Planning a trip to the 2019 Epcot Food and Wine Festival at Disney World? This guide has everything from the best menu items, dates, the 2019 concerts, and more! The International Food & Wine Festival is one of the most popular events at Disney World and for good reason. Use these insider tips and tricks to make the most of your visit whether you visit once or visit once a week!
This post contains affiliate links. If you purchase via one of my links, I may receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. Disney provided me with a park ticket + $50 dining gift card for this post – but the majority of the food was purchased with money out of my own pocket, so I could give you all the details!
Epcot Food and Wine Festival
Last week I went to the Permission to Hustle Disney retreat and as part of the retreat (and for a few hours before it started), we checked out Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party (so fun!) and the 2019 International Food and Wine Festival at Epcot! And I’ve got all of the info that you need to know about this year’s festival including dates, tickets, concerts, and more.
And if you want to know what to eat, I wrote an entire post all about the best food at the Epcot Food and Wine Festival – you can find that here!
To make it easier to navigate this crazy long post, I’ve put together a menu here to help you click around. Just click on the topic you’re looking for to be taken directly to that topic. And when you’re done with the topic, click the “Return to Menu” button at the bottom of the section to hop back up here. Hope it makes it a bit easier than having to scroll up and down!
Food and Wine Festival Table of Contents
- Festival Info – Dates and Hours
- Festival Costs
- Annual Passholder Perks
- Eat to the Beat Concerts
- Festival with Kids
- Cheese Tour
- Tips for Your Visit
- Best Food List
- Festival FAQs
Epcot Food and Wine Festival 2019 Dates
The International Food and Wine Festival is being held at Epcot from August 29 to November 23rd, a record breaking 87 days! This is the longest festival ever giving you plenty of time to see, do, and eat all the things!
Epcot hours change regularly so if you want to go into the park before the actual food kiosks open, check the Disney World website for Epcot hours. Food kiosks technically open at 11AM throughout the park, but they were open closer to 10:30 on opening day. If you’re in the park early, it’s worth seeing if anything is open before 11AM. If not, head to the rides!
Epcot Food and Wine Festival Costs
I’m putting this first because it’s important. While you can wander around Epcot and look at things and take advantage of the Eat to the Beat Concert Series, the food and drinks are NOT free.
I had a woman in line in front of me at one of the kiosks who walked up to the cast member and was bewildered that she had to pay for things. She thought they were just giving out free samples to everyone at all of the kiosks.
That cast member put it best and said, “When was anything at Disney free?”
So if you’re planning to go to the Epcot Food and Wine Festival – bring your wallet, Magicband, or little fancy Epcot Food and Wine Festival gift card because the food and drinks are not free. They range anywhere from $5-10 a piece, which adds up quickly.
Tip: If you want to try a lot of things, I recommend getting a group like I did and ordering one of each and each taking a taste. It’s a great way to save money while still getting to sample everything.
If you’re using a Disney Dining plan, you can use a snack credit to purchase any of the food items from the marketplace kiosks.
One other note. In order to enjoy the Epcot Food and Wine Festival, you must have a valid Disney World Ticket – either a regular ticket or a park-hopper. I recommend purchasing tickets through Get Away Today for the best deals!
Or if you want to go just in the afternoon, Disney is now offering a mid-day magic ticket that allows you to get into the parks after noon or a discounted price. This is only available in 2-day, 3-day, and 4-day options, but it’s a big savings for anyone who doesn’t want to get up bright and early.
I still recommend doing rope drop to make the most of one day at Disney World, but I’m guessing if you’re doing just one day, you’re probably not spending it on the Food and Wine Festival.
Food and Wine Festival Annual Passholder Perks
Every year the Disney Food and Wine Festival has a number of perks just for annual passholders. I’m a Walt Disney World annual passholder, so I was able to check out the perks!
This year they’re offering two different magnets – a Chef Minnie one for visiting between August 29 to October 14 and a Chef Remy magnet for visiting between October 15 to November 23rd.
They’re also offering up a set of complimentary Food & Wine Festival coasters for passholders who visits the festival four times. I asked to confirm – this means four different days. You can’t viist the festival once in the morning and once in the evening like I did and have it count twice.
Some other passholder perks include:
- Access to passholder exclusive festival merchandise (tip – shop at Mouse Gear or Port of Entry and use your 20% off)
- 10% discount on Eat to the Beat Dining Package
- Disney Gift Card Deal – when you buy the Festival $100 gift card (available at Mouse Gear, Disney Traders, Port of Entry, and Bridge Kiosk), you’ll get a $10 digital bonus to spend at select table-service restaurants in Epcot
I wish they would offer a Sip and Savor pass that provides discounted food and drinks from the festival like they do at the Disneyland Food and Wine Festival. That was one of my favorite parts!
Epcot Food and Wine Festival 2019 Entertainment
I mentioned it before but the Food and Wine Festival is one of, if not the, more popular Epcot festivals.
- International Food Tour across Epcot
- Culinary demonstrations
- Cooking classes where you can learn to make things like rice balls, homemade cheese, and more
- Sunday brunch with celebrity chefs such as Jamie Deen, Carla Hall, Robert Irvine, and Cat Cora
You can find more information on these on the Disney World website as well. These do sell out, so I recommend booking them in advance.
Epcot Concerts: Eat to the Beat
Another cool free thing you can do during the festival is check out the daily Eat to the Beat Concert Series where popular artists perform in the American Garden theater. Each artist performs three shows a day at 6:30PM, 7:45PM, and 9PM.
We saw Plain White T’s while we were there, and they were fantastic. The set was short, about 30 minutes, but they sang Hey There Delilah and that’s really all that matters. There are a lot of people on the lineup of concerts that I don’t personally know, so I was excited to see a band I really like!
Tip: There were people lining up for the next set when we left the first one, but there were empty seats in our set so not sure how necessary that is unless you really want a great seat.
Here’s this year’s schedule for the Epcot Food and Wine Festival concerts. I’ve added an * if it’s a new artist to the Eat to the Beat Concert series!
- August 29-31: Plain White T’s
- September 1-2: Sawyer Brown*
- September 3-4: MercyMe
- Septemer 5-6: Grace Kelly*
- September 7-8: Zach Williams*
- September 9-10: Lauren Daigle*
- September 11-12: Jimmie Allen*
- September 13-15: Tiffany
- September 16-17: Smashmouth
- September 18-19: Everclear
- September 20-22: STARSHIP featuring Mickey Thomas
- September 23-24: Postmodern Jukebox
- September 25-26: Blue October (kind of feels like I should be there for this one since it’s my birthday and my wedding song is by Blue October!)
- September 27-29: Mark Wills
- September 30-October 2: Sugar Ray
- October 3-4: Taylor Dayne
- October 5-6: India*
- October 7-9: 98 degrees
- October 10-11: Boyce Avenue*
- October 12-13: Southern Avenue*
- October 14-15: Kenny G
- October 16-17: 38 Special
- October 18-20: Baha Men
- October 21-22: Billy Ocean
- October 23-25: Sheila E
- October 26-27: High Valley
- October 28-30: Hanson
- October 31-November1: Sheena Easton
- November 2-3: Kris Allen*
- November 4-6: Boyz II Men
- November 7-8: The Hooters
- November 9-11: Big Bad Voodoo Daddy
- November 12-14: Joey Fatone and Friends*
- November 15-16: BBMak*
- November 17-18: Spanish Harlem Orchestra*
- November 19: DCappela*
Epcot Food and Wine Kid Friendly-Activities
The International Food and Wine Festival isn’t just for adults! Disney has made sure to include a couple of kid specific activities to keep the fun family-friendly!
Similar to the scavenger hunt at the Epcot Flower and Garden festival in the spring, they’re doing a Chef Remy themed scavenger hunt for kids called “Remy’s Ratatouille Hide & Squeak Scavenger Hunt.” Search the park to find the locations on the map then turn the maps in for a surprise. We did the flower and garden one in the spring with my 6-year-old, and he absolutely loved it!
Tip: You don’t have to actually find all the locations, you can turn the map in blank and they’ll still give you the prize. Just in case you all get hot and tired and want to leave early without finding everything.
The maps cost $6.99 and come with a map and stickers to put on the map as you find the scavenger hunt. It’s a fun way to keep kids entertained as you’re eating the not as kid-friendly food.
They’re also hosting a Disney du Jour Dance Party just for the kids that will feature DJ music every day and guest performances from Radio Disney artists on Fridays and Saturdays. Here’s the lineup for the special guests artists.
- August 30-31: Meg Donnelly (With U and Disney Channel’s Zombies)
- September 6-7: SmithField (We Make Our Own)
- September 13-14: Jenna Raine (A Letter to Me)
- September 20-21: Gabby Barrett (I Hope, American Idol)
- September 27-28: Isabella Nicole (Headphones)
- October 4-5: Avenue Beat (Delight)
- October 11-12: Sky Katz (Like This, Raven’s Home)
- October 18-19: JAGMAC (Like A Band)
- November 1-2: AJ Mitchell (All My Friends)
- November 8-9: Kylie Cantrall (That’s What I’m Talking Bout, Gabby Duran & The Unsittables)
- November 15-16: Erin Bowman (Good Time Good Life)
- November 22-23: Tegan Marie (Horses)
Here are some other activities kids will love!
- Candy Sushi making at the Land Pavilion every day from 3:30-5:30PM ($10 fee)
- Jump and play at the Family Play Zone
- Chocolate experience – a place to check out all things chocolate
- Checking out any of the kid-friendly Food and Wine Festival best food list
Food and Wine Festival Cheese Tour
Okay so it’s not actually a cheese tour but this year if you purchase five of these speciality cheese items at festival marketplace booths, you get a free complimentary cheesecake from Shimmering Sips as part of what Disney is calling Emile’s Fromage Montage.
And if you don’t want to try all five, no problem. You just have to try five total, so you could get two of your favorites instead of one you may not be interested in.
Make sure you give the cast member your Food and Wine Festival passport so they can stamp the back. You’ll need five stamps to turn the passport in for your complimentary cheesecake.
Here are the five cheese options you can get stamps for.
- Impossible Cottage Pie from Earth Eats
- Black Pepper Boursin Souffle from The cheese Studio
- Schinkennudeln from Germany
- Warm Raclette Swiss Cheese from The Alps
- Pao de Queijo from Brazil
Tip: It’s a fun idea and if you’re going to try all of these cheese items anyway, I say go for it because it’s free cheesecake. But if you’re not planning to try all of these items, I say skip the challenge – the cheesecake is okay but not great. I’d go with one of the other cheesecakes I recommend instead and save your money, especially since out of the five items on the cheese formage – I really only enjoyed two of them.
Tips for Your Food and Wine Festival Visit
These are just a couple of tricks we picked up during our two-day adventure to make your festival visit even better!
If you’re going early when things first open, get there before 11AM and walk toward the back of the park (or come in the International Gateway entrance). All of the booths at the very front had really long lines early because people just stopped at the closest booth they could find. Lines were much shorter further from the entrance to the park.
Look through the menu, or even better this post with my Food and Wine festival food reviews, the day before so you can make a plan. You’ll save time having to read the small signs by each of the booths if you know what you really want to try.
If you see a short line at a booth you want to try, take advantage of it. You never know when that line will be long again! There were times that I’d see a line with 1 person and then two minutes later it’d be up to 10 people.
Save the other items from this best Disney World food list for another day. You can get those next time you visit Epcot when the festival isn’t going on.
Pick up a Food and Wine Festival plate that holds both your snacks and your drink – so much easier than trying to hold it all in your hands as you walk around the world!
If you’re visiting with multiple people and want to try food at multiple booths, split lines. Have one person stand in on line and the other person stand in the other line and order for each other. That way you don’t both have to stand in line twice, I mean unless you want to of course!
If you’re planning to drink anything, think twice before renting a car at Disney World or at least before bringing your rental car to Epcot. If you’re going to drink, plan on taking Disney’s free transportation home.
Don’t forget to check out the festival exclusive merchandise. It’s only around during the festival and each year it’s something different. If you collect Disney items like so many of my friends, this is a great time to grab some cute stuff.
Share items so you can try more without having to buy everything yourself. You can buy another one later if it’s that good you want your own!
Know what you want before you get to the cast member to order and have your credit card, gift card, or magic band ready to go. It’ll make things easier on everyone and who knows you might just get to go ahead of people in line because you’ll get through the line much faster.
Save money on tickets by purchasing through Get Away Today and use that money to enjoy more of the food and drink offerings!
Dietary Restrictions or Allergies at the Festival
If someone in your group has allergies, check the Food and Wine Festival tasting passport. There are little icons that indicate ones that are good for vegetarian, gluten/wheat-friendly, and even kid-approved.
If you have an allergy to a food, ask the cast member if you’re unsure whether you can have something or not. They can ask the chefs inside the kiosk if it’s a preference and look inside a book with all the ingredients if it’s an allergy. If you’re unsure, ask. Better safe than sorry.
While some of the food items can be customized for allergies like not putting whipped cream on top of a juice, it seems like most things are at least somewhat pre-assembled, which would make it harder to customize.
I can’t eat onions and found that a lot of the items had onions but in some cases, they were able to leave them off for me or my husband just tried that food instead. It’s definitely worth asking! You don’t want to miss out on all of this goodness!
Epcot Food and Wine Festival 2019 Food Guide
Okay, now here’s what you’ve all probably been waiting for – what to eat and drink at the Epcot Food and Wine Festival! I actually explored the Food and Wine Festival two different times. Once with my husband (he ate all the onion things), and once with a group of my blogging girlfriends.
We ate our way through 90% of the offerings around the park. That’s a lot of eating in one day, but we did it just for you!
Click here to get to my review of all of the food items we tried along with a printable checklist of the best things to get and a “this, not that” list for types of food that show up across the park (e.g., this cheesecake, not that one).
Epcot Food and Wine Festival 2019 FAQs
Since I tend to get the same questions over and over again, even though they’re included in the post above, I thought it might be helpful to create a little section for the most frequently asked questions about the Disney Food and Wine Festival.
If you have more questions, leave me a comment on this post, and I’ll update this FAQs section with more questions!
Is the Food and Wine Festival free?
No. You need a park ticket to get into the Epcot Food and Wine Festival, all of the booths cost money, and most of the special activities have an additional fee (and some require reservations). The Eat to the Beat Concert series is free with a valid park admission.
When you enter the park make sure to pick up your festival passport so you can keep track of all the countries you’ve visited. The passport + passport stickers inside are included with admission and a fun addition to the festival!
Do I need a special ticket for the Epcot Food and Wine Festival?
No, unlike Disney After Hours, you don’t need a special ticket. A regular park ticket, a mid-day (after noon) ticket, a park hopper, or an annual pass will all work just fine to get you into the park!
How much is the Food and Wine Festival?
The food at the global marketplace booths cost anywhere from $4 for the Fruit & Nut Energy Snack at Active Eats to $10 for the caramel apple popcorn at the Appleseed Orchard (it comes in a collectible apple).
The drinks range anywhere from $4.00 for the non-alcoholic frozen apple pie at the Appleseed Orchard to $32 for the Dom Pérignon Brut Champagne at Shimmering Sips.
You can get prices for all the menu items in one place here.
Can you use Disney dining plan for the Epcot Food and Wine Festival?
Yes, you can use Disney Dining Plan snack credits for food items at the Food and Wine Festival. I also read somewhere that you can use quick service credits for 2-3 items, but I’d double-check with a cast member to see if that’s the case before assuming you can.
How crowded is Epcot during the Food and Wine Festival?
The crowds at Epcot during Food and Wine Festival are totally dependent on when you go. If you can go on a weekday in September, you may find the park to be fairly empty. Go on a weekend in late October during peak Halloween time and it may be more crowded.
And I’d do your best to skip the Food and Wine Festival during the Wine & Dine race weekend (November 1-4, 2019) if you’re not running. It’s bound to be more crowded then! You can check out all of the major special events happening here. If you have a choice, I’d skip one of these dates because the parks in general will just be more crowded.
What are the best things to eat at the Food and Wine Festival?
I’m so glad you asked! Here’s an entire post dedicated to the food at the Epcot Food and Wine Festival for 2019. We tried almost everything and are giving you our honest opinions on things to try, things to skip, and which ones are good but not worth the high price.
You can also watch the video in this post to get a quick glimpse at all the food!
More Tips for Visiting Disney World:
- Disney shirts to make for your next trip
- Best Disney World restaurants
- Disney After Hours tips and tricks
- Ultimate guide to Disney character dining
- Best Disney World food
- Disneybounding outfit ideas
- Changes coming to Epcot in 2020 and beyond
- Disneyland food and wine festival guide
- Car rental at Disney World – should you do it or not?
Disney Inspired Ideas for Your Next Trip:
- Disney movies 2018 to watch before your visit
- Frozen games for kids
- Car 3 games for the car trip
- Disney trivia game (with free printables!)
- Disney onesies for babies
- Disney matching games for adults
- Disney Halloween decorations