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REVIEW: Sweet and Spicy General Tso’s Chicken Shumai Joins Perfect ‘Panda’ Bubble Tea at The Painted Panda for the 2022 EPCOT International Festival of the Arts

“Enjoy decorative cuisine inspired by magnificent Chinese art” is how The Painted Panda is described for the EPCOT International Festival of the Arts. This year the food studio returns with a new dish along with a new alcoholic beverage.

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Menu for The Painted Panda at the EPCOT International Festival of the Arts

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Food:

  • 🆕 General Tso’s Chicken Shumai – $10.75
  • Char Siu Pork Bun – $8.50

Beverages:

  • “Panda” Bubble Tea: Classic Milk Tea with Black and White Boba (Non-Alcoholic) – $7.75
  • Jasmine Draft Beer – $5.00 for 6 oz. / $8.50 for 12 oz.
  • 🆕 Eastern Dynasty: Smirnoff Vodka ($11/bottle), Light Rum, Strawberry Syrup, Piña Colada Mix, Soda Water and Magic Boba Pearls – $12.50
  • Kung Fu Punch: Smirnoff Vodka ($11/bottle), Triple Sec, Mango Syrup, Orange Juice and Soda Water – $12.50
  • Sea Butterfly: Butterfly Pea Flower-infused Cocktail with Smirnoff Vodka ($11/bottle) Light Rum, Lychee Syrup and Magic Boba Pearls – $13.50

The Char Siu Pork Bun returns after a one-year absence, while the shumai filling is now General Tso’s chicken, replacing the spicy beef from 2020. Meanwhile, the Eastern Dynasty is a modified version of the Tang Dynasty, last seen at Lotus House during the 2021 EPCOT International Flower & Garden Festival, replacing tequila with vodka.

Photos of Menu Items from The Painted Panda at the EPCOT International Festival of the Arts

*NEW* General Tso’s Chicken Shumai – $10.75

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Tremendous! They’re sweet and spicy, and chock-full of chicken. A great value, absolutely worth trying.

Char Siu Pork Bun – $8.50

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This was a disappointing offering. The meat is dry, bland, and very overcooked. There was almost no sauce on the pork, which was sorely missed in this dish. It would have at least made it edible.

“Panda” Bubble Tea: Classic Milk Tea with Black and White Boba – $7.75

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This milk tea is fantastic. It’s sweet but not overly so, and the boba pearls provide a licorice-like flavor to counter the milk.

Jasmine Draft Beer – $5.00 for 6 oz. / $8.50 for 12 oz.

Epcot Food & Wine 2018 – China – Jasmine Draft Beer

Surprise! This one’s not brewed in China — or even made there! In fact, it’s brewed locally in Florida with a slapped-on Jasmine name, sort of like how local brewery Crooked Can made a unique draft for Morimoto Asia at Disney Springs. It’s a straightforward, unfiltered wheat beer with a small floral hint. Very drinkable, and we believe this is the only spot to actually get this beer.

*NEW* Eastern Dynasty: Smirnoff Vodka ($11/bottle), Light Rum, Strawberry Syrup, Piña Colada Mix, Soda Water and Magic Boba Pearls – $12.50

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This was beyond weird. We couldn’t taste any alcohol. Zero. None. It tasted like a fruity seltzer with boba, which isn’t necessarily bad. At this price, you would probably want to taste some alcohol. Hopefully, this dynasty doesn’t last too long.

Kung Fu Punch: Smirnoff Vodka ($11/bottle), Triple Sec, Mango Syrup, Orange Juice and Soda Water – $12.50

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This was a debated item. This beverage is similar to past festival drinks with familiar flavors from China. It’s a bright, semi-sweet, flavorful drink with a nice fruity flavor, though some in our crowd thought it tasted like peach. This was a crowd favorite.

*NEW* Sea Butterfly: Butterfly Pea Flower-infused Cocktail with Smirnoff Vodka ($11/bottle) Light Rum, Lychee Syrup and Magic Boba Pearls – $13.50

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If you have never had a butterfly pea flower… then you’re probably like the rest of us. But don’t be daunted! This floral-tasting cocktail is refreshing and not as overly complicated as the description makes it out to be. It’s clean, crisp, and hits the spot on a warm Florida day.

Location of The Painted Panda at the EPCOT International Food & Wine Festival

The Painted Panda is conveniently located directly across from the China Pavilion on World Showcase Promenade. You can find it at number 5 on the map below.

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What do you think of the new offerings? Let us know in the comments below!

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