Epcot seems to be a constantly changing beast, especially when it comes to the food & beverage department. Mixed drinks, cocktails, beers, wines, and everything in-between is available across the park, most offerings remaining the same for years and years, though that’s not necessarily a bad thing. If China got rid of the Tipsy Ducks In Love drink, (mocha, black tea, coffee, Jim Beam) there would be riots. If something sells well, is themed to the pavilion, and most importantly: tastes good, that’s more than we can ask for at Epcot. During our adventures this past week we noticed new offerings at both Norway and Mexico.
Norway is in the cross hairs of change right now with Kringla Bakeri being down for refurbishment and all of the baked goodies being pushed out to the promenade in a Food & Wine style kiosk. You can read all about that here. With that cart providing the baked essentials this gave the typical Norway beer cart wiggle room to try new things, mainly Aass Pilsner and the more recent Redstone Mead.
The bottle has certainly seen better days; fortunately we’re getting it from a tap.
Redstone Mead – $13.25
We were a bit anxious about the price tag on this one. Mead is classified as a wine, and over thirteen dollars for a wine sounded a little absurd when we can spend that towards a full bottle. Regardless, we purchased and were pleasantly surprised about the large 12oz pour. The mead is very bubbly and heavily carbonated, poured directly from a keg. There’s a heavy tart and sour flavor upfront that lingers on the back tongue with a medicinal aftertaste. While it’s not a drink we would go out of our way for again, it’s certainly a unique option when traversing World Showcase. If you’ve never had mead before, we recommend splitting it with a group. With this heavy of a pour there’s plenty to go around.
We found a new margarita at Choza De Margarita, located in front of the Mexico pavilion. Previously they only had three signature margaritas, only recently adding in the Smokey Jalapeno.
Freshly prepared straight from the soda gun. At least it’s not from a jug, right? You can read-up on the specialty Negroni cocktail at La Cava Del Tequila and listen to us rant about quality decline here.
Smokey Jalapeno Margarita – $14.50
Yeah, don’t get this one. First, it’s extremely expensive, even for Epcot and Disney standards. Second, when you’re paying premium cocktail prices, you expect the cocktail to be made fresh, not dispensed from a soda gun behind the counter. We understand that this stand is extremely busy and they need to find efficiencies, but after tax the margarita is more than $15. Fortunately they don’t expect a tip out here, as compared to down inside La Cava. Third, this margarita is just not good. It’s very syrupy and has a lingering heat from the jalapeno flavor, but it tastes artificial despite the fresh slices on top. Between three of us we had difficulty taking a second sip of the drink and had an even more difficult time figuring out who would endure it through the end. We relatively enjoy the margaritas served at Epcot, so it’s a shame this one is artificial and syrupy to the point where you can’t drink it. Not recommended.