Fabled Tables: Tales of Food and Wine, Volume 2

The Mexico marketplace stands astride the iconic pyramid of the Mexico pavilion.

Epcot's International Food & Wine Festival provides marketplaces for countries who are not only foreign to World Showcase, but those who have had a home at Epcot for years. That said, there are surprising tastes to be found at all. I actually took in the following three countries as a sort of appetizer run before lunch at Via Napoli. One of the best things about this Festival is that while having a taco, pork dumplings and a lettuce wrap before pizza might get me shunned from my Italian family, it was perfectly in keeping with the spirit of the Food & Wine Festival!


There is no shortage of restaurants representing Mexican cuisine at Epcot, with one counter service and two table service restaurants, including one (San Angel Inn) which I dined at during our recent trip. That said, the fare represented at their kiosk at the Food & Wine Festival still offered a nice change of pace from the various aforementioned options.

The Taco de Chilorio was a filling and flavorful taco. A flour tortilla (soft and unwrapped) is filled with slow-cooked, marinated pork topped with an avocado sauce and red onions. Though a tricky dish to navigate whilst parked off the World Showcase walkway without a table, the taco was one of the more surprising items that I sampled during my trip. (And that is coming from an area of America with no shortage of authentic Mexican cuisine!)

My wife and I also shared the Conga Fruit Punch, a non-alcoholic frozen drink containing pineapple and orange flavoring. This drink was a particularly successful refreshment on one of the more hotter days of our trip. As someone who has cut out a lot of artificially-sweetened drinks in his diet, I was particularly impressed with the moderate amount of sweetness in the drink. Definitely a nice departure from the usual beverages and certainly a good respite for those seeking a mixed drink without the alcohol.

Pork dumplings


I had originally planned on skipping China as I was mostly intent on sampling more exotic foods at the Festival. That said, I've never been one to pass up a good dumpling. Though, they're calling it by the more trending name, the Pork pot sticker. Though typically an appetizer, two pork dumplings are actually a pretty hearty dish. These were very tasty and an accessible treat for most people.

South Korea's Lettuce Wrap with Roasted Pork and Kimchi Slaw


South Korea is one of the debuts at this year's Food and Wine Festival. Of course, it was my first Festival so every kiosk was making its debut with me. I can happily report that it is nevertheless a great addition. Having had my fair share of ribs, short or otherwise, I skipped the tempting Barbecue Short Rib and went for the Lettuce Wraps with Roast Pork and Kimchi Slaw. If you are a connoisseur of well-cooked pork, I highly recommend this dish. For the uninitiated, Kimchi is a sort of pickled vegetable slaw. It's an incredibly popular Korean recipe and their most common side-dish. Fret not, while tasty and exotic, it's not a flavor that will turn off those easy scared by far off lands! (Though I do recommend you really try to situation yourself at a table for this dish as it's a tough one to tackle on the go.) This is another hearty and eclectic dish, with a subtle spicy kick.

And that's a Wrap!