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French Family Meal Traditions Review


Hi there blog readers! Agent Liz here with my first post and it’s about food. I expect many of my contributions here will have something to do with sustenance.

Today I am writing about my 2017 French Family Meal Traditions experience. Let’s dig in!

French Family Meal Traditions is a three hour, five course lunch at Monsieur Paul located in the France Pavilion of World Showcase in Epcot. This special dining experience is only offered on select days during the Epcot International Food and Wine Festival. This is a signature restaurant and does come with a dress code. I usually wear a comfortable day dress, or nice blouse with a skirt for a day time in park event.

As occasionally happens at Walt Disney World, my friend and I arrived later than expected. Since we were the last two to arrive, the hostess downstairs graciously escorted us to the last two seats available. The view was lovely and we arrived in time to get to know our table mates a bit before the first course began. It is customary to sit at tables with others for this event and while I felt apprehensive about that going in, my hesitation quickly vanished as I met our new Disney friends. We sat with a lovely retired couple with stories that made our table tear up on more than one occasion, and a set of best friends. This enhanced the warm and happy feeling that I experienced during this entire meal.


We sat down to a cute napkin setting, menu, and an aperitif of puff pastry with chives and a goat cheese cream paired with a Cocktail La French Mule. There was also a fresh baguette with butter on the table to enjoy at our leisure. It was a simple and delightful start.

 


Our appetizer course was salmon in a puff pastry with cream sauce. I do not typically enjoy seafood, but have been doing my best to try it in settings that have earned my trust. I also wanted to enjoy the menu as it was meant to be and I am so glad I did. Every bite of this perfectly balanced appetizer was buttery and rich in the best possible ways. It was paired with a Ruby Red, Rose Grapefruit wine that our entire table enjoyed so much, we guzzled down an extra bottle or two.

The main course was braised beef ribs, mashed potatoes, and vegetables paired perfectly with a Les Darons Languedoc. Each portion is served in a personal sized Le Creuset pot. On a crisp autumn day, I would have devoured every bite! Since it was pretty warm outside and this was my third course, I ate as much as I possibly could, knowing we still had two left.


Next was the cheese course. As our agency owner Pam can confirm, I’m a bit of a cheese snob, but I could have licked my plate clean it was so good. It’s hard to go wrong with a fig jam and Stilton, but the quality was definitely there, and that makes all the difference. It was paired with a Bordeaux that was my least favorite of the wines, but hey, one of them had to be. Look at this sexy cheese plate. I mean, come on!


Finally, it was time for the dessert course. The citrus eclair, strawberry jam, pistachio cake, lemon lime cream, and strawberry lemon sorbet looked equally fun and delectable. I appreciated how light it was, since it was still pretty warm outside. It was naturally paired with champagne. A perfect ending to a scrumptious meal!


As we left, we were each given a little goodie bag that included an adorable cookbook and spatula. The spatula had a bit of sparkle, which reminds me of the magic of Disney every time I use it! We wished our new friends happily ever afters, and enjoyed the rest of our day at EPCOT.


If you can’t already tell by my fan girl gushing, this is my favorite dining experience I’ve enjoyed at Walt Disney World to date. In 2017, it cost $95 per person plus tax. Due to its higher price tag compared to some of the other tasting events during Food and Wine, it doesn’t always fill up right away. It does draw repeat guests, which adds to the family themed experience.

During this dining experience, a chef hosts and talks about each course before or while you eat it. I love this, and there is still plenty of time to chat. One important thing to note about this event is the slow pace of the meal. There is definitely time to savor and digest each course. At one point, we were able to see the performers out our window! The retired couple at our table had been repeating this experience for years, since the menu changes week to week. I enjoyed it again the following October with my husband, who is a constant critic, and some of our dear couple friends. It was just as wonderful the second time.

This is for you if:
  • You want a fun adult foodie experience without the crowds
  • You enjoy endless wine refills
  • You’re in no rush
  • You don’t have to drive anywhere after
You might want to skip this if:
  • You’re traveling with little ones
  • You don’t enjoy wine
  • It’s your first visit
Stay tuned for my review of this experience in 2018 coming soon!

- Agent Liz

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