie

    Hettie Mouseketeer

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    Thanks! I put way too much research into my food and drink, but I had limited time and all. :blush:

    It really was fun, I'm seriously hoping to make it an annual thing.

    That drink just didn't work for me. I've seen other positive reviews though, so maybe it's just me. I'd be interested to see what you think if you can get past my review in order to try it. :rotfl:

    There's never enough belly room for all the F&W booths, I had to limit myself to only items that were new to me since I wasn't sharing with anyone.

    Thanks for joining in! I loved the freedom, it was a nice break.
     
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  18. SweetSerenity

    SweetSerenity Thank you evenin' star!

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    The wontons look delicious! Sounds like something I would really enjoy.
     
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  19. Dis_Yoda

    Dis_Yoda DIS Veteran

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    Your appetizer meal looks lovely at California Grill! Those Short Rib Wontons sound tasty but I could see how it could be too much salt when you have that along with the goat cheese.

    You got a decent amount done for the evening at MK! Too bad your post park snack at Pop sucked!
     
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  20. earfulofmagic

    earfulofmagic cranking out magic and assembly line whimsy

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    Ahhhh your CA Grill meal looks awesome. The ravioli looks great, glad to hear the broth is tasty!

    Wow, those bus queues for Pop (and AoA to a lesser extent) sound awful. Good on you for hopping to the AoA bus, we have also enjoyed that tip some nights!

    Also have been on the Pop food court struggle bus with only pizza/pasta available, my sincere sympathies :( Glad you at least got the cute cake to end the night on a good note :)
     
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  21. TheOneWithTheTriplets

    TheOneWithTheTriplets DIS Veteran

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    Joining in. Your trip looks like tons of fun so far!
     
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