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VIDEO: How to Make Pumpkin Twists from Disneyland Resort

posted on October 22nd, 2014 by Rachel Brent, Food & Beverage Marketing Communications Coordinator


Goblins and ghoulies from last Halloween … awaken the spirits with your pumpkin cuisine! Looking for a frightfully fun treat to serve at your Halloween party? Watch below as Chef Christina Orejel from Disneyland Resort demonstrates how to make Pumpkin Twists, a Halloween Time treat.

Pumpkin Twists
Available at Troubadour Tavern and Maurice’s Treats at Disneyland park, and Cozy Cone Motel at Disney California Adventure park.
Makes 6

1/3 cup brown sugar
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon plus 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice, divided
1 tablespoon instant pectin
1 cup pumpkin puree
3 (17.3-ounce) boxes (6 sheets) frozen puff pastry, thawed
1 egg
1 tablespoon milk
1/2 cup sanding sugar

  1. Combine brown sugar, granulated sugar, 1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice, and instant pectin in a medium bowl. Stir in pumpkin puree until well combined. Refrigerate until ready to use.
  2. Place one sheet of puff pastry onto a lightly floured, movable, flat surface, such as a lightweight cutting board. Lightly dust surface of pastry with flour and roll lightly just to smooth creases.
  3. Spread with 1/3 cup of pumpkin mixture, stopping 1/4-inch from edges.
  4. Roll a second sheet of puff pastry on a lightly floured surface to smooth creases; place on top of first sheet and press down gently. Repeat process two more times with remaining pastry sheets and remaining filling. Refrigerate filled pastry 15 minutes.
  5. Preheat oven to 400°F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a nonstick silicone mat.
  6. Working with one filled pastry at a time, cut into 1 1/2-inch strips.
  7. Place strips on baking sheet spacing about 1/2-inch apart. Carefully lift strips and twist each 3 times before laying down. (Leave remaining filled pastry in refrigerator until ready to bake.)
  8. Mix together coarse sugar and remaining 1 tablespoon pumpkin spice.
  9. Beat egg and milk together in a small bowl. Using a pastry brush, brush each twist with egg wash and evenly sprinkle evenly with coarse sugar mixture.
  10. Bake 22 to 24 minutes, or until puffed and golden brown. Cool on baking sheet 5 minutes, then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely. Repeat process two more times, cutting and baking one remaining filled pastry at a time.

Cook’s Notes: To make pumpkin pie spice at home, combine 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon, 2 teaspoons ground nutmeg, 2 teaspoons ground ginger, and 1 teaspoon ground allspice.

Sanding sugar is larger, polished grains of sugar – about four times larger than those in granulated sugar. Because the sugar crystal grains are large and reflect light, they give off a “sparkling” effect. The large-grained sugar won’t melt and disappear as it bakes, giving a nice crunch to dessert topping.

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Finish that Disney Parks Sign: A Stop At The Confectionery at Magic Kingdom Park

posted on October 22nd, 2014 by Jennifer Fickley-Baker, Social Media Manager


This week we’re taking a sweet stop at the Confectionery on Main Street, U.S.A. I love so many of the treats inside – from the specialty apples and Mickey crispy treats to my personal favorite, the chocolate-covered pineapple skewers.

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According to this sign, the Confectionery is the home of ___. Do you remember the missing words? If so, tell us in the comments section below. We’ll post the answer later today.

Read the rest of this entry »

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More Pumpkin Yum from Disneyland Resort

posted on October 21st, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


In case you can’t make it to Disneyland Resort to taste all the delectable pumpkin treats we mentioned in last week’s pumpkin cheesecake recipe post, here’s one more recipe we just had to share just in time for National Pumpkin Day (Oct. 26): hearty pumpkin muffins packed with the flavors of sweet golden raisins, nutmeg and cinnamon. A crunch of streusel on top makes them perfect with coffee to start the day.

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You could nosh on more Disneyland Resort pumpkin treats from morning ‘til night: pumpkin beignets (Café Orleans and Mint Julep Bar in Disneyland park); pumpkin twists (Troubadour Tavern and Maurice’s Treats at Disneyland park and Cozy Cone Motel at Disney California Adventure park); pumpkin pie (Plaza Inn and French Market Restaurant in Disneyland park, Flo’s V-8 Cafe at Disney California Adventure park); pumpkin cheesecake muffins (Market House in Disneyland park and Fiddler, Fifer & Practical Café at Disney California Adventure park), and pumpkin cheesecake (Jolly Holiday Bakery Café and French Market Restaurant in Disneyland park, Boardwalk Pizza & Pasta at Disney California Adventure park and White Water Snacks at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa). Beyond the bakery treats at various spots throughout the parks and resorts, there’s pumpkin spice latte at Starbucks and Boudin Bakery’s pumpkin-shaped sourdough at Pacific Wharf Café, Disney California Adventure park bread cart and Mortimer’s Market.

You’ll find these pumpkin muffins in Disneyland park at Jolly Holiday Bakery Café and the Cappuccino Cart in the Hub. At Disney California Adventure park, they’re at Schmoozies and Pacific Wharf Café. You can also find them at White Water Snacks at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa and Surfside Lounge at Disney’s Paradise Pier Hotel.

But if you can’t make it to Disneyland Resort, whip up a batch and enjoy – maximum flavor, minimum guilt.

Pumpkin Muffins
Makes 12 muffins

Muffin Recipe
1 cup cake flour
1 cup bread flour (may substitute all-purpose flour)
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
2 cups sugar
3 eggs
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 5-ounce can pumpkin purée
1 cup golden raisins

Streusel
2 tablespoons all purpose flour
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 tablespoons (packed) dark brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1 pinch salt
1 tablespoon cold unsalted butter

For muffins:

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F and line a muffin pan with paper liners. Set aside.
  2. Sift together cake flour, all-purpose flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and nutmeg into a large bowl. Set aside.
  3. Beat together sugar and eggs until pale yellow in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Blend in oil and pumpkin purée until mixture is smooth.
  4. Blend half of flour mixture into egg mixture until just combined. Scrape sides of bowl, then stir in raisins. Add remaining flour mixture to batter, mixing just until combined.
  5. Scoop batter into prepared muffin pan, filling about 3/4 full.

For streusel:

  1. Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl. Mash butter with a fork until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Sprinkle about 1 teaspoon streusel on each muffin.
  2. Bake 18 minutes, then lower oven temperature to 325°F and bake 5 minutes more or until golden brown.
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VIDEO: The Muppets Make ‘Swedish’ Shrimp Tacos at Walt Disney World Resort

posted on October 17th, 2014 by Rachel Brent, Food & Beverage Marketing Communications Coordinator


Hellu iferybudy, tudey zee Swedish Chef veell shoo yuoo—let’s try that again—Hello everybody, today the Swedish Chef will show you how to re-create Shrimp Tacos from Epcot International Food & Wine Festival at home. Don’t worry, we provide subtitles. Bork Bork Bork!

In case you couldn’t understand Swedish Chef, here is the recipe so you can make Shrimp Tacos at home:

Tacos de Camarones (Shrimp Tacos)
Makes 10 (6-inch) tacos

Chipotle Sauce

  • 2/3 cups mayonnaise
  • 7.5 ounce can chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, puréed

Shrimp Tempura

  • Vegetable oil for frying
  • 1 egg white
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon parsley, dried
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 pound large shrimp, peeled, deveined, about 30 to 35 shrimp

Shrimp Tacos

  • 10 (6-inch) flour tortillas
  • 3 cups shredded red cabbage
  • 3/4 cup favorite salsa verde

For chipotle sauce:

  1. Mix mayonnaise and puréed chipotle peppers in a medium bowl until smooth. Cover and refrigerate.

For tempura shrimp:

  1. Heat about 2 inches of vegetable oil to 375˚F in a deep fryer.
  2. Beat egg white in a small bowl until frothy and light. Do not overbeat. Set aside.
  3. Mix together flour, cornstarch, salt, parsley, paprika, baking powder, garlic powder, and baking soda in a large bowl. Add water and egg white; mix until smooth.
  4. Add shrimp and toss until fully covered with batter.
  5. Drop 6 to 8 at a time in hot oil. Do not overcrowd. Fry 2 to 3 minutes or until golden brown and crispy. Remove fried shrimp and drain on paper towels.

To serve:

  1. Spread 1 heaping tablespoon of chipotle mayonnaise on flour tortilla and place 3 shrimp down middle. Top with small handful of cabbage and drizzle with salsa verde.
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First Look at Menu for New Trattoria al Forno at Disney’s BoardWalk — Reservations Open October 21

posted on October 15th, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


Opening day is set for December 18 for Trattoria al Forno, the new restaurant at Disney’s BoardWalk that will showcase classic Italian cuisine including handcrafted mozzarella made daily, fresh cavatelli pasta and pizzas baked in wood-burning ovens.

Uncle Pats Pickled Peppers at New Trattoria al Forno at Disney’s BoardWalk Meatball Cannelloni Basil at New Trattoria al Forno at Disney’s BoardWalk
Lasagna Bolognese at New Trattoria al Forno at Disney’s BoardWalk Chicken Parmesan at New Trattoria al Forno at Disney’s BoardWalk

Open daily for breakfast and dinner, with reservations starting October 21, Chef Dee Foundoukis and her team in Trattoria al Forno’s kitchen are creating a true taste of all of Italy’s diverse regions.

We’re so excited to finally share the menu with you – in upcoming posts we’ll be sharing details from Walt Disney Imagineering about the décor and more as we get closer to opening. And some delicious recipes for you to try at home!

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Trattoria al Forno will be open 7:30-11 a.m. for breakfast, 5-10 p.m. for dinner, and accepts the Disney Dining Plan. For reservations, call 407-WDW-DINE or www.disneyworld.com/dine.

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Fuel Your Fun with Breakfast at a Walt Disney World Resort Hotel

posted on October 15th, 2014 by Rachel Brent, Food & Beverage Marketing Communications Coordinator


Earlier this month, my family visited from Wisconsin. We spent a long weekend in the parks, so in order to have energy to play all day we had to fuel up in the mornings. I’d like to share a few of my favorites with you.

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If you are looking to try something new, Flying Fish Café at Disney’s BoardWalk is serving up breakfast until the new Trattoria al Forno opens (and dishes up some tasty breakfast eats). My favorite item on the menu is the waffle topped with tiramisu mascarpone—a must-try for any coffee lover. If you’re looking for something savory, I recommend the frittata with roasted red peppers, prosciutto, onions and potatoes topped with Pecorino Romano cheese.

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I love Minnie, so I’ll take every chance I can get to dine with my favorite mouse. One of the best places to catch Minnie—along with a couple of her beach pals—is at the Beach Club Breakfast Buffet at Cape May Cafe at Disney’s Beach Club Resort. It’s a great place to load up on Mickey waffles, too.

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Want to spend your day feeling practically perfect in every way? The Supercalifragilistic Breakfast at 1900 Park Fare is for you. From the famous strawberry soup to other signature items like lobster benedict and smoked salmon lox—this buffet has something for everyone. Some of your favorite storybook characters will even stop by while you enjoy breakfast.

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My family stayed at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge, the home of one of my favorite restaurants at Walt Disney World ResortBoma – Flavors of Africa. Traditional breakfast favorites like pancakes and omelets are accompanied by the gooey French toast bread pudding and items inspired by traditional African foods like turkey bobotie.

Say ‘Aloha!’ to Tonga Toast from Kona Café at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort. One of my all-time favorites, this banana-stuffed sourdough French toast is rolled in cinnamon sugar and served with strawberry compote. Really hungry? Try the Big Kahuna, which consists of French toast, pancakes topped with pineapple sauce and macadamia nut butter, eggs, home-fried potatoes, ham, bacon, and sausage.

Just thinking about all these breakfast options makes me hungry! What’s your favorite way to fuel up before a day at the parks?

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Filed: Hotels & Resorts, Top Stories, Walt Disney World Resort

Tips for the Best Possible Dining Experience on a Disney Cruise

posted on October 14th, 2014 by Stephen Walker, Fleet Culinary Standards and Consistency Chef, Disney Cruise Line


One meal on our ships and you’ll find why everyone raves about the food on a Disney cruise. But it’s more than just the high quality of our dishes that cruisers are talking about. It’s also our level of service and the variety of options we offer that set our dining apart.

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Eating on a Disney cruise is amazing no matter what, but there are some tips you should follow to have the best dining experience possible …

Don’t be shy with your servers. Your serving team travels with you to a different restaurant each night, and to serve you best, they need to know you well. Share with them your likes and dislikes so they can make recommendations suited to your personal tastes.

Order outside the box. Our chefs travel the world to develop new menu items so you can taste cuisines you may have never tried before. Unlike your servers, the menus change nightly, so you’ll have plenty of opportunities to “test the waters,” so to speak, and tastes dishes you don’t typically eat at home.

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Spoil yourself with an adult-only fine dining night at Palo or Remy. Trust me, your taste buds will never be the same after you dine at either of these upscale restaurants. The modern Italian cuisine at Palo and the French-inspired cuisine at Remy are truly unforgettable.

Take advantage of “Dine and Play.” It’s a parent’s dream come true. Offered during the second seating, your kids’ meals will be served first and then our youth counselors will come pick them up so you can enjoy a peaceful and leisurely meal with just the grownups.

Satisfy your cravings at any time of the day with room service. Available 24/7, there’s no up-charge to have food delivered to your stateroom. One of my favorite midnight snacks is a Mickey ice cream bar with a cold glass of milk.

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Indulge in a one-of-a-kind themed buffet. Join the party at our special buffets, like the late-night one after the Pirates IN the Caribbean party where you can re-energize after a swashbuckling night of dancing and partying. In Alaska, don’t miss the midday barbecue feast of wild Alaskan salmon and other special seafood dishes out on the open-air deck while the ship sails through the breathtaking Tracy Arm Fjord.

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Disneyland Resort Gets in the Spirit of Halloween Time with Bewitching Bites

posted on October 13th, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


The fun is underway with Halloween Time at the Disneyland ResortHaunted Mansion Holiday, Dia de los Muertos and the Halloween Carnival at Big Thunder Ranch Jamboree – all running through October 31, with festive food a big part of the fun through November 2.

Let’s start with the squiggly, wiggly zinfandel spaghetti with roasted golden beets, pine nuts and golden raisins at Storytellers Café at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa. It looks a little fiendish, but the pasta gets its “seasonal” color from wine and it’s only available the week of Halloween.

Head to Disneyland park, where Café Orleans is featuring devilishly delicious braised short ribs with purple mashed potatoes, sautéed baby carrots, red wine mushroom sauce and fried shoestring onions. Nearby, Blue Bayou serves a hearty Creole-brined, bone-in pork chop with roasted garlic Boursin mashed potatoes, sautéed baby spinach, Champagne pear coulis and tomato relish.

Pork Tamales from Rancho del Zocalo Restaurante Fire-Breathing Dragon Flatbread from Village Haus Restaurant

Bewitching quick bites include pork tamales at Rancho del Zocalo Restaurante (in honor of Dia de los Muertos), and a blue cheese and onion marmalade burger at Hungry Bear Restaurant. Head to Village Haus Restaurant for Fire-Breathing Dragon Flatbread with buffalo chicken, serrano chile slices and chipotle aioli (definitely a treat, if you love hot stuff). A little more subdued is the “Munster” chicken sausage sandwich with onions, red bell peppers, mushrooms, Muenster cheese and chicken sausage on a baguette with a side of roasted purple potatoes.

At French Market Restaurant, try the traditional shrimp po boy with deep-fried popcorn shrimp, lettuce, tomato, vinegar dressing and Cajun remoulade sauce on a toasted potato roll. Tomorrowland Terrace has a “Monsters U” cheeseburger with special sauce, lettuce, tomato, pickles and grilled onion – with a side of fries covered in Parmesan Ranch “Ooze.” Or check out the mac & cheese pizza at Redd Rockett’s Pizza Port – yes, it’s pizza crust with mac ‘n cheese topped with mozzarella and Romano cheeses and seasoned bread crumbs.

Disney California Adventure park has some haunting hits as well: a burger or grilled chicken at Taste Pilots’ Grill topped with a “cobweb” of Swiss cheese, grilled onions and mushrooms, and the Anti-Vampire Chicken Pizza at Boardwalk Pizza & Pasta with roasted garlic sauce, marinated chicken, smoked Gouda, roasted red peppers and a tomato-spicy harissa drizzle.

Ghoulishly good!

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Pumpkin Mania at Disneyland Resort

posted on October 10th, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


‘Tis the season – for pumpkin, that is. The ubiquitous gourd takes center stage at Disneyland Resort this time of year, flavoring everything from coffee to soups, and yes, even old-school pumpkin pie.

Disneyland Resort Bakery gets in on the fun with pumpkin beignets, pumpkins twists, pumpkin muffins and pumpkin cream cheese muffins sold throughout the parks and hotels. We got hooked on this pumpkin cheesecake that you’ll find at Boardwalk Pizza & Pasta at Disney California Adventure park, Jolly Holiday Bakery Café and French Market in Disneyland park and White Water Snacks at Disney’s Grand Californian Hotel & Spa. The graham cracker crust with a pinch of ginger, classic cheesecake filling and a drizzle of chocolate on top create a trifecta of yum.

Beyond the bakery, there’s pumpkin spice latte at Starbucks, and Boudin Bakery’s pumpkin-shaped sourdough at Pacific Wharf Café, the Pacific Wharf bread cart and Mortimer’s Market, all at Disney California Adventure park.

And if you’re in search of that good ol’ pumpkin pie, you’ll find it at Plaza Inn, Carnation Cafe, Village Haus Restaurant, River Belle Terrace and French Market Restaurant in Disneyland park, and at Flo’s V-8 Café and Boardwalk Pizza & Pasta at Disney California Adventure park.

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Pumpkin Cheesecake
Makes 9-inch cheesecake

Crust

  • 1 1/2 cups crushed graham cracker
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1/3 cup butter-melted

Cheesecake Filling

  • 3 (8-ounce) blocks cream cheese, softened
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 15-ounce can pumpkin purée
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 5-ounce can evaporated milk
  • Chocolate syrup, for drizzling

For crust:

  1. In a bowl combine the crushed graham cracker, sugar and ginger. Melt the butter and stir into mixture.
  2. Spray bottom and sides of a 9-inch springform pan. Press crust mixture into bottom of pan using your hands.
  3. Place pan on a large piece of foil and wrap foil tightly up sides and around pan.

For cheesecake filling:

  1. Preheat oven to 325°F.
  2. Beat cream cheese, brown sugar, and granulated sugar together in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Scrape down sides of bowl.
  3. Add eggs, one at a time, mixing well after each addition. Scrape down sides of bowl.
  4. Whisk together pumpkin purée, cornstarch, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a medium bowl until well combined. Add pumpkin mixture to cream cheese mixture, beating until well combined. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add evaporated milk, mixing well.
  5. Slowly pour cheesecake filling onto crust mixture in prepared pan. Drizzle with chocolate syrup.
  6. Place foil-wrapped pan inside a larger roasting pan. Place oven rack and carefully add enough hot water to reach halfway up sides of springform pan.
  7. Bake 1 hour, or until center moves only slightly when shaken.
  8. Turn oven off. Crack open oven door, and allow cheesecake to cool inside oven 1 hour.
  9. Remove pan from water bath and set on a wire rack to cool completely. Cover top of pan with foil and refrigerate for at least 4 hours and up to overnight.

Cook’s Notes: Wrapping foil around springform pan prevents water from the water bath from getting into the cheesecake. The slow cooling inside the oven prevents cheesecake top from cracking.

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2014 Travelers’ Choice: TripAdvisor Names Victoria & Albert’s One of Top 5 Restaurants in U.S.

posted on October 10th, 2014 by Pam Brandon, Disney Parks Food Writer


Victoria & Albert’s at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa was honored as one of the Top 5 restaurants in the United States in TripAdvisor’s 2014 Travelers’ Choice awards.

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The Walt Disney World Resort restaurant is the only Florida restaurant on the illustrious list. “One-of-a-kind dining experience in Orlando – worth it!” and “A special meal in a special place,” reads the TripAdvisor website.

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Victoria & Albert’s also is a AAA Five-Diamond Award winner, one of just two in Florida. Under the helm of Chef Scott Hunnel, maître d hotel Israel Perez and Pastry Chef Erich Herbitschek, the restaurant features some of the very best seasonal ingredients from local markets, as well as from around the world.

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TripAdvisor branded sites make up the largest travel community in the world, according to the website, reaching nearly 280 million unique monthly visitors and more than 170 million reviews and opinions covering more than 4 million accommodations, restaurants and attractions.

The awards honor top travel spots worldwide based on millions of reviews and opinions from TripAdvisor travelers. Award winners were determined using an algorithm that took into account the quantity and quality of reviews for restaurants worldwide, gathered over a 12-month period.

Congrats to Chef Scott, Israel, Chef Erich and the entire Victoria & Albert’s team!

For more on Victoria & Albert’s at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa, visit the posts below:

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