The 17th Annual Epcot International Food & Wine Festivaldoesn’t begin until September 28 but we already have details on what is fresh at the 2012 event.  The culinary event is the highlight of the fall as Disney guests can taste their way around the world, listen to some of their favorite tunes during the Eat to the Beat Concert Series and attend culinary programs geared towards the foodie in all of us.  Purchase your Disney tickets today to enjoy all that available at this showcase of international delights.

Fresh things to do for 2012 include:
Marketplace Chef Tours:  Each Wednesday chefs will host a walking and tasting tour around World Showcase with stops at several international marketplaces.  The tour includes tasting of five marketplace dishes and five beverage items, like beer, wine and cocktails, and the chance to learn a few culinary secrets. 
New Festival Marketplaces:  Two new marketplaces add to Epcot’s Food & Wine Festival this year.  Terra Marketplace offers vegan menu items and the Florida Marketplace serves modern twists on regional flavors.  In total, there are more than 25 ethnic and regional marketplaces. 
More Kid-Friendly Selections:  Newly crafted beverages and menu items are geared towards children and family dining with food items like cheese fondue and beef empanadas featured.
Activities returning to Epcot’s International Food & Wine Festival include:

Eat to the Beat Concert Series:  Eighteen acts will appear during the concert series, including Smash Mouth, Javier Colon, Blue Traveler, Boyz II Men and Sister Hazel, among others.  For the complete Eat to the Beat Concert schedule, click the schedule link. 

HGTV Stars:  HGTV Design Stars will be making appearances ever Friday, Saturday, and Sunday during the festival and will focus on home entertaining. 

Celebrity Chefs:  Renowned chefs Robert Irvine and Rock Harper share their talents during culinary demonstrations, as well chefs such as Jamie Deen, Andrew Zimmern, Buddy Valastro, and Gale Gand.
Festival Welcome Center:  Home to a champagne and wine bar, educational wine seminars and celebrity chef book signings, the Festival Welcome Center also hosts culinary demonstrations. 
Reserved Culinary Events:  Special culinary programs include presentations by winemakers, elegant dinners, luncheons, seminars and wine paring schools. 
Party for the Senses: Sample great food from famous chefs, 50 wines and beers and live entertainment.  Tasting events are scheduled for October 6, 13, 20 and November 3 from 7:30-10pm.

More than 270 chefs will appear during Epcot’s Food and Wine Festival, conducting culinary demonstrations and hosting dinners and tasting events.  There will be around 12 dishes that will be completely new to the World Showcase Marketplace Booths this year.  Over the course of the Festival, there will be 1,200 beer and wine seminars scheduled with complimentary samples.

Be sure to pick up a complimentary Marketplace Discovery Passport so you can get it stamped at each marketplace visited.
Epcot admission grants you access to the Authentic Taste seminars, HGTV seminars, special book signings, Eat to the Beat Concert Series, cultural adventures and all the rides, entertainment and attractions available at the Epcot theme park. For some of the special dining experiences and seminars there is an additional cost. The festival lasts through November 12.