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Old 06-11-2009, 07:48 AM   #91
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honestly I think maybe part of it was the stunt cookie - at the last one my mother and I were given a standard theme park issue macadamia nut cookie with icing on it and I think they were trying to pass it off as the thin butter cookie that was part of the demo. How clueless do they think we are? When asked, the explanation was that they wanted to provide "a variety" but then why give only one table of guests a stunt cookie? They brought more butter cookies but the icing was runny - that may have been the reason why they didn't want to serve them in the first place.

You guys have posted so many links it'll take me forever to repost them on the first post - may have to pick out some good overview reviews. But I am working this weekend so don't know when I will have time!
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Old 06-11-2009, 08:10 AM   #92
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honestly I think maybe part of it was the stunt cookie - at the last one my mother and I were given a standard theme park issue macadamia nut cookie with icing on it and I think they were trying to pass it off as the thin butter cookie that was part of the demo. How clueless do they think we are? When asked, the explanation was that they wanted to provide "a variety" but then why give only one table of guests a stunt cookie? They brought more butter cookies but the icing was runny - that may have been the reason why they didn't want to serve them in the first place.
Ick. I'm not a big cookie person, anyway, but that just sounds gross.

Dont you wonder how they can run out of items when it's a pre-booked event with limited seating? Makes me wonder sometimes about the folks doing the plannng.


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You guys have posted so many links it'll take me forever to repost them on the first post - may have to pick out some good overview reviews. But I am working this weekend so don't know when I will have time!
Why don't you just link to each post instead? That way you'd only have three links and you could just list them under a general heading that reads something like ... F&W Festival Pictures & Reviews. Just a thought, and then it wouldn't be very much work or take much time.
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Old 06-11-2009, 08:30 AM   #93
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Hate to be the voice of dissent... but we really love Sweet Sundays! Last year we went to Gale Gand's demo and it was wonderful! She's an amazing pastry chef and we are so lucky to have her close to home in Chicago! Here are some pics of the event...

The table set up in the Chef's Showplace in the Festival Center. The wine glasses were full of Asti Prosecco and it flowed freely the entire event.


The Sweet Sundays buffet...


The buffet food was surprisingly good!


We got to speak to Gale before the Demo started...


My daughter was thrilled to get her autograph!


After a toast to the audience, Gale began to make her magic...


I don't have the 'official' descriptions of what she made handy, but here is the 1st sample. Vanilla custard with berries.


Pineapple Peppercorn Cake...


Chocolate sampler with a chocolate meringue cookie. Gale explained the differences with chocolate and what is the best kind to use for different recipes.


Gale & her son, Gio.


The book signing after the Sweet Sundays demonstration. It's held near the gift shop at the front of the Festival Center.


So, for us, Sweet Sundays is a winner. We saw Colette Peters the year before and she was also fun to watch... but her dessert samples weren't as good as Gale's.

If you don't want to pay to go to Sweet Sundays, the pastry chefs usually do at least one or two free demos during the weekend that they are booked. Keep an eye on the Festival booklet - it will list the free demos. We also ran into Gale at the Party for the Senses the night before. (Yes, we did both, back to back, and survived to tell the tale! LOL! )
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Old 06-11-2009, 08:40 AM   #94
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My plan is to do PFTS our first Saturday, maybe an event if it works out.
Sunday we will walk around the Land and do Future World. Then go graze at the kiosks for dinner and see Sister Hazel. We might do a seminar if anything looks good.
Monday we will do any seminars that look good and tour the kiosks. Then see Kool and the Gang.
Our last Sunday was when I was planning to do the Sweet Sunday.
I wouldn't do PFTS and Sweet Sunday back to back. I was just wondering what others thought of doing V&A that same week.
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Old 06-11-2009, 08:56 AM   #95
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My plan is to do PFTS our first Saturday, maybe an event if it works out.
Sunday we will walk around the Land and do Future World. Then go graze at the kiosks for dinner and see Sister Hazel. We might do a seminar if anything looks good.
Monday we will do any seminars that look good and tour the kiosks. Then see Kool and the Gang.
Our last Sunday was when I was planning to do the Sweet Sunday.
I wouldn't do PFTS and Sweet Sunday back to back. I was just wondering what others thought of doing V&A that same week.
doing V&A the same week would be fine in my opinion. it was hard for me to tell from your initial post how you were thinking of planning your event schedule so that's why I thought you meant back-to-back. Anyhoo ... we did Sweet Sundays and then followed it the next night with dinner at V&A ... no trouble at all. Go for it!

Michelle, your pics from Sweet Sundays are great! I love how they decorated the tables.
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Old 06-11-2009, 10:13 AM   #96
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My other comment is that there is no way on earth I plan to pay a lot of money for an event that takes place in the Festival Center at Wonders of Life if all they are going to do is block off part of the pavilion with potted palms. (If you'd like more detail on the reasoning read Oybolshoi's review of a Kitchen Conversation from last year. I did a Cook Book & Bottle and while I did not have a seat in the back of the venue the close seats were not much better due to the enormous amount of noise in the pavilion.) Unless they move the high-priced events back to a more private venue like the Odyssey or a restaurant, that's it for me. I do understand that they need the Odyssey for the evening Grand Gathering events which are popular but couldn't daytime events take place there?

I might be spending most of the money I usually spend at WDW to go to the Food Network Wine and Food Festival in New York and book events there. So maybe only one PFTS and I usually do two. And no events over $100 unless a signature dinner (of the old style) appears on the schedule for one of my Florida weekends.

Colette Peters was the one that made me swear off the Sweet Sunday - not her fault. She is not a baker - she is a cake decorator. Other than the cookie the offerings were good but there was no discussion of her specialty. She did no demonstration of cake decoration techniques - I assume she was constricted to the baking part for this particular event. I wanted to see her decorate something.

Because a friend wanted to, attended her free demo the next day. Not only did we get a pretty big slice of one of the same cakes presented during Sweet Sunday, but the free demo was about cake decoration techniques. It was far more informative than the expensive event. And no stunt cookie.
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Old 06-11-2009, 10:23 AM   #97
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I agree - the cookies were pretty inedible! LOL! While I was disappointed that she didn't decorate cakes during her Sweet Sundays demo, we still enjoyed her presentation. I agree, the free demo was better. I don't know why she didn't just decorate a cake for her Sweet Sundays...

Having the cooking demonstrations in the Festival Center doesn't bother me as much as you and Brenda. It is a shame that anyone standing outside the area can hear the whole demo for free... but I'll still attend the ones I'm interested in.

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Colette Peters was the one that made me swear off the Sweet Sunday - not her fault. She is not a baker - she is a cake decorator. Other than the cookie the offerings were good but they were not her specialty. She did no demonstration of cake decoration techniques - I assume she was constricted to the baking part for this particular event. I wanted to see her decorate something.

Because a friend wanted to, attended her free demo the next day. Not only did we get a pretty big slice of one of the same cakes presented during Sweet Sunday, but the free demo was about cake decoration techniques. And no stunt cookie.
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Old 06-11-2009, 10:29 AM   #98
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Hi everyone! We're heading down for our first F&WF this year. We happened to be in DL/DCA last year for their F&WF, but from what I hear Epcot's is very different.

Our best friends are getting married on Oct. 24th and then instead of having a traditional wedding reception, they're just buying everyone tickets for PFTS that night! I'm so excited to check it out.

Instead of a bridesmaid dress, I'm just wearing a black cocktail dress for the ceremony. Do you think this would be too dressy to wear for PFTS? And what do the guys usually wear? DH is wearing a suit instead of a tux for the wedding, but I think the chances of him wearing a full suit for the entire day is pretty slim. My parents are going to the wedding as well, and they keep asking me what would be appropriate for PFTS.

Thanks!
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Old 06-11-2009, 10:39 AM   #99
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Hi everyone! We're heading down for our first F&WF this year. We happened to be in DL/DCA last year for their F&WF, but from what I hear Epcot's is very different.

Our best friends are getting married on Oct. 24th and then instead of having a traditional wedding reception, they're just buying everyone tickets for PFTS that night! I'm so excited to check it out.

Instead of a bridesmaid dress, I'm just wearing a black cocktail dress for the ceremony. Do you think this would be too dressy to wear for PFTS? And what do the guys usually wear? DH is wearing a suit instead of a tux for the wedding, but I think the chances of him wearing a full suit for the entire day is pretty slim. My parents are going to the wedding as well, and they keep asking me what would be appropriate for PFTS.

Thanks!
Hello! What a GREAT idea for a wedding .. wow - if only we could have pulled that one off



My husband wears a nice shirt and pants. He never does the full tie and coat and most people are dressed the same. We should be at that PFTS so we will be on the look out for your group! Have fun!
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Old 06-11-2009, 10:44 AM   #100
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I will attend the free demos in the Festival Center if it's fixed up like last year - but I won't be paying for any. Unless Alton Brown shows up. But he'll be in New York...I plan to sign up to see him there... I also agree with Brenda that the Festival Center show kitchen was erratic and the Odyssey one seemed to be far more consistent for some reason.

Upon dropping sunglasses on the floor in the demo area the last weekend of the Festival it sort of became obvious that they apparently didn't vacuum under the tables for the full run of the festival, either. That was also a bit of a turnoff. But free food is free food.
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Old 06-11-2009, 10:49 AM   #101
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Upon dropping sunglasses on the floor in the demo area the last weekend of the Festival it sort of became obvious that they apparently didn't vacuum under the tables for the full run of the festival, either. That was also a bit of a turnoff. But free food is free food.





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Old 06-11-2009, 10:55 AM   #102
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Hate to be the voice of dissent... but we really love Sweet Sundays! Last year we went to Gale Gand's demo and it was wonderful! She's an amazing pastry chef and we are so lucky to have her close to home in Chicago! Here are some pics of the event...

The table set up in the Chef's Showplace in the Festival Center. The wine glasses were full of Asti Prosecco and it flowed freely the entire event.

Great photos! How did I miss these before? I have not done a sweet sundays since I am not a dessert person but this looks fun! Thanks for posting these!
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Old 06-11-2009, 11:02 AM   #103
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Let the planning begin!

I promised myself I would check on this thread regularly so I could keep up with the reading of posts BUT I'm already 7 pages behind!

Found this today .... don't know who Keith Snow is but it looks like he'll be at the Festival. Someone out there may be a fan ...

Harvest Eating Seasonal Cooking Made Easy

Also I read somewhere that Gale Gand is not returning this year but her culinary partner (and ex-husband) Rick Tramonto will be at the festival.
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Old 06-11-2009, 11:33 AM   #104
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Thanks for all of the advise -- sounds like F&W events are not much of a way to get a way by yourself for an evening.

We have eaten at a number of the signature restaurants in WDW and have enjoyed a great meal at all but Narcossee's. We would love to do V&A but thought it might be a bit expensive for us on this trip since we are planning to spoil our son, after all the purpose of this trip is to celebrate his adoption with our friends and family. Still, we wanted 1 evening to ourselves -- and were thinking F&W event but now I'm wondering if that is a good choice.

How would rate V&A to Citricos (another restaurant we have not been to) for price, food, experience? If it helps we do have the TiW card.

Thanks for your advice again, its good to hear from fellow foodies!

Kathie
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Old 06-11-2009, 12:01 PM   #105
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Thanks for all of the advise -- sounds like F&W events are not much of a way to get a way by yourself for an evening.

We have eaten at a number of the signature restaurants in WDW and have enjoyed a great meal at all but Narcossee's. We would love to do V&A but thought it might be a bit expensive for us on this trip since we are planning to spoil our son, after all the purpose of this trip is to celebrate his adoption with our friends and family. Still, we wanted 1 evening to ourselves -- and were thinking F&W event but now I'm wondering if that is a good choice.

How would rate V&A to Citricos (another restaurant we have not been to) for price, food, experience? If it helps we do have the TiW card.

Thanks for your advice again, its good to hear from fellow foodies!

Kathie
Citricos is very good but not in the same class as V&A.

V&A is a five-star dining experience and your husband will need to wear a jacket and tie if you're going to dine there. The food and service are amazing and they do accept the TiW card, so that 20% discount adds up pretty fast there. It's a wonderful place to go for romantic dining and to celebrate something as terrific as what you have to celebrate!

Citricos is one of the best signature restaurants on property ... they also provide a great meal with great service, just not at the level you'd get next door at V&A.

Some of it probably depends on your budget and just how formal you want dinner to be.
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