2017 Epcot Food and Wine Festival Review: “Behind the Scenes” at Trader Sam’s Grog Grotto, Polynesian
AllEars.Net Guest Writer
We arrived just prior to 1:00 and checked in with Skipper Danny. Guests were gathered in the hall outside of Trader Sam's waiting for the event to begin.
When the doors opened we were welcomed and invited to find seats anywhere that had a place setting of silverware. The venue is relatively small, and the center island was used by the Skippers for the mixology demos. We chose seats at the main bar. My personal opinion is that the bar stools were very uncomfortable, but your mileage may vary!
The Skippers started us off with a Hippopotto Mai-Tai. Many of the cocktails are themed around three attractions in the parks – Jungle Cruise, Enchanted Tiki Room, and 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea (at Disneyland). There are decorations around the bar that pay homage to these attractions as well.
As we sipped the Chef came out to describe the first bite, The Headhunter Sushi Roll. Made with salmon, this roll can be found on the Trader Sam's menu on a regular basis.
Our next drink was the Krakatoa Punch. Skipper Seth demonstrated how the drink is made by mixing the ingredients in a cocktail shaker. This drink was paired with a delicious tropical shrimp ceviche.
Rosita's Margarita was up next, served with a Bacalao Trio (trio of bites made with salted cod). The croquette was a flavorful crispy ball coated in panko, the Brandade de Morue and Portuguese Stew were served side by side over creamy mashed potatoes.
Drink #4 was the Kentucky Spiced Cocktail featuring Knob Creek Disney Select Bourbon. The dish for this course was a tender, savory Polynesian soy braised short rib.
Our afternoon concluded with a Shrunken Head Zombie rum drink alongside of a wonderful sweet and salty dessert of a dark chocolate Black Pearl. The dessert featured a Togarashi spiced peanut praline, coconut Thai basil ganache and miso caramel.
Throughout the event the Skippers entertained us with jokes, trivia about the decor, and demonstrations of the antics we might encounter when ordering the special themed drinks. From volcanoes erupting to deep sea diving Skippers, there is always something fun going on at Trader Sam's!
At the conclusion of the event we were each given a souvenir Krakatoa mug and a set of 5 cocktail recipe cards. It was a very enjoyable event!
Presented on select Wednesdays during the festival, $129 per person.