Disney has a Food & Wine Fest — here's what you need to eat

Food, craft beer and wine at Disney California Adventure Park
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Disneyland Park and Disney California Adventure Park have really stepped up their food game in the last couple years. Now they have designated food guides for holiday season and special events like last year’s Pixar Fest and the current ‘Get Your Ears On’ celebration of Mickey’s 90th birthday. 

So it’s no surprise that the 2019 Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival is a huge draw. It happens at DCA every spring, and this year’s festival runs March 1 through April 23. 

DCA Food & Wine Festival is March 1-April 23

What that means: In addition to all the park food, you have 16 more booths to choose from when hunger strikes. They're spread throughout the park, each with a different California theme. Your theme park admission ticket gets you into the DCA Food & Wine Festival.

The Sip & Savor Pass gives you eight tabs to redeem for specific dishes/drinks at each booth

Diehard foodies should get a Sip & Savor Pass ($54). This gives you eight tabs to redeem at the different kiosks for various food and drink items — so at $6.75 per tab, you can make the most of your pass by choosing some of the more expensive items. Except for a few dishes like the $12.49 Buffalo-style roasted turkey leg that come in only one regular portion size, though, most dishes will be smaller portions.

Here's the official entryway. Pick up a Tasting Passport to check out photos of the featured food and drinks 

With more than 75 dishes and drinks to choose from, it’s important to prioritize your food list, especially if you're on a tight schedule. Here are the must-haves at this year’s DCA Food & Wine Festival.  

Golden Dreams

Where: Close to Grizzly River Run 

Anaheim chile relleno bites with salsa verde, $6.75

Similar to arancini, these deep-fried morsels are topped with a sour cream drizzle and come in a pool of salsa verde. The salsa adds a good heat. If you want something sweet after, be sure you get … 

Anaheim chile relleno bites with salsa verde, $6.75

Chocolate-peanut-caramel parfait, $5.50

Imagine a deconstructed Snickers candy bar: This parfait has layers of chocolate, caramel and peanuts and sea salt crystals on top. It’s the perfect salty-sweet treat with contrasting textures and flavors in each bite. The crunchy peanuts, silky chocolate, sticky caramel and slightly salty aftertaste will leave you wanting more. 

Chocolate-peanut-caramel parfait, $5.50. Check out those layers

 

Garlic Kissed

 

Where: Paradise Pier

Creamy mac and cheese with garlic bread crumble, $7.75

This gooey, garlicky mac and cheese is sure to please any cheese lover. Toasted garlic bread crumbles on top enhance the savory flavor and are a crunchy contrast to the creamy noodles. 

Creamy mac and cheese with garlic bread crumble, $7.75

Chocolate crunch cake, $5.50

This chocolate truffle mousse dome has a vanilla bean crème brulee filling — it's sufficiently chocolaty, but the bottom crunch layer is lacking. So it's not the best chocolate cake ever, but it is the only food item with the DCA Food & Wine Festival edible logo on top. So if you’re eating for Instagram, be sure to snag this. 

Note: If this dessert looks familiar, it’s a smaller version of the Mickey Mouse Club Hat dessert currently featured at Disneyland’s Jolly Holiday Bakery Cafe.

Chocolate crunch cake, $5.50

Sonoma Terrace

Where: Pacific Wharf 

Rose sparkling wine with cotton candy garnish, $13

A festival exclusive, this rose sparkling wine is as extra as it gets. The cotton candy addition ups the sweetness: You can get your sugar rush by eating the candy separately or letting it dissolve into your sparkling wine. 

Sonoma Terrace has an expanded menu with mixed drinks like lemon sorbet mimosas and fruit punch mimosas with a cherry garnish just for the food & wine festival. 

Rose sparkling wine with cotton candy garnish, $13

 

 

California Craft Brews

Where: Pacific Wharf

Pepperoni pizza egg rolls with marinara and pesto sauce, $7

If Totino’s Pizza Rolls are the first thing you think of, rest assured that this is a more elevated version. These egg rolls are filled with pepperoni and cheese, with one doused in hearty marinara and the other served in pesto sauce. They’re truly standard pepperoni-pizza-meets-spring-rolls, but I love the crunchy shell and comforting pizza flavors.  

Pepperoni pizza egg rolls with marinara and pesto sauce, $7

 

Festival Beer Garden

 

Where: Paradise Pier

Housemade beer marshmallows, $4.25

These beer-infused marshmallows can only be found at this particular cart. They're covered with chocolate and topped with pretzels to deliver that salty-sweet flavor. They're even more extra because there’s a luscious caramel layer underneath. 

Housemade beer marshmallows, $4.25

 

Paradise Garden Grill

 

Where: Paradise Pier

Beer-battered cod with steak fries and spiced remoulade, $11.99 regular entrée

If you like fish and chips, you’ll love this. The cod has a delectable, golden-brown, lightly battered exterior, while the inside is moist, flaky and fresh. The flavorful spiced remoulade is the perfect dipping sauce. You'll want to use every bit of it for dipping both cod and fries. 

Note: This is the Sip & Savor Pass portion; the dish is also available as a regular entrée for $11.99 at Paradise Garden Grill.

This is the smaller Sip & Savor Pass tasting portion of the beer-battered cod with steak fries and spiced remoulade

Impossible no “meat” ball submarine with marinara sauce, $11.99 regular entree

No meat? No way! If ‘Impossible’ weren’t part of the name, I don’t think I would have been able to tell this was a meatless meatball sub. It tastes like a legit meatball, and there’s tons of thick, hearty marinara sauce on top. Do you see the hidden Mickey on the bread?

This is the smaller Sip & Savor Pass tasting portion of the Impossible no 'meat' ball sub

Buffalo-style roasted turkey leg, $12.49

Disneyland turkey leg lovers, take note. This doesn’t count as part of the Sip & Savor pass, but if you’re a fan of those jumbo roasted turkey legs, this is a must. It comes with celery slaw and blue cheese crumbles. This is the park’s cheeky twist on buffalo wings, and that sauce is spicy. The celery slaw is refreshing, but it's also doused in the buffalo sauce. Your only respite is the creamy blue cheese crumbles on top. This could be easily shared among two or three people, but you’ll need a fork and knife — things get really messy with all that buffalo sauce.

Buffalo-style roasted turkey leg with celery slaw and crumbled blue cheese, $12.49. Yes, it comes with the knife sticking out of it

 

Tip: You can ask for extra blue cheese to balance out the spicy buffalo sauce. This turkey leg is also slightly cheaper than the ones you’ll find at the turkey leg cart in Disneyland

 

The roasted turkey leg is as big as it looks. Here it is for scale