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Walt Disney World Epcot Discussion Thread

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Wow! The new test track looks great! I've never ridden the old one but comparing the videos of the old and new versions, the new one sure looks like an improvement, especially on the indoor parts. Thanks for the video and all the pics.

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Thank you for this comprehensive and emotional characterization from the media-day, Robb!

Very interesting and future-like/futuristic, for me as a middle-european or "from good ol' Europe", to see this (future-) "stuff"...


Very good videos and pictures like always from you... thanks, you Three!

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“Monsieur Paul restaurant introduces the culture and the authentic taste of French cuisine that Chef Paul Bocuse introduced to the world,” says Jerome Bocuse, son of the famous French chef and president and owner of the company that runs the new restaurant re-opening December 11 in the France Pavilion at Epcot World Showcase.

Upscale but less formal than the former Bistro de Paris, the new decor captures classic French architecture with fresh colors and a touch of modernism. “The newly renovated restaurant inherits the air of hospitality of my father’s restaurant as each staff member goes above and beyond to offer the warmest, most inviting service possible,” says Jerome.


Monsieur Paul will be decorated with mementoes of Chef Paul Bocuse’s extraordinary culinary honors – he achieved three Michelin stars for 48 straight years at his famous Lyon restaurant, Auberge du Pont de Collonges. The Bocuse family has an important place in the culinary world, most recently with Paul Bocuse being named “Chef of the Century” by The Culinary Institute of America. “Monsieur Paul” was the name cooks used in the 1950s to address a young Paul Bocuse in the kitchen to differentiate him from his father George Bocuse, also an established chef—and the nickname has stuck throughout Paul’s life.


“My father, Paul Bocuse, first opened Les Chefs de France here at Epcot in 1982 with Chefs Gaston Lenôtre and Roger Vergé – it was the first and only Bocuse-affiliated restaurant in America,” says Bocuse. “Things have now come full circle, with me having the opportunity to open a restaurant here bearing my father’s name – I’ve seen the dining scene change and we are evolving with it.”


The aim is not to replicate the dishes from the Lyon restaurant, but to serve both classics and interpretations of them in a setting that’s more contemporary.

The white linen tablecloths and tuxes for servers are gone, creating an upscale-but-less-formal approach to French dining. Crisp white shirts, purple ties and long black aprons give the servers an “elegant-but-approachable look,” says Bocuse.


The new menu, created by Chef Francesco Santin who worked with Chef Bocuse in his restaurant in Lyon for 15 years, is built on the Bocuse tradition of French classical cuisine with “the freshest ingredients, the perfect temperature and just the right seasoning,” says Jerome.


“Chef Santin brings invaluable experience from Lyon to the restaurant, including his knowledge of the classic dishes, techniques, and flavors of France,” says Bocuse. “ However, it is still important for us to showcase American ingredients.” For instance, a classic Bocuse fish entrée prepared in France with rouget (red mullet) is re-imagined at Monsieur Paul with red snapper from Florida.


Guests can expect dishes such as Soupe aux Truffles V.G.E. (black winter truffle and beef broth soup), Homard du Maine à L’Armoricaine, riz Pilaf (Maine lobster, vegetable brunoise, bisque, rice Pilaf) and Carré d’Agneau en croute d’herbes, pissaladière Niçoise, cassolette de flageolet (herb crusted rack of lamb Niçoise style tart with goat cheese, onions, arugula cassoulette of flageolet beans). For a sweet finish, Soufflé chaud au grand Marnier (warm Grand Marnier soufflé) and Entremet au trois chocolats (triple chocolate cake) are just two of the desserts.


“We want guests to experience authentic French cuisine – but they don’t have to dress up and spend a lot of time,” says Jerome. “We’ve thoughtfully adapted Monsieur Paul to our guests’ vacation experience. ”


Monsieur Paul will be open seven days a week for dinner beginning at 5:30 p.m. Reservations can be made by contacting 407-WDWDINE or online at http://disneyworld.disney.go.com/reservations/dining/.


Bon Appétit!





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Does anybody notice right after you go outside on Test Track there's a building with a black/yellow paint scheme, obviously because of the past theme of TT.


Is Disney going to repaint it to fit a futuristic theme or will it stay like that?


I know it's only a small detail, but Disney is supposed to pay attention to things like that...

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  • 3 weeks later...

^ its the backstage maintanance area for the cars i HIGHLY doubt it will get repainted. Also if anyone is in innoventions be sure to check out the brand new venue think by ibm. Its a small piece of the culture of old epcot resurected in a new flashy form! Its rich in information, has some fun games, and a very cool motion sensor wall! If you are in innoventions check it out!

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  • 2 weeks later...



What a treat! The big, new Les Halles Boulangerie & Patisserie at the France Pavilion opens each morning at 9 a.m. – ahead of the 11 a.m. opening of World Showcase – so you can sip a latte with a chocolate croissant to start the day . . . or a cappuccino with a chaussons au pomme (apple turnover) . . . or an espresso with an éclair. And that’s just a taste of the expansive new menu that offers classic French goodies all day long.


The new bakery is “at least 10 times” larger than the former sweet shop, says manager Eric Weistroffer. Located in the space adjacent to the France movie theater exit, Les Halles Boulangerie & Patisserie offers sweets, soups, sandwiches, salads and authentic French dishes such as quiche, Croque Monsieur (grilled ham and cheese) and pissaladiere, the pizza-like dish from the South of France, this version with tomatoes, olives and Gruyère.


The Lyonnaise salad is another classic, with frisee, bacon, eggs, croutons and light vinaigrette. Add pumpkin soup or lobster bisque for a satisfying meal. Plenty of choices are on the Disney Dining Plan.


You can imagine the wonderful aromas with French artisan bakers in the beautiful onstage bakery. Grab a seat in the courtyard and watch the world go by as you sip a Champagne and share a cheese plate and baguette. La vie est belle (life is beautiful)!





We’ll miss the burger, but now the lobster mac ‘n’ cheese is available for both lunch and dinner as popular Le Cellier Steakhouse at Epcot debuts an all-day menu beginning January 16.


It’s easy to just stick with starters like the Le Cellier chopped lobster salad, or dig into a bowl of the longtime favorite Cheddar Cheese Soup made with Moosehead beer. We make a meal of the indulgent poutine fries topped with Canadian Cheddar, and a seasonal salad (for winter, it’s greens with duck prosciutto, blue cheese, fig-almond cake and a soft-boiled egg).


But Canadian-raised beef is the sophisticated star of the show: from a grilled bone-in ribeye to a New York strip, you can’t go wrong with the beef. The buttery filet mignon with white truffle-butter sauce and wild mushroom risotto is the hands-down favorite of guests. For vegetarians, the seasonal menu includes winter squash ravioli with sage brown butter. And, year-round, you’ll find sustainable seafood creatively presented by Chef Al Youngman.


Pair with some of Canada’s best wines and beer from Quebec for a memorable vacation indulgence. For reservations, call 407-WDW-DINE. Le Cellier Steakhouse is two entitlements on the Disney Dining Plan.





They're ba-a-ack. Habit Heroes, an Epcot attraction that aims to help kids defeat unhealthy habits, will reopen today after undergoing a complete Imagineering makeover.


Following its debut last February, the attraction landed in big trouble when fat-acceptance proponents said its super-sized cartoon characters were cruel stereotypes and hurtful to larger-sized children.


By March 1, Disney had pulled the curtain, closing the exhibit and sending the Imagineers back to the drawing board.


Today, the only feature the sequel has in common with the first version is its name and location — inside Innoventions, the park's futuristic showcase of ideas. Beyond that, it was scrubbed.


"When the attraction had its soft opening last February, the creative team sought guest feedback," said Brent Strong, creative director for Walt Disney Imagineering, who oversaw the project.


And they got it.


"We're appalled to learn that Disney, a traditional hallmark of childhood happiness and joy, has fallen under the shadow of negativity and discrimination," came a scathing statement from the National Association to Advance Fat Acceptance, which triggered a nationwide reaction.


"Most negative habits were attached to really fat bodies," said Peggy Howell, spokeswoman for the fat-acceptance organization. "These pictures further the stigma against people of higher body weight."


Disney and project partner Florida Blue got the message.


"We found that some pieces were getting in the way of our story, which is that healthy living can make us all feel like super heroes," said Strong. "We had to try to tell that story in a different way."


Take Two


To create the Habit Heroes sequel, Imagineers gathered input from national experts in children's health, weight and nutrition, including an obesity expert from Stanford University and a nutritional scientist from Cornell University.


In Habit Heroes 2, a host takes guests — 12 at a time — through the 4,700-square-foot interactive attraction. In the first room of the 16-minute experience, "recruits" meet Director Jin and her agents Quench, Dynamo and Fuel.


Together, they tell recruits that they all need to blast the enemies: dehydration, inactivity and poor nutrition.


Missing in action are all original Habit Heroes, the buff action figures (Will Power and Callie Stenics) who fought chubby animated villains — including Lead Bottom and Snacker.


The heavy adolescent who starred in the first edition — as he evolved into a slimmer, fitter teen — also is gone.


In the kinder, more sensitive attraction, bad habits are no longer embodied in super-sized human forms, but have morphed into non-human cartoon symbols.


For instance, the Scorchers are animated flames that dry you out. The Sappers resemble life-like boulders that weigh you down and sap your energy. Blocker Bots are many-armed monsters that stand between you and healthier food choices.


Recruits fight back with water, activity, and fruits and vegetables in three simulation rooms.


In the first room, guests engage in motion-tracking technology that senses their movements as they extinguish bad habits. In the next room, visitors use blasters to defeat the enemies individually, then with the help of their neighbors. By the third interactive room, they are working as a team to defeat bad habits.


"The final message is that we all have to work together to save the world from these bad-habit monsters," said Strong.


Feeling heard


Howell is grateful for the revision.


"We really thank Disney and Epcot for listening to our concerns," she said. "We appreciate that they heard us and took the necessary steps to tailor the message for every person, not one segment of the population."


Pediatric obesity specialist Angel Fals, medical director for Florida Hospital's Healthy 100 Kids program, hasn't seen the attraction, but liked the new direction.


"I'm happy to hear the focus is on nutrition, activity and hydration," said Fals, who particularly likes the focus on making health a group effort.


"In dealing with weight management for kids, it's extremely important that families and social networks are involved."


Though the attraction initially had a childhood-obesity theme, that's gone, too.


"Rather than single out one population, this message reminds guests that everyone is responsible for health choices as individuals, within their families and finally in their communities," said Tony Jenkins, regional-market president for Florida Blue.


"I liked the first one. I like this one even more," he said.


The Belnick family, of Monroe, N.Y., were among a handful of guests who got a sneak preview Thursday, and had no idea of the hullaballoo.


Rather, daughter Kathryn Belnick, age 20, said her first reaction was, "I can't believe my parents are taking us here." After all, she and her sister hadn't come to the theme park for a health lesson.


But she was pleasantly surprised. "It got the message across in a very fun way. I liked it."


Not everyone comes away pondering the deeper meaning. Four-year-old Giovanni Dimarzio, of Celebration, just enjoyed the action. "I liked the part where we blasted the guy with the fire, and the rocky guy."

Edited by jedimaster1227
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The new bakery in France is amazing! I like it a lot better than the previous location. Definitely a lot bigger than before, and the food seems a lot better as well. The creme brûlée was absolutely restaurant quality. Where else can you get a restaurant quality creme brûlée at a counter service restaurant! Really amazing stuff.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I hadn't been following too much about this years upcoming Flower and Garden Festival, but it sounds like they're also basically doing a mini-Food & Wine to go with it!!!


Check out this article from the Orlando Sentinel:


Disney has revealed its full menu for its expanded food offerings during this year's Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival.


A dozen "Garden Marketplaces" will spring up around Epcot's World Showcase during the event, and they will spotlight food and drink inspired by gardens.


Here are menus and the locations, working counterclockwise around the lagoon, planned for the festival:


•Pineapple Promenade at World Showcase Promenade: Dole Whip; Dole Whip with spiced rum; pineapple upside-down cake; Dole pineapple fruit cup; frozen desert violet lemonade; cream stout beer.


•The Cottage: Savories, Trifles and Tea at United Kingdom pavilion: Potato, chive and cheddar cheese biscuit with smoked salmon tartare and sour cream; baked goat's brie with kumquat chutney; heirloom tomatoes with mozzarella, vinegar and basil; trifles (chocolate, berry, ginger and tea); hot and iced teas; Brut Rosé sparkling wine; Rose Blush lemonade.


•L'Orangerie at France: Ratatouille tarte with goat cheese; pate with baguette and cherry compote; peach charlotte; frozen cocktail; Chardonnay; Cabernet Sauvignon; Sparkling Muscat


•Taste of Marrakesh at Morocco: Spiced lamb kebab with couscous salad; harissa and lemon confit chicken drumettes with chermoula and cucumber salad; Moroccan sweet pancake; sparkling wine with pomegranate liqueur; white sangria; red wine; Moroccan beer; mint iced tea with peach


•Hanami at Japan: Frushi (fruit sushi — made with fresh fruit and coconut rice); grilled shrimp, salmon and crab stick over ginger rice; grilled vegetables with Japanese noodles and teriyaki on a bun; green tea flan; yuzu rita; fruit saki; sake; frozen Kirin Ichiban.


•The Smokehouse at American Adventure: Pulled pig slider with cole slaw; smoked beef brisket with collard greens and jalapeno cornbread; rocky road mousse brownie; red wine; craft beer; beer flight.


•Primavera Kitchen at Italy: Green asparagus and lobster with garden cocktail sauce; lasagna primavera; Limoncello-flavored panna cotta; Pinot Grigio; Chianti; Prosecco; white peach bellini; Strawberry Rossini; Italian Primavera Cocktail; Italian beers; Italian-beer flight.


•Bauernmarkt, near Germany: Savory bread pudding with spring peas and wild mushroom ragout; German meatloaf sandwich with sweet mustard and fried shallots; potato pancakes with apple sauce; Hugo – elderflower sparkling wine cocktail; German and domestic beers; beer flight.


•Lotus House in China: Beijing-style candied strawberries; spring pancake with grilled chicken and green apple; Taro-bacon puff pastry; bubble teas; fruit beverage cocktail, Chinese beer.


•Jardin de Fiestas in Mexico: Crab tostadas with chipotle aioli and salsa; pork tacos served over flour tortilla; guava flan; rosita margarita; organic tequila flight, Mexican beer.


•Florida Fresh at World Showcase Promenade: Watermelon salad with pickled red onions, baby arugula, feta cheese and balsamic reduction; shrimp and stone-ground grits with andouille sausage, Zellwood corn, tomatoes and cilantro; angel food cake; tomato wine; carrot wine; Florida beer; strawberry slush drink.


•Fruits by the Glass at World Showcase Plaza: Watermelon passion fruit cocktail; wild berry slush; blueberry beer; mango wine; blueberry wine; raspberry ale; Chardonnay; Pinot Noir.

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