Guide to Disney’s California Adventure Food & Wine Festival

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The annual Food & Wine Festival has returned to Disney’s California Adventure to offer seasonal food, wine, and craft beer.  Food carts are scattered around the park, but mostly on the main drag stretching from Carthay Circle to Pixar Pier, to serve sample-sized dishes.  These dishes are unique to the festival so if you’re looking to try a spiced roasted chicken pita, Peruvian Poke or a grilled beef tenderloin slider topped with chimichurri all within the great setting that is DCA, this is a festival you cannot miss.

The festival is one of DCA’s signature events and is definitely a huge deal among the Disneyland Resort pass holders.  I make sure to visit at least once a year during the festival to get my fill of good food and great beer.  Wine makes me sleepy, unfortunately.  Some folks can’t believe a theme park could offer anything other than a corn dog or dried out chicken tenders but that couldn’t be further from the truth as the Disneyland Resort takes their food very serious particularly when serving their specialty foods.

Related: Win a 4-Pack of Tickets to the Disneyland Resort

Disney’s California Adventure offers so much, and some things can be overlooked so they offer a couple of things to help you make the most of your trip.  The first thing you need is a tasting passport.  These passport booklets can be found at every food cart but by the time you get to one you’ve already missed a few things.  My advice is to grab one as soon as you walk in at guest services, just to the left after the main gates.  The passport lists every dish and where to find it.  Plus, if you’re into the whole “memento” thing, you can get your passport stamped when ordering and now you have a keepsake.  And if you’re wondering, yes I get the stamps.  After you’ve looked at the list and discovered that you want to try everything in the book, you have to get the Food & Wine Festival Sip and Savor Pass.  For $54 you get 8 tickets good for a food dish or a non-alcoholic beverage.  With each dish setting you back $6-8, it’s a damn good deal.  Once you have your passport and your Sip & Savor Pass, there’s nothing that can stop you… except for security.  Don’t drink too much, security doesn’t play.

Check out the dishes I tried.

Citrus-brined Pork Roast with Tangy Barbeque Sauce & Lemon Pepper Slaw

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VerlassoTM Sustainable Salmon Peruvian Poke with Cucumber-Lime Salad and Aji Verde Salsa

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Ghost Pepper Mac & Cheese with Chili Cheese Corn Chip Dust

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Harris Ranch Grilled Beef Tenderloin Slider with Chimichurri Sauce & Salt and Vinegar Parmesan Chicken Wings

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Black Garlic Soy-braised Pork Belly Banh Mi

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Shrimp Boil Tacos with Andouille Sausage & Fresh Corn

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Esquites Sweet Corn Nuggets with Bacon Lardons

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And to wash it all down… Cool Lime Michelada with Frozen Lime Ice using Chihuahua Cerveza, Premium Lager

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I definitely took advantage of my Sip and Savor Pass, but there are so many more dishes and drinks I wanted to try.  I regret not getting the Beer-braised Pork Tacos or the Anaheim Chile Relleno Bites, but there are only so many hours in a day and I am but only one man.  I will most definitely be back before the festival ends on April 23rd and I’m sure I’ll post some more pictures.  Until then, cheers and I hope you enjoyed the list.