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Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival

I’m going to Disneyland!!

This trip was planned somewhat last minute on the basis of needing to get another Disneyland trip in to justify the cost of our annual passes AND the Food & Wine Festival was going on, one of the highlights of the year when we were back in Orlando and this was the only weekend we could get down to Anaheim. So, we checked flights, set up a dog sitter and booked ourselves a hotel on a Sunday evening, six days out.

The Hotel

We have historically stayed on site at the Disneyland Hotel and while we very much want to stay at the Grand Californian we had a lot of other travel planned for this month and had not budgeted to drop a few hundred dollars on a hotel. Instead we booked a room at the Tropicana which is literally across the street from the Disneyland Resort and we stayed based on the recommendations of other people we had talked with at the parks on previous visits and it was just fine, I’d 100% stay here again. The pool in the parking lot with two stories of rooms overlooking that same sea of asphalt screamed 60’s motel but the rooms are just fine, recently renovated and a good size. Our room wasn’t ready upon arrival so we checked out bags (two backpacks for this overnight) and headed off to the parks.

Tropicana Inn - Room Tropicana Inn - Map

Carthay Circle

So, our first stop on any Disneyland trip is Carthay Circle for their amazing bloody Mary’s. We were there at opening so didn’t have to wait in a line, which is pretty much expected any time after the first seating when the restaurant opens for lunch. We sat at the bar, always a treat to snag one of those spots because their bar tenders are always fun to chat with. We had the pleasure of meeting Miami Rob this trip, he’s my new favorite! We got chatting to a couple that had driven down from the Bay Area and they tipped us off about the Sip and Savor pass

Bloody Mary

Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival

The Sip and Savor Pass

A souvenir lanyard containing 8 coupons good for purchasing food and non-alcoholic beverages, only available to annual passholders that cost $45. So if you are using this thing and putting coupons toward things that cost $6 or more then it totally pays for itself, by the end of the day we still had a bunch left and the festival was due to close for the day so we went to one spot to use up what we had left but with us each having one, we more than got our monies worth and hit all but one of the stands.

So, here we go, in order…

LAstyle

Korean Barbecue Beef Short Rib Tacos with Kimchi Slaw – $7.50

Korean Barbecue Beef Short Rib Tacos with Kimchi Slaw

Nuts About Cheese & The Brewhouse

Goat Cheese Tartine Fromage Blanc Tartine with Rosemary and Hazelnuts (V) – $4.50 Tropical IPA Shandy – $9.75

Goat Cheese Tartine Fromage Blanc Tartine with Rosemary and Hazelnuts

Next we crossed to the opposite side of the park and started to work our way back to the front of the festival.

Off the Cob

Sweet Corn Nuggets with Beef Chili – $6.75 Shrimp Boil Tacos with Andouille Sausage and Fresh Corn (GF) – $7.00 Popcorn Lemonade Cocktail – $12.25

Off the Cob selections

Garlic Kissed

Bloody Mary with Garlic-stuffed Olive – $12.25

Cluck-A-Doodle-Moo

Grilled Harris Ranch Beef Tenderloin Slider with Chimichurri Sauce – $8.00 Salt & Beer Vinegar Parmesan Chicken Wings – $7.50

Cluck-A-Doodle-Moo selections

We took a time out to go back to Carthay Circle and get some more drinks with Miami Mike and his homies. This time I got myself an Irish coffee. Too much booze, paired with an early start to the day meant I was starting to drag a bit.

Irish coffee

After some re-caffinating it was on with our adventure.

California Craft Brews

White Cheddar Lager Soup in a Mini Boudin’s Sourdough Bowl (V) – $6.00 Mission Hefeweizen – $14.00

White Cheddar Lager Soup in a Mini Boudin’s Sourdough Bowl

Peppers Cali-Ente

Jalapeño Popper Mac & Cheese with Bacon – $7.50 Verlasso™ Sustainable Salmon Peruvian Poke (GF) – $7.50 Lime Margarita with Jalapeño Garnish – $12.50

Peppers Cali-ente selections

We paused here to grab a drink at the Sonoma Terrace which was reopened from it’s winter rehab. Here I got to grab a WDW food and wine staple, Rosa Regala! YUM!

Rosa Regala

Approaching sunset we went to our favorite spot, the patio behind Flo’s diner in Cars Land, where we sat with a Racer 5 IPA and watched the sun go down, truly one of our favorite things to do, nobody ever sits out there, it’s so peaceful and amazing to take in. I get why people hate Disney, it’s madness, very on-the-go all of the time. To those people, I say you’re doing Disney wrong. It really is ok to stop and sit in a spot and watch the world pass you by, that’s when this place feels it’s most magical. We didn’t even ride one single attraction this visit, we purely went down there to eat and drink and be happy in one of my favorite places.

Cars Land

So by this point we were pretty sloppy and forgot to take pictures or did remember but after we’d started eating. Not sorry, we kinda know that’s how the day would go.

Avocado Time

Avocado & Pepper Jack Petite Guacamole Burger – $7.75

Eat Your Greens

Grilled Asparagus Ceasar Salad – $5.50

Citrus Grove

Meyer Lemon Macaron with Blueberry Marmalade, Meyer Lemon Cream and Blueberry Dust — $4.75

Meyer Lemon Macaron with Blueberry Marmalade, Meyer Lemon Cream and Blueberry Dust

I Heart Artichokes

Bourbon Chocolate Whoopie Pie – $4.50

Bourbon Chocolate Whoopie Pie

Strawberry Patch

We skipped this one but I wish I’d gone for the Strawberry Frose.

The other stuff we did that wasn’t Food & Wine

After starting the day wondering how we’d make best use of out tokens to be able to taste all of the food and collect all of the buttons for each food stand we actually ended up going back to Cluck-A-Doodle-Moo and trading them in for multiple orders of wings and another slider. You see, they all close right before World of Color so you gotta use em up and we probably weren’t going to make it back before the end of the festival.

The one thing we did that wasn’t Food and Wine related was World of Color. It’s our favorite nighttime show in any of the Disney parks we’ve visited, so far and a perfect way to end a day, well the part part of it. After park close we of course made our way over to Trader Sam’s at the Disneyland Hotel for more drinks, while I love this bar it’s always so insanely packed in there but well worth a visit nonetheless.