Deconstructed Dish Review: Epcot Arts Festival

Our stop next at Epcot’s International Festival of the Arts is the Deconstructed Dish Food Studio. This Walt Disney World dining review features real world photos of every food and dessert on the menu, and offer our reviews & thoughts on each dish.

Deconstructed is one of many obnoxious and fairly meaningless buzzwords coined by self-proclaimed foodies (another good example) to make eating sound unnecessarily pretentious. I’m honestly a bit surprised this booth doesn’t specialize in an artisanal menu of farm to table fusion concepts locally sourced and curated for your noshing pleasure.

Call me a traditionalist, but I prefer my foods to look like the things they’re supposed to be, rather than arbitrarily pretentious works of abstract art. In fairness, this is an art festival, so if the idea fits anywhere, it’s at Epcot’s Festival of Arts. More importantly, the menu at Deconstructed Dish is excellent, irrespective of presentation, from start to finish.

Here’s what’s on the menu at the Deconstructed Dish Food Studio:

  • Deconstructed BLT with Crispy Pork Belly, Tomato Jam and Soft Poached Egg
  • Deconstructed Reuben with Shredded Corned Beef, Thousand Island Dressing, Pickled Red Cabbage and a Rye Curl
  • Deconstructed Strawberry Cheesecake: Whipped, New York Style Cheesecake with Fresh Florida Strawberries and Sugar Cookies with Micro-basil

Setting aside our potentially irrational pet peeves, let’s take a look at our photos and reviews of each food item…

First up is the Deconstructed Reuben. This is simultaneously the most frustrating item on the menu and best-presented. It’s much more photogenic than a normal sandwich, and has an almost space-age look to it. So that’s cool, I guess.

The downside is that it takes some doing to make this actually taste like a reuben sandwich. Additionally, there’s not nearly enough bread for the amount of meat, so proportions are an issue. (Good news for those guests on whatever anti-bread diet is hip these days.) The upside is that the meat is tender, generously portioned, and to the extent that you can re-construct it, it tastes like a great reuben.

Next, the Deconstructed BLT. This is one of my favorite items of the Epcot Festival of Arts for the second straight year, and that’s probably at least in part because it only pays face to the “deconstructed” notion, and is really just it’s own thing. (Unless I’m missing something?)

The pork belly here has a surface crispness providing a nice contrast to its absurd tenderness, and the poached egg adding further savory flavor and depth to the meat. The tomato jam is like icing on the proverbial pork cake, with a bit of sweetness that contrasts nicely with the other flavors.

Finally, the Deconstructed Strawberry Cheesecake. I’m of two minds about this. On the one hand, I think this is a fun and playful way to approach a deconstructed cheesecake, and the approach gives you some control over each of the main flavors.

On the other hand, the whipped cheesecake falls somewhere between melted ice cream and actual cheesecake in terms of consistency, and I think that misses the mark a bit too much for my personal preference. We otherwise enjoyed it, and that might seem like a minor quibble, but I’d rather just have normal cheesecake that tastes exactly as good.

Here are your options in terms of drinks at the Deconstructed Dish Food Studio:

  • Pop-Artsicle: Red, White and Blue Frozen Slushy (non-alcoholic)
  • Deconstructed Breakfast (non-alcoholic)
  • Imagery Sauvignon Blanc, California
  • Mad Genius Red Blend, California
  • Deconstructed Breakfast: Twinings Spiced Apple Chai Tea Shake with Cream Bourbon, garnished with a Waffle Crisp and Candied Bacon
  • Twinings Spiced Apple Chai Tea Shake garnished with Maple Syrup, a Waffle Crisp and Candied Bacon (non-alcoholic)

Overall, Deconstructed Dish ranks as one of our top Food Studios at the Epcot International Festival of the Arts, with each item tasting great and having its own appeal. It’s honestly a bit disappointing to us that these items resort to the ‘deconstructed’ gimmick, which feels tedious and unnecessary for items of this caliber. That seems like the type of thing that’d be better utilized with crumby food that needs some sort of crutch to give it redeeming value, rather than with dishes this good. Obviously, your mileage may vary on that, and perhaps the “foodies” out there will think this hand-crafted, artisanal selection of deconstructed dishes is delish and yummers.

Check out our Food Guide to the Epcot International Festival of the Arts if you want to see and read more about every Food Studio this year, what to eat & avoid, and other tips for making the most of the culinary side of the event. As this event isn’t just about the cuisine, you’ll also want to read our full Epcot International Festival of the Arts Tips & Tricks post for info about the non-culinary side of the festivities. That covers the Disney on Broadway concert series, visual arts, performing arts, participatory arts, and much more!

Planning a Walt Disney World trip? Learn about hotels on our Walt Disney World Hotels Reviews page. For where to eat, read our Walt Disney World Restaurant Reviews. To save money on tickets or determine which type to buy, read our Tips for Saving Money on Walt Disney World Tickets post. Our What to Pack for Disney Trips post takes a unique look at clever items to take. For what to do and when to do it, our Walt Disney World Ride Guides will help. For comprehensive advice, the best place to start is our Walt Disney World Trip Planning Guide for everything you need to know!


What do you think of the Deconstructed Dish Food Studio? Have you tried any of the food items at this booth? What did you think of them? Do you agree that Deconstructed Dish ranks as one of the top overall booths at the Epcot International Festival of the Arts? 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!

7 Responses to “Deconstructed Dish Review: Epcot Arts Festival”
  1. Heather January 23, 2019
  2. Kim January 22, 2019
  3. Craig Wiseman January 22, 2019
  4. Elisa January 21, 2019
    • Brittany Matthews January 21, 2019
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