Drinking Around the World Showcase: A Guide
For many adults visiting Walt Disney World, a trip is just not complete without a day dedicated solely to drinking around the World Showcase at EPCOT. For those of you who might not know what this means exactly, “Drinking Around the World,” as it is more commonly known, is where adults sample at least one alcoholic beverage from each country represented in the World Showcase area of EPCOT in one, usually, day-long visit to the World Showcase. As there are 11 countries represented in the World Showcase, Drinking Around the World is not for the faint of heart. However, if you pace yourself, and enjoy all beverage and entertainment offerings of the pavilions, then you will surely set yourself up for a most enjoyable day in one of the most beautiful theme parks in the world.
Please join me as I take you country by country on an “adults-only” tour of EPCOT’s World Showcase.
Since I love the frozen margarita stand located in the Mexico pavilion, my husband and I usually start our tour here. Visit the kiosk and order a Fiesta margarita, which is a frozen concoction worthy of a Jimmy Buffet song. The tall glass comes rimmed with salt and is filled in thirds with lime, strawberry and mango margaritas. This refreshing drink will go down quick, and is a great way to start your tour.
However, if you are feeling extra adventurous, head into the Mexico pavilion for a bonus drink on your tour at the ever popular La Cava del Tequila. This tequila bar has gained a cult following in the few years it has been open, and rightfully so! Here, start your tour off extra saucy, by sharing a tequila flight or two with your group. Take a moment here to linger at the bar, and you might get some complimentary chips and salsa to provide you sustenance as you head to your next stop: Norway.
The next pavilion on our tour takes us to chilly Norway. Bundle up and purchase a Carlsberg Beer from the drink cart at the front of the pavilion. This light-bodied Danish pilsner is a unique beer that is sure to be a favorite of even the pickiest beer drinkers. It goes down smooth. Once you finish your beer, head to China.
The China pavilion offers many choices in both drinks and attraction options. Upon arrival, head to the Joy of Tea stand located along the World Showcase Lagoon. In China, it’s time to finally enjoy a genuine cocktail. Joy of Tea doesn’t disappoint with the Peach Snap! (peach schnapps and orange juice) or the Canto Loopy (vodka and cantaloupe juice). However, if you’re looking to really kick you tour up a notch, then you must go with the Tipsy Ducks in Love. While it may look like a Frappuccino to the unknowing eye, the Tipsy Ducks in Love hides quite a hearty serving of bourbon in what is otherwise an iced coffee with whipped cream on top.
Once you’re feeling tipsy, and maybe in love as this is your third or fourth drink, cool off while watching “Reflections of China,” the pavilion’s 360 degree movie exploring all the cultural sites of China. Also, be sure to watch the Dragon Legends Acrobatic show. These students of agility are amazing to watch. However, keep mindful of the time, because it is soon time to head back to mainland Europe for one of the more popular pavilions in the World Showcase: Germany.
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Editor’s Note: Technically the Refreshment Outpost is the next stop while walking around the World Showcase, but it is generally skipped when “Drinking Around the World.” Originally, this area was imagined to be a pavilion celebrating all of the wonders of Africa; however, that never came to pass. As such, since this isn’t a pavilion celebrating a country, nor does the outpost sell a beer that isn’t American, it is safe to skip the outpost.
My husband and I always visit the Germany pavilion, regardless of whether we’re doing a Drink Around the World tour, to grab one of our favorite beers – the Radeberger Pilsner. This beer is a little hard to find though, as it is located within the pavilion building. Head into the pavilion and turn to your right, here you will find the Bier Stand where the Radeberger is located. The Radeberger is a nice, light pilsner. The carbonation gives the beer a refreshing quality that is welcomed in the Florida heat, but it is an all-around tasty beer that is enjoyable no matter the temperature.
On the other hand, a more unique beer to try in the Germany pavilion is the Hovel. This dark, amber ale is somewhat bitter due to the prevalent yeast and hop notes that come through the ale. The caramel taste of the beer goes great with one of the treats from the Karamell-Kuche bakery. The bakery should be a snack stop, or go traditional with a soft pretzel, before you head south to: Italy.
When in Rome, do as the Romans – so it’s time to drink some wine! Head into the Tutto Gusto Wine Cellar for some respite from the Florida heat and for a large selection of Italian wines, beers and cocktails. As Italy is about the halfway point for your tour, Tutto Gusto is a great place to sit and sip awhile as you take a break and rally for the second half of your tour. Here, choose one of the wine flights and share amongst your group. Some flights offer six selections, while others offer three pours. Wine flights are a great way to really taste the wines of the country, and if you are particularly fond of one of them, be sure to purchase a glass for yourself or even a bottle to take home!
One of the cocktails I suggest is the Italian Sangria. This refreshing blend of sweet red table wine and fruit is one of my favorite drinks. While it is not a drink unusual to only EPCOT, sometimes it is nice to drink something familiar. Another suggestion would be either a Rossini or a Bellini. These champagne cocktails are mixed with raspberry or peach puree, respectively.
The beer of choice for many Drinking Around the World is the Birra Moretti. This Italian lager is light bodied, crisp, and refreshing. This beer is a little sweet, which I like, and it goes down smooth. You’ll definitely drink this beer fast without knowing it – so be careful!
Finally, you could head into the Enoteca, which is the wine store on the right of the pavilion nearest to the World Showcase Lagoon, and take your Drinking Around the World tour up a notch by purchasing the World Showcase Wine Walk passport. This passport will give you two 2-oz pours of wine in the Germany, Italy and France pavilions. However, don’t linger long at the tasting counter, because it’s time to head home to the United States.
Sam Adams is the beer offered in the American Adventure pavilion. However, what beer is available to your during your tour will depend on the time of year you are visiting EPCOT. This is because the Fife and Drum Tavern, located to the front, left of the pavilion, serves Sam Adams Seasonal Ale. Your choices will then be Alpine Spring, Summer Ale, Octoberfest, or Winter Lager. Each beer has a typical Sam Adams taste, while being tweaked just enough to offer a slight variation and nod to the time of year depending on the available selection. For example, Summer Ale is light bodied and offers a hint of lemon. While, on the other hand, the Winter Lager is a darker beer that tastes of cinnamon, toffee and spices, which gives you the feeling that you should enjoy this beer next to a fire while it is snowing outside.
If beer isn’t your choice, then be sure to imbibe in the delicious Frozen Red Stag Lemonade. This refreshing, blended drink mixes cherry bourbon and lemonade for a cocktail that is sure to cool you off in the Florida sun. Be sure to take in some of the patriotic entertainment, such as the Fife and Drum Corps, before heading back to the south pacific: Japan.
This is about the time during your tour that you start to feel the effects of six or seven alcoholic drinks. At this point, some folks decide to throw in the towel and promise to finish another today. However, when you continue, be it now or on another day, you will be highly awarded by the sake and the sake cocktails in the Japan pavilion. These cocktails, as well as a wide selection of sake, are located at the Sake Bar located in the of the pavilion courtyard. Once at the bar, skip the Tokyo Sunset (it doesn’t include sake!) and, instead, select one of the sake cocktails. These cocktails consist of sake, which is a fermented rice wine, poured over ice and mixed with one of several flavors. I suggest mixing your sake with green tea for a more traditional cocktail.
For those of you who aren’t feeling adventurous enough to try sake, which is delicious by the way so you should, the Japanese beers offered are all very similar. However, my husband and I prefer the Kirin Ichiban, which is a light bodied beer, over the Sapporo, which is a slightly darker lager. On the other hand, you could always skip the beer and have a sake bomb, warm sake, before hopping continents to: Morocco.
Unfortunately, there isn’t much by way of choice in the Morocco pavilion for your drink. With that being said, I suggest you grab a Casa Beer, which is a light, bubbly beer. Enjoy the beer while you take in the amazing architecture and regain your composure for the next stop and home to the Tour D’Eiffel: France.
The France pavilion is home to one of the best drinks in all of EPCOT: the Grey Goose Slush. There are two versions of this frozen delight: lemon or orange. The lemonade slush is mixed with Grey Goose Citron (lemon flavored vodka), whereas the orange packs a double punch of Grey Goose orange and Grand Marnier.
If another frozen drink isn’t what you’re looking for, then you must try the Kronenbourg 1664. This beer is one of my husband and I’s favorite, and is usually one of the first drinks we get upon arriving at EPCOT. This light beer is fruity and sparkling. The sweet ending to the beer makes it a refreshing stop on your tour. A final selection in France could be a sip of sweet champagne before it is time to catch the Chunnel and head northwest to France’s allies of the Great War: The United Kingdom.
Home to the Rose and Crown Pub, the United Kingdom pavilion is a beer lover’s paradise. I usually go with a Bass when I’m in the Rose and Crown, which is a bitter, light-bodied beer. My husband tends to frequently get a Stella Artois, but will sometimes grab a Harp instead. Both beers are light ales that allow you to taste a hearty, English beer without feeling to full. If you are feeling adventurous, be sure to try one of the Rose and Crown’s mixed pints, which is a mixture of two different beers or ciders in one pint. I prefer the Golden Pub Blend, which is half Stella Artois and half Bass. You could also go with the traditional Black and Tan – half Bass Ale and half Guinness, because no trip to the United Kingdom is complete without having a pint of Guinness.
For those of you averse to hearty English brews, the Rose and Crown does not disappoint with a large selection of cocktails and a full bar of scotches from which to choose. While I cannot begin to tell you which scotch is best, but, let’s be honest, if you came this far on your Drinking Around the World, would you be able to tell, but I can suggest to you the Leaping Leprechaun. This drink will surely make you leap like you’ve found a pot of gold, especially with its hefty shot of Jameson Irish whiskey, one of my favorites.
Once you’ve finished up at the Rose and Crown, it’s time for one last flight across “the pond” to the large, mountainous country at the top of the North American continent: Canada.
Last, but certainly not least, the Canada pavilion offers up many wonderful selections to round out your tour around the world. For your dedication you will be highly rewarded with a Moosehead Lager or a Moosehead Lager Light. This beer is a refreshing and light lager that provides a nice hoppiness to the table. As it is not too strong or heavy, the Moosehead Lager is a perfect end to your Drinking Around the World tour. If you time your tour just right, you are likely to be enjoying this beer while watching Illuminations: Reflections of Earth.
FINAL WORDS OF ADVICE
So there, now that you’ve read this post you are armed and ready to attempt your own drinking tour of EPCOT’s World Showcase. However, before you head out, let me leave you with a few parting words of advice:
- Be sure to drink plenty of water while Drinking Around the World. I’m talking at least one bottle of water every two drinks with maybe a drink or two in between. Alcohol dries you out, and this is especially so in the Florida heat and sun.
- Share drinks with a friend (or a stranger if you’re feeling friendly) if you are looking for the experience of Drinking Around the World, but not the hangover that might come with it.
- Start your tour with some lunch or something of sustenance so as to not be drinking on an empty stomach. Also, grab snacks every couple of pavilions, or grab some yummy Via Napoli pizza in the Italy pavilion, to keep your energy up and to have something to sop up all that alcohol!
- Enjoy the sites and entertainment offered in each pavilion as you make your way around the World Showcase. This will allow you to really enjoy all that the World Showcase has to offer, while encouraging you to sip, not gulp, your alcohol. This will hopefully allow you to travel further on your tour without you having to wave the white flag.
- If you feel like you’ve had just about one too many: STOP. There’s nothing embarrassing about not finishing the tour, but there is maybe something to be embarrassed about if you get sick or have to be asked to leave EPCOT. You can always split your tour into two or three days and still have the same experience. The main theme is to remember to drink responsibly! That should be your mantra!
- Lastly, don’t drive if you have been drinking at all. Period. You can ruin your life and the lives of others in a split second.
Cheers and good luck!