Traveling Mamas

Inspiring you to explore our world

  • Picture yourself at Walt Disney World, pushing a stroller around, possibly on a multi-generational family trip, and you find nap time is quickly approaching – for everyone. You just want a little Me Time. There’s nothing wrong with that. Parents need to stay sane and take advantage of down time, or even treat themselves to a visit to the parks WITHOUT the kids. Family travel can get crazy, so why not
    ask a family member to watch the kids, giving you and your spouse a few moments of adult time.

    Did you know there are nearly 400 places to dine across Walt Disney World Resort? And that’s not counting the portable food carts. In all, more than 6,000 different food items are available. And chances are, if the restaurants aren’t in the Magic Kingdom, they just might have an adult beverages on the menu for you to enjoy. If wine is your poison of choice, then you’ll want to know that more than 600 sommeliers have been awarded the Court of Master Sommelier Introductory Certificate at Walt Disney World Resort, with more than 300 sommeliers currently in restaurants.

    With so many restaurants and dining choices, where should you go for that “special” drink? Here are just of few of our top choices for a cocktail, beer, or wine while at Walt Disney World.

    Epcot’s World Showcase 

    United Kingdom – The Rose and Crown Pub and Dining room brings visitors into Victorian England with its etched glass panels, dark mahogany bar and authentic dart board. If you are looking for hearty ale, this place offers specially designed ale warmer can heat your Guinness to 55 degrees, should that be your preference.

    Mexico – The pavilion features a festive and colorful celebration of the beauty and culture of Mexico that is fun for guests of all ages. “Gran Fiesta Tour Starring the Three Caballeros” is an excursion by tour boat through the vibrant, eye-filling sights and lively music of Mexico. If you’re interested in margaritas, you should check out ThemeParkMom’s review of inventive margaritas at La Hacienda de San Angel, a new restaurant in EPCOT.

    Japan – In the Matsu-no-ma Lounge, visitors see a majestic view of Future World across the lagoon while sampling sushi, Japanese pickled vegetables, tempura and exotic specialty drinks.

    Germany – Biergarten, an indoor German “courtyard” featuring a German Oktoberfest buffet. At lunch and dinner time, yodelers, dancers and other lederhosen-clad musicians perform an Oktoberfest dinner show. Guests are invited onstage to join in the musical fun. The wine shop nearby offers samples of Ice Wine for a few bucks. Definitely worth a try.

    French Champagne and Wine cart at EPCOT World ShowcaseFrance – Want a glass of vino but don’t want to wait in the long line inside the wine shop? Across from the front of France there is a wine cart serving Champagne, wines, and frozen blends.

    Want more? Check out our extensive list of wine, beer, and cocktails at Epcot’s World Showcase.

    Other Venues at Disney with Alcohol

    Victoria Falls at Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge – Down a flight of stairs from the lobby, this mezzanine lounge serves wine and spirits imported from Africa, including Windhoek beer from Namibia and Imoya Brandy from South Africa. The specialty drink is a Victoria Falls Mist, with tangerine, melon and banana liqueurs. Animal Kingdom Lodge has the largest offering of South African wines anywhere in the US. Be sure to check out Jiko, The Cooking Place, too!

    The Wave at Disney’s Contemporary Resort – Trendy cocktails are served for breakfast, lunch and dinner. Start the day with a Pomegranate Splash (vodka, pomegranate liqueur, cranberry juice and soda water) or the Ultimate Bloody Mary (organic vodka, Bloody Mary mix and a dash of red chili sauce). The Pure-tini mixes organic vodka with organic mango and passion fruit liqueur. The Antioxidant Cocktail features wild berry vodka, black raspberry liqueur, açai juice with agave, lychee, aloe juice and freshly squeezed lemon juice.

    Tune-In Lounge at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, next door to 50’s Prime Time Cafe, looks like a family den from the ’50s, with black-and-white TVs and campy retro furniture. You can choose kitschy drinks from “Dad’s Liquor Cabinet” such as Uncle Tim’s Melon Margarita, Scooter’s Long Island Iced Tea or an Electric Lemonade. Beer and wine is offered, too. My personal favorite is a Magical Star. Check out this video of inside Tune-In Lounge at Disney’s Hollywood Studios, as part of our Cocktail Series.

    Dawa Bar adjacent to Tusker House Restaurant at Disney’s Animal Kingdom – Sit in the shade and sip a hard-to-find Tusker Beer from Africa or Safari Amber, brewed just for Disney’s Animal Kingdom and Disney’s Animal Kingdom Lodge. South African wines are on the drink menu, too, along with cocktails like Lost on Safari with rum and fruit juices.

    Dawa Bar at Disney's Animal Kingdom Lodge

    Mizner’s at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa – A live orchestra plays nostalgic Big Band sounds just outside the doors of this lounge tucked away on the second floor of the hotel. The lounge’s namesake is architect Addison Mizner, whose designs launched a “Florida Renaissance” in the 1920s, so the sophisticated drinks are apropos: champagnes, caipirinhas, mint juleps and cosmopolitans, along with nine vodkas, seven different single malt scotch whiskeys and after-dinner cognacs and ports.

    There are more than 50 lounges in Walt Disney World hotels and three theme parks (no alcohol in Magic Kingdom. Again I stress. No alcohol in Magic Kingdom), making this list just a sampling of the many great place for big kids like parents to have their own magic time at Walt Disney World. If there’s a place you’d like us to know about, be sure to leave a comment, helping our readers discover new places to sample adult beverages.

    If you find yourself wandering around looking for a place to buy alcohol at Disney, all you have to do is ask one of the friendly cast members, who can point you in the right direction.  Be sure to drink plenty of water while you’re in the parks also, as alcohol is dehydrating. Designate a driver or take advantage of Disney’s resort transportation. Cheers!

    All Disney venues selling alcohol have a limit of two beverages per sale per person to limit overindulgence on property. Remember, cocktails can be fun, but this is a family friendly destination and not a place to act inappropriate.

     

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  • Fall is my favorite time of year at Walt Disney World. The crowds wane, the temperature drops, and the booths come out around World Showcase for the EPCOT International Food & Wine Festival.

    This year, the folks at the Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort put together a new event that was a great compliment to the festival: the Food & Wine Classic.

    I thought it was a great success, with lots of interesting booths and, of course, great food and cocktails. One booth in particular was really capturing the crowd’s attention – not a surprise since it was serving smoking drinks!

    That’s right, smoking, because the Ketel One drinks at the Modern Mixology booth were being made with liquid nitrogen. Take a look at the short video at right to see the action.

    The drinks — Chocolate Martini “Dippin’ Shots” and Nitro Sangria — were more than gimmicks; they were actually really good.

    The Swan and Dolphin has already scheduled the next Food & Wine Classic, for Oct. 7-8, 2011. This year, you could buy individual tastings or a wristband for $50 that got you unlimited samples and a seminar. Judging by the amount of interesting things to try, I think the wristband was well worth it.

    The resort also offered some packages that included a hotel room, food and wine seminars, and Food & Wine Classic wristbands, so be on the lookout for those specials next year.

    If you’re interested in more of the creative cocktails offered at Walt Disney World, check out Cajun Mama’s post on finding alcohol at Walt Disney World or take a look at the new margaritas at La Hacienda restaurant.

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  • La Hacienda de San Angel, EPCOT’s newest table service restaurant, is now in soft opening at Walt Disney World.

    I was invited to the grand opening celebration last week, where I got to sample the food at Hacienda de San Angel and take a look at the new Mexican restaurant’s decor.

    But I was especially excited to try out the restaurant’s margaritas. CajunMama has written before about the many places to find alcohol at Walt Disney World, and this new restaurant is a great addition to that list.

    Hacienda de San Angel has a “tequila ambassador” on staff to tell you about q7 premium tequilas available. There’s also a tequila flight to try if you’re interested in sampling.

    The premium, handcrafted margaritas come in six flavors at La Hacienda de San Angel:

    The classic margarita was probably the best version of a margarita I have ever had. It’s made with El Mayor premium silver tequila, with orange, lime and agave flavors.

    I also tried the Mango Blueberry Basil margarita, which is mixed with the same tequila, as well as coconut rum and orange juice. This one was very tasty, but there is a lot going on here. The basil flavor got lost in all the fruit.

    The Rosita margarita was my favorite. It is made with rose syrup, orange liqueur and fresh lime. There were fresh rose petals in the drink – so festive!

    I did not taste the remaining three margaritas, but they sound just as interesting:

    • Lime raspberry, with those flavors as well as agave nectar and orange liqueur.
    • Orange mango fire, with ginger and Tabasco.
    • Coffee, with Kahlua, Mezcal and ice cream.

    If tequila isn’t your thing, there’s a nice wine list at La Hacienda de San Angel, too, with all the wines coming from South America.

    La Hacienda de San Angel is taking reservations starting Oct. 15. The new Mexican restaurant overlooks the World Showcase lagoon, making it a great place to watch the Illuminations fireworks show each evening at EPCOT.

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  • Every year I look forward to New Orleans’ most spirited event – Tales of the Cocktail. It’s an annual event held each July and is a festival of cocktails, cuisine, and culture in New Orleans. This is THE place to meet mixologists, authors, bartenders, chefs, and designers from all over the world. What I enjoy most about TOTC is the chance to attend tasting rooms, the dinners, the competitions, and the seminars. It is produced by the New Orleans Culinary and Cultural Preservation Society.

    Mimosa at Monteleone's Carousel Bar by Shannon Hurst LaneOne aspect of Tales that I love is where it’s held – The Hotel Monteleone, a AAA Four Diamond award winning hotel (and the largest hotel in the French Quarter). This iconic hotel has had such fabulous lodgers as Truman Capote, Ernest Hemingway, Tennessee Williams, and many modern day celebrities. My favorite way to start a day at Tales of the Cocktail is with a mimosa at the famous Carousel Bar.

    I’ll be staying at the Hotel Monteleone this week and one of the fun events being held during Tales of the Cocktail is the Hotel Monteleone TOTC 2010 Twitter contest. I’ve seen hotels do lots of Twitter contests in the past, but what’s innovative about this one is that the Hotel Monteleone is targeting tweeters who will already be at the property, allowing them a chance to win a credit towards their current booking during Tales or coupons for drinks at the Carousel Bar. Don’t worry if you aren’t staying there, the hotel still wants you to play along and is offering the prize for a future stay if you aren’t already booked for this event.

    Be sure to check out all the details for participating in this fun way to learn the history of the Hotel Monteleone and share this scavenger hunt adventure via tweets. Contest ends at 12pm CST on Sunday, July 25, 2010 at the commencement of this year’s Tales of the Cocktail.

    Tasting room at Tales of the Cocktail 2009 by Shannon Hurst LaneTales of the Cocktail is not only fun, but educational. After attending last year I took an interest in mixology and have even started making my own limoncello at home. Mixology is art and science rolled into one that can make any gathering THAT much more exciting. Do you have cocktail recipes on your site? Have you attended Tales of the Cocktail?

    Contest Rules: Tales of the Cocktail 2010 Twitter Contest | Hotel Monteleone

    Twitter: @HotelMonteleone  and @TOTC

    Get the spirited scoop through the Tales Blog.

    Disclaimer: I attend Tales of the Cocktail each year to provide editorial content and to entice readers to make plans for future attendance. My pass is provided through comped media access. I actively participate in various tastings and presentations which possibly lead to a happy disposition while attending.

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  • The Traveling Mamas wish you a safe and Happy New Year! Remember to have fun, but don’t drink and drive.

    Since we’ve got celebrating and alcoholic beverages on the mind(s), we thought we’d close 2008 with a few photos of some of our favorite drinks we’ve sampled on our travels this year. Bottoms up!

    Kauai Mai Tais (Donnali) by MudslideMama

    Caicos Mama (Ocean Club Resorts in Providenciales, Turks & Caicos) by DesertMama

    Sexy Sangria (Karen's Place, Bucerias, Mexico) by MountainMama

    Robbitini by Cajunmama

    Robbitini by Cajunmama (At CajunMama's Aunt's house in Huntsville, AL)

    Where ever you are in the world, raise a glass and make a toast to good things in 2009 for us all!

    Champagne for us all

    Champagne for us all

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