Walking around Epcot can be exhausting but luckily there is no shortage of places to refuel. From snack carts, quick service, to table service restaurants from around the world. No matter what you’re in the mood for Epcot serves it. You can try something from another country or something home grown!
While my husband and I were in Disney World in July we spent a lot of time in Epcot. It helps when we stayed right next-door at the Boardwalk, we walked into Epcot everyday, entering the park between France and the United Kingdom. On our last day before we headed to the airport, and I begged to stay a little longer, we were walking around Epcot and wanted to get a bite to eat. I didn’t have any reservations but that didn’t stop us from trying out a table service restaurant that he hadn’t been to. We got halfway around the world and ended up in Japan where we decided to give it a shot.
The Japan pavilion is an often-overlooked dining location. There are multiple locations to dine at in Japan that offer unique dining experiences you can’t get at the other country pavilions. Japan offers a snack location called Kabuki Café, a quick service location called Katsura Grill, and two table service locations called Teppan Edo and Tokyo Dining. Katsura Grill is a fun little place to go to grab a bite to eat and sit down in a quiet location away from the hustle and bustle of the park, but we didn’t eat there this time. We decided to head up the steps to Teppan Edo. There is a hostess stand at the bottom of the steps where you can check in if you have a reservation, or set one up if you would like to eat there. We went around noon and had no wait at all.
Japan’s table service is unique, both Teppan Edo and Tokyo Dining are underneath the same room. When your table is ready you head up the stairs and a hostess will great you. When you dine at Teppan Edo they lead you to a table of eight with a grill in the center of the table. If you are a party smaller than eight they will sit you with another party to fill the table. The hostess gives you a hot towel to wash your hands. It was a nice way to start a meal, sitting down, relaxing, and getting out of the heat. When your server comes they take your drink order and food order. Teppan Edo is a hibachi grill. So you get veggies, rice, and a choice of protein all cooked to order in front of you. The nice thing is that they can accommodate food allergies!
I don’t get sushi often because I can’t eat it out unless I bring my own soy sauce; yes believe it or not soy sauce has gluten in it. When I asked about gluten free options a manager came out to tell me all of my options. Not only do they have gluten free soy sauce, but their yum yum sauce is also gluten free! We decided on getting a California Roll to share before the chef came out to cook. All of the veggies and proteins are gluten free, however the beef rice and noodles are not. Instead they have plain rice that is gluten free. We decided on having Nihonbashi, which was chicken and steak as our entrée. I was most impressed with the chef. When he came out he told the table that he would be cooking my meal first to ensure that I did not get sick.
Despite my meal being cooked from start to finish before anyone else’s, he still made it entertaining. The chef interacted with us all the while doing tricks and cooking our meal to perfection. He used gluten free soy sauce, made sure the surface was clean, and didn’t touch any gluten with his utensils while cooking my meal. I got to experience hibachi while being sure that I would not get sick after the delicious meal.
Walking through Epcot again and again can make you extremely hungry. Even when you don’t have a reservation you can still get a great meal, even at a table service location. When you’re on vacation why not try some food experiences that you can’t have while at home. If you have food allergies you shouldn’t be stuck eating the same old same. Epcot is the best place to try new things and they’re just a few steps away.
Until next time my hungry friends, have faith and trust in all the Disney chefs, and let Tinkerbell sprinkle some new experiences on your next vacation.
Jess was born and raised on Long Island, New York but once college began so did her adventures. She’s lived in Florida, Wisconsin, and now South Carolina. Her family is part of the Disney Vacation Club and has been visiting since she was a little girl, and continuously goes every year. Besides being a big Disney fan she has also been a Disney Cast Member working in Magic Kingdom, and she counts it as one of the most magical experiences. She worked with everyone’s favorite elephant Dumbo, Cinderella’s Carousel, and Mickey’s Philharmagic. Jess has also visited Disneyland, Disney’s Vero Beach Resort, and gone on two Disney Cruises. She has so many great memories from Disney besides running half marathons and 5ks, birthday parties, and family reunions. If asked where she would want to go it is almost always Disney, and when asked why, it is almost always because she can eat awesome gluten free food! And it doesn’t hurt that there is always faith, trust, and pixie dust with magic in the air!