Went to the Food and Wine Festival this weekend, and had my mother with me for the first time so that she could experience it. The past couple of years that I have attended, I have tried to sample everything that even sort of piqued my interest.
Not this time.
This time around, we were a lot more selective about what we went for. We would go up to each booth, look at the menu and decide whether anything even sounded remotely interesting, then watch the booth as other people would buy the different items. If they looked good, then we would get in line and give it a shot.
This only happened a couple of times.
The new Singapore booth was one that we sampled substantially. They had two different food items (I differentiate this from the wine aspect of the booths, as well as dessert items) which we sampled, both of which were excellent.
The first item was a shrimp cake with Singapore noodle salad. We had to wait a while for this, since the shrimp cakes were taking a while to cook up on the grill. Unfortunately, they were rushing a bit, and our cake was underdone. It was still tasty, but the fact that it was underdone was kind of offsetting. The noodle salad was also stone cold, though we are now thinking that this was on purpose, and not something that happened simply because it sat out for a little while. The noodle salad was quite good, and had a nice spiciness that made us want more.
The second item was a coconut braised beef rendang with jasmine rice. This was the best thing we had all day from the festival. While the rice was something that you could get anywhere, the rendang was exceptional. It had a nice sweetness to it before a bit of a spicy kick came out at the end. I am now looking for recipes for this one, because it was that good.
The second (and last) booth that we stopped at was Argentina, where they had a roasted corn and cheese empanada. This was quite tasty, the filling just right, and the flaky crust beautifully made.
That was it for booths that we actually sampled! Yes, just two. We looked very hard at what was being put out by Australia, but when we passed by the second time the barramundi fish just didn’t look as appealing as it did the first time around (we were no longer anywhere near as hungry), and the lambchops seemed very small for the price… not to mention we both have racks of lamb from Australia sitting at home in the freezer waiting to be cooked up.
One other place that we looked at was the lettuce wraps with roast pork and kimchi slaw from South Korea. Unfortunately, the second time around when we looked at it again, it had also lost it’s luster.
We finished off the day at EPCOT with a meal from Japan, a rice bowl with curried beef and potatoes that is always available from the Yakitori House up on the hill behind the pagoda. It is a substantial amount of food, and certainly enough for two people. One of my more favorite places to get food at EPCOT these days, because it is one of the more economical quick food places.