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REVIEW: The Almond Orchard – 2017 Epcot Food and Wine Festival

The Almond Orchard booth is brand NEW for the 2017 Epcot Food and Wine Festival!  Sounds like it’s going to focus on, you guessed it, almonds. Some of the offerings are a Cauliflower Risotto, Fire-roasted Tomato Hummus, Banana Almond Soft-serve Sundae for dessert and there’s also a Strawberry smoothie made from almond milk for dessert.  I cant’s wait to dive in so let’s see what it’s like in my Almond Orchard Review: 2017 Epcot Food and Wine Festival….

Almond Orchard Booth:

You’ll find The Almond Orchard as soon as you enter World Showcase from Future World by turning to the right.  It’s one of the first couple marketplaces there so you can’t miss it.  It’s also beautifully decorated too, full of almond blossoms…

Almond Orchard Review 2017 Epcot Food and Wine Booth

The Almond Orchard Booth

 

The Almond Orchard Menu:

Almond Orchard Review 2017 Epcot Food and Wine menu

The Almond Orchard Menu

Food:

  • Cauliflower Risotto with Pulled Chicken, Artichokes, Spinach and Parmesan Cheese and Aged Balsamic – $4.75, DDP Snack Credit
  • Fire-roasted Tomato Hummus topped with Blue Diamond Salt & Vinegar Almonds and served with Blue Diamond Nut Thins – $5.25, DDP Snack Credit  *Ziggy Recommended
  • Banana Almond Soft-serve Sundae with Fresh Berries and Crunchy Chocolate Oats – $4.50, DDP Snack Credit

Beverages:

  • Veuve Clicquot Ponsardin “Yellow Label” Brut – $13.00
  • Dom Pérignon Brut – $32.00
  • Moët & Chandon Brut Rosé Imperial – $16.00
  • Strawberry Smoothie made with Blue Diamond Almond Breeze Almond milk (Non-Alcoholic) – $4.50, DDP Snack Credit

 

Almond Orchard Review 2017 Epcot Food and Wine

Fire-roasted Tomato Hummus and Cauliflower Risotto

 

Menu Review:

So the Cauliflower Risotto was one of the new things I was most looking forward to trying this year.  I live in Italy a lot of the year and close to Milan risotto is king.  You can find it a million ways and it’s always delicious.  I love all the ingredients: chicken, parmesan, balsamic, artichokes, so it’s sure to be a winner…or so I thought.  It sounds really good on paper but it just couldn’t quite pull it off.  First of all it was way too hard, almost broke a fork sticking it in.  The flavor was pretty decent, but it was also too watery.  Risotto should not be watery, it should be creamy.  I liked the artichokes that were in it, but it was just too nutty for me, and I expected more cauliflower taste.  Look the other way and don’t ask questions…

Almond Orchard Review 2017 Epcot Food and Wine Cauliflower Risotto

Cauliflower Risotto with Pulled Chicken, Artichokes, Spinach and Parmesan Cheese and Aged Balsamic

After that we tried the Fire-roasted Tomato Hummus which was an improvement over the risotto.  If you are a hummus person you will like this a lot.  It has a nice fresh taste, you can really taste the garlic and parsley in it, while not being too much.  Very smooth and creamy.  And those roasted tomatoes are outstanding combined in there!  I’m not sure I like the fact it was so cold, I know hummus is often served cold, I guess I like it a little closer to room temperature, and this was not, but not a deal breaker for me.  The crisps are pretty good, very light, but they didn’t give us enough of them (a theme throughout the Food and Wine Festival when it came to dipping stuff).

Almond Orchard Review 2017 Epcot Food and Wine Festival Tomato Hummus

Fire-roasted Tomato Hummus topped with Blue Diamond Salt & Vinegar Almonds and served with Blue Diamond Nut Thins

The Banana Sundae I unfortunately didn’t try as I hate bananas…yeah I think I overdosed on them as a toddler and now I can’t stand the taste of them so I wasn’t able to get a first-hand report for you.  If it’s any help the others who did have it said it was very good, the banana being nice and creamy mixed throughout, the chocolate oats offering a great crunch, and the addition of the berry compote was a perfect compliment.  I’m gonna have to take their word on it 😉

Lastly, I wanted to try one of the drinks, but since there was not a fat chance I was getting a $32.00 glass of Dom Pérignon, I decided to go with the Strawberry Smoothie instead!  I wasn’t really expecting much as I’m not the kind of guy you’ll find drinking almond milk very often (ever, that is), but I was pleasantly surprised.  Maybe it was because it was 90+ degrees and my shoes were starting to melt to the sidewalk, but it was pretty refreshing, it had like a strawberry and cream action going on which I liked a lot.  Nothing crazy here but solid.  I guess I’ll be going to the nearest Whole Foods and picking up some almond milk when I’m done writing this article.. ?

Almond Orchard Review 2017 Epcot Food and Wine Festival Strawberry Smoothie

Strawberry Smoothie made with Blue Diamond Almond Breeze Almond milk (Non-Alcoholic)

 

Booth Summary and Grade:

Overall The Almond Orchard booth was a little disappointing. to me.  The Cauliflower Risotto was one of my most anticipated dishes and it let me down big time.  Hummus was good, I’d have that again, and the smoothie was solid.  Obviously no-one is going to the Food and Wine Festival for Dom Pérignon, especially not me.  Would have liked to see the sundae with the option of getting it without banana, as to look at it it did look good.  If you are a hummus fan then make a stop, otherwise keep walking till next year.

If you have to get just one thing: Fire-roasted Tomato Hummus

Grade:  6.5

Take a look at all of my 2017 Epcot Food and Wine articles.  I have a 2017 Epcot Food and Wine Info Guide with a complete Index of the Food and Wine Menus, The Top NEW Items for 2017, Top Food and Wine Booths and more…I want you to be able to have the best info on the Festival so you have a great time and don’t waste your time!

Your Thoughts:

I want to know what you think of my Almond Orchard Review 2017 Epcot Food and Wine Festival.  What was your favorite item?  Did you get the Sundae?  Let us know in the comments section below!

If you enjoyed this article, as always I appreciate it if you’d share it with others via social media.  I work hard at making this website into a useful resource for you and your family to plan your visit to Walt Disney World, and I hope it can help you! Thanks 🙂

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Diane Schweig

Wednesday 8th of November 2017

I would like the recipe for the fire roasted tomato humus, it was outstanding, we enjoyed it with our drinks. I’m a vacation club member for 25 years we have come to the fest since I think 2008. It’s become a tradition! Tks

Ziggy

Thursday 9th of November 2017

Wow, 25 years in the DVC is awesome...I wish my parents bought in back then..we'd have save tons of money over the years for sure! I'm glad you liked the hummus, I thought it was quite good even though I'm not a big hummus guy!