Coast Eats is our next booth as we continue around the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival at Walt Disney World. In this Global Marketplace review, we’ll look at the menu prices, share food photos, and offer thoughts on what is–and is not–worth your money.
Walt Disney World touts Coastal Eats as being a booth for savoring the ocean’s finest flavors along with wines grown near the Pacific coastline. (Personally, I think it’d be cool if Disney picked an actual coastal nation or even state for “the seafood booth.”) Per DisneyWorld.com’s Global Marketplace page describing the booth, “you can almost feel the sea breeze!”
Normally I give Disney’s marketing team a lot of leeway with the advertising puffery, but I’ve gotta firmly dispute that “feel the sea breeze” line. As I stood in line for roughly 20 minutes at Coastal Eats, all I could feel was the sunlight reflecting off the concrete. It felt more like a desert–with added humidity–and absolutely nothing like the coast. But I digress.
Coastal Eats Food Menu:
Lump Crab Cake with Aïoli and Vinegar Slaw
Coastal Eats Beverages
Wildly Brut Cuvée, South Australia (NEW)
Cape Codder: Boyd & Blair Vodka with Cranberry, Pomegranate and Lime
Now for our reviews of the food items at the Coastal Eats Global Marketplace during the EPCOT Food & Wine Festival…
Oysters Rockefeller ($7.50) – In case you missed it, our review of the Fry Basket booth was relatively critical. The fry flight at that booth is about as unambitious as possible, and poorly executed, to boot. What does that have to do with Coastal Eats, you might ask? Well, if Walt Disney World can’t even do french fries right at the booth next door, how on earth could they possibly do justice to oysters rockefeller?!
I don’t know the answer to that question, but yet, they somehow pulled it off!
These three large oysters are perfectly-prepared, hearty in size, and not the least bit rubbery or tasting as if they’ve slow-cooked under a heat lamp. To the contrary, they were something I’d be happy to receive at a table service restaurant. Garlic and spinach further elevate the flavor profile and breadcrumbs add texture–none of this gets in the way of the oyster flavor, which is still allowed to shine. Highly recommended, somehow.
Baked Shrimp and Scallop Scampi Dip with Baguette ($6) – We were excited for this dish to return, as it was one of our favorite items at the Epcot International Food & Wine Festival in years past. We’ve remarked in the past that Epcot always tends to do scallops well, and that’s especially true this year as these scallops are hearty in size, semi-crisp on the exterior, and tender inside. The char and light smokiness are just perfect.
Unfortunately, this is no longer served with full-sized scallops atop the scampi dip. Instead, the shrimp and scallops are diced up and inside the dip, with a lot less seafood. It’s still a good, rich shrimp scampi dip–but a definite downgrade.
With that complaint out of the way, let’s focus on the positives. The scampi dip is oozing with butter, garlic, herbs, shrimp, and just general cheesy goodness. The baguette is actually an improvement as compared to prior years, and there’s more of it (but still not quite enough). Not as great of a dish as in the past, but still fantastic. Also highly recommended.
Overall, Coastal Eats again delivers one of the better booths at the EPCOT International Food & Wine Festival. It’s good to see this return, and bring more high-quality seafood dishes at fair (by Walt Disney World standards) prices. My only complaint is that there are only two items on the menu, as compared to the normal 4.
My hope is that in future years when staffing is better, the full menu is restored. Coastal Eats used to do a surprisingly good job with scallops, salmon, and even crab cakes. Given the number of unambitious options at the event, it would be nice to see one of the better booths have a deeper menu.
What do you think of the Coastal Eats marketplace? Have you tried any of the three food items at this booth? Do you agree that the seafood here is generally top-notch? Questions we can help you answer? Hearing your feedback–even when you disagree with us–is both interesting to us and helpful to other readers, so please share your thoughts below in the comments!