Inspired by our complete enjoyment of our meal at Jaleo, we decided to try all of the food offerings at the Spain global marketplace at the Food & Wine Festival. Spain is one of the relatively new booths at the festival, making its debut in 2017. If you’re looking for complete coverage of the festival, you can check out our Ultimate Guide to the Epcot Food & Wine Festival.
The Spain booth features two returning items and some modifications to the paella from last year. While we weren’t necessarily overwhelmed with excitement at the offerings, we were intrigued to try them. By the time we got to this booth I was pretty hungry and on the hunt for some gluten free items, which Spain does feature. You can see the full menu for the Spain marketplace in the picture below.
Spain is located between the Germany and Italy pavilions along World Showcase promenade. We took our dishes over to the waterfront of World Showcase Lagoon which provided a nice respite from the crowds and hustle and bustle of the Festival.
Charcuterie in a Cone with Imported Spanish Meats, Cheeses and Olives with an Herb Vinaigrette – $6.50
Well, this dish was clearly a winner with our family. Mike barely got to try anything as Elsa and Anna attacked this and cleared out most of the meat and cheese before he could get his hands on it! The girls loved the meats, which are freshly sliced to order. The cheese was a bit of surprise to them as it was coated in the vinaigrette, but they still enjoyed it. The only thing the three of them left behind was the olives as none of us are fans of olives.
It was a generous portion, and the cone made it fun for the girls and easy to carry around. So word to the wise, this is easy to eat quickly so if you are sharing it with others, be sure to eat some right away or it may be gone!
We enjoyed the charcuterie in a cone, but at $6.50 the value isn’t high. If you aren’t worried about that, it is something we would definitely recommend. It’s a pretty good value as a snack credit on the Disney Dining Plan.
Spanish Style Paella with Botifarra and Roasted Chicken – $7.75
The paella is served on a small plate rather than the paper “trays” used for many Food and Wine Festival dishes. This left the serving looking rather modest; however there is a generous portion of botifarra sausage served with each order. The sausage provided suitable heft to the dish that makes it more filling than it may seem at first glance.
The rest of the paella paled in comparison to the delicious flavor of the sausage. It stood out in a pleasing way while not overpowering the rice mixture itself. Mike liked that part of this dish but found the rice boring. It just seemed like filler. I think we counted one piece of roasted chicken on the plate too. That was disappointing.
The girls did not enjoy it at all, especially the sausage. For comparison’s sake, all three of them loved the paella at Jaleo. The unique, smoky flavor of the sausage was off-putting to the girls as it isn’t the typical flavor of American sausage. If you enjoy smoky flavors you might enjoy this dish, but the strong flavor could be very polarizing.
We’d suggest passing on this dish. For something called Paella, the meat to rice ratio is drastically off, not to mention the flavors. At the end of the day, if you want good paella, go to Jaleo. This doesn’t hold a candle to what you can get there.
Seafood Salad with Shrimp, Bay Scallops, Mussels, Extra Virgin Olive Oil, White Balsamic Vinegar, and Smoked Paprika (Gluten Free) – $6.00
I love seafood, especially shellfish, so I don’t know why I initially wasn’t overly excited to try this salad. As soon as I took my first bite though, I was immediately overwhelmed with the deliciousness of fresh flavors from the seafood salad. All four of us fought over the shrimp; even Anna who is slowly warming up to seafood loved the shrimp here. Elsa’s newfound liking of scallops at the Coastal Eats marketplace continued here, and she also tried a mussel and enjoyed it. Mike and I both love all three seafood components and couldn’t enough of the vinegar-based dressing that coated the seafood.
The portion was plentiful, especially for this price, but we could have enjoyed another serving. As you can see in the picture above, the ratio of real seafood components to non-seafood components is well balanced. We didn’t get two measly little shrimp, and that’s it.
This is the perfect dish to enjoy in the hot Florida weather. As I discussed in the India review, I was still trying to maintain my healthy, clean eating style somewhat on vacation, and this dish fit that bill perfectly. If you are a shellfish fan, then don’t miss the dish.
And with that, we’ll wrap up our Spain Review for the 2019 Epcot Food and Wine Festival. While the paella is probably a pass, both the seafood salad and charcuterie in a cone were clear standouts and dishes we would happily order a second time.