It’s the 🎶most wonderful time of the year 🎶… EPCOT’s Food and Wine Festival! Foodies come from all over the globe each year to experience new creations and festival favorites alike, and 2022 won’t disappoint—with plenty of tasty ways to pair food and drinks at EPCOT.
EPCOT boasts 31 booths this year that offer their own unique assortment of savory bites, sweet treats, and boozy beverages. That means that not only are there over 150 individual items to try but thousands of possible combinations!
How to Pair Drinks at EPCOT
For those who aren’t brew masters, mixologists, or sommeliers, pairing can be an intimidating world. Two things can be delicious on their own, but pairing the wrong items (think Brew-Wing’s sticky peanut sauce and grape gel wings with Australia’s cabernet sauvignon) could be a gag-worthy mistake.
On the other hand, a great pairing can elevate a favorite dish to the next level, bringing out flavors you didn’t know were hidden from your palette.
Want to unlock some foodie secrets? Keep reading to get the skinny on our favorite pairings from this year’s menu.
1. Bush Berry Shrimp + Yalumba ‘Y’ Viognier
First up, we have the Grilled Sweet-and-Spicy Bush Berry Shrimp ($6.50) and Yalumba ‘Y’ Viognier ($6.00) from the Australia booth.
For those who are unfamiliar, viognier is a white wine that typically offers sweet, soft, floral notes carried by stone fruit flavors such as apricot and peach.
The shrimp are served atop a bed of pepper, onion, snap peas, and pineapple that offers an element of juicy freshness while the sauce coats the grilled shrimp in sweet heat.
Yalumba’s viognier pairs so well with this dish because it actually offers a tropical flavor reminiscent of mango along with a hint of spicy ginger. This profile of tropical juices and fresh spiciness compliments the dish perfectly.
2. Taco al Pastor + Mexican Craft Beer
Alright, this one is pretty obvious. Who doesn’t love tacos with a cold beer? The Mexico booth never disappoints and their winning streak continues with 2022’s all-new Taco al Pastor ($7.50).
Seared pork belly pastor, chipotle black beans, pineapple, chives, and pickled onion rest on top of a soft yet crispy corn tortilla to make a mean taco that will leave you contemplating the dance of flavor that unfolds on your palette.
The complexity of these flavors is perhaps best paired with the simplicity of the Tulum Artisanal Lager ($5.00 6oz/ $10.00 12oz) made with Mexican Caribbean seawater! Citrus notes reveal themselves among the light flavor of the Cerveza, but won’t overpower the Taco al Pastor. This tasty brew is easy to pair with a lot of dishes, making it one of the most versatile drinks at EPCOT Food and Wine.
3. Filet Mignon with Truffle Butter + Cabernet-Merlot
Migrate over to the Canada booth where you’ll find a Food and Wine crowd pleaser: Wild Mushroom Beef FIlet Mignon ($9.25), served with truffle-butter sauce (drool). But what’s better than a filet mignon? Filet mignon with a glass of full-bodied red wine, of course!
Take the filet mignon from great to excellent with a glass of Château des Charmes Estate Cabernet-Merlot ($7.00). This Bordeaux red blend is bursting with flavors of sweet raspberry and tart cranberry while offering a soft tannin that opens your tastebuds to the juicy truffle-butter-soaked steak.
Even those who steer clear of red wines should give this pairing a spin!
4. Banh Mi Bao + Mango Margarita
Festival purists may say that mixing-and-matching items from different booths is taboo – we call it innovative. We might be breaking the rules with this one, but it is oh-so worth it!
Snag a “It Takes Two to Mango” Margarita ($12.00) from the Mexico booth and take a shortcut through the Odyssey building to get to the Flavors From Fire booth where you can grab their all-new Banh Mi Bao ($5.75).
The pillowy soft Banh-Mi Bao debuted for the first time this year, stuffed with char-grilled Asian skirt steak, chicken liver aioli, pickled vegetables, and fresh cilantro.
Not seeing the vision? When you look closer at the marg’s ingredients, you’ll note that the smoky mezcal will highlight the savory and sweet smokiness of the steak while the ancho chile lime juice compliments the pickled veggies and cilantro.
5. Feijoada + Caipirinha
If you’re looking for a pairing that will fill your belly and keep you cool, trek on over to the Brazil booth, located between the France and Morocco Pavilions.
Caipirinha ($11.00) is a beautifully simple cocktail that is considered a classic in Brazilian culture. Lime juice, sugar, and a liquor called cachaça are the three simple ingredients that comprise this frozen cocktail. While it is yummy, I found myself wanting more from the drink at this price point. Cue the feijoada!
This year, the booth is offering an all-new dish called “feijoada,” ($6.25) a Brazilian comfort food typically shared with friends and family after a long week. The dish consists of crispy yet tender chunks of pork belly drizzled with brazil nut pesto atop a mound of white rice and black beans. Feijoada is packed with rich and succulent flavor.
When sipping the caipirinha between bites of feijoada, the frozen cocktail became the perfect refreshing treat and really brought the flavors of the pork belly and pesto to life. On my next day in the Florida heat, I’ll be reaching for this duo!
Drinks at EPCOT: Food and Wine Pairings
These matches are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the combinations you can create at EPCOT’s 2022 Food and Wine Festival.
But these are just a few of the drinks at EPCOT that we tried and loved—and are only available during the festival. Check out the other EPCOT Food and Wine booths to find your regional favorite:
- Earth Eats
- Shimmering Sips
- Refreshment Port
- Appleseed Orchard
- Tangierine Cafe
- Hops & Barley
- The Alps
- Refreshment Outpost
- Swanky Saucy Swine
- Fry Basket
- Flavors from Fire
With a world of flavor at your fingertips, you won’t want to miss a beat. Stay up to date on all things fest related on the WDW Magazine blog.