I am breaking up the blog posts based on Disney park. Our first stop was Epcot. Since the first day was also a travel day, we were at Epcot a half day. To be honest, this was plenty of time for us. We were pretty tired from our 6am flight. Our son said he was not tired, but sometimes behavior tells another story!
When we got off the plane we hopped on Disney’s Magical Express. That is their shuttle that takes you to your hotel from the airport. It was great because we did not have to wait to pick up our luggage. Disney does that for you. Your bag appears in your room at the hotel. Magic! Knowing this, you want to have any snacks or essentials on your carry on.
We stayed at the Caribbean Beach Resort. I have to say the property was so much nicer than my expectation. Great place for kids. They had multiple pools, entertainment for the kids all day long and the rooms were very quiet. The beds were not that comfy, but I feel most hotels do not offer a great sleep.
After seeing our room, our first stop was to the hotel’s restaurant. There was a food court in the main building. It was still pretty close to breakfast time, so my first gf meal was an omelet with some potatoes and coffee. It was not hard to find something to eat at the hotel. Bonus!
This was just our filler meal, since we had a fun day planned at Epcot and our first sit down dinner at The Coral Reef at the park.
I forgot to add a the little side story here. The first thing I did after check-in as fall off a curb at the hotel and sprain my ankle. I am not sure if I let my family know how bad it hurt. They saw me fall and I don’t think I cried (I wanted to). I just did not want to ruin our trip by resting my ankle in the hotel. So I just sucked it up and walked on it all day.
By 2 pm the pain was so bad that I had to sit in China (At Epcot) and let the boys have their fun. Since my husband is pretty awesome, he knew what would help me. He found a vendor that offered 2 ciders on draft! He got both. So he saved the day. The ciders did not fix the pain, but it did prevent me from caring that much about it.
Since this is a food blog, the location of the ciders was in England, just across from where Peter Pan/and Captain Hook topiaries were. Near the British style phone booths. One of the ciders was Magner’s Pear and the other one’s name is escaping me today. They were cold and amazing. (Yes I tried both!)
I heard there are a lot of places to eat snacks around Epcot, but since we had an early dinner reservation we did not have a chance to eat our way around the countries. Maybe next time. We just focused on a few of our Fastpass rides for most of the day. I did manage to get a moroccan mint tea. It was refreshing.
At 6:30 we headed over to Coral Reef for dinner.
The restaurant is located near the Nemo ride. The restaurant itself was very cool. The entire wall was a floor to ceiling aquarium. While we ate were were able to look at all the fish and towards the end of dinner there was a team of scuba divers in the tank. They waved to us and that was pretty cool for our son.
Before we ordered, a manager came to the table because we made note during the reservation that we had a gluten free diner. He asked if I had a chance to look over the menu and had an idea of what I would like to eat. They take your general preference and then just make adjustments to the meal to make it safe.
I ordered the special. It was a sustainable fish served with chorizo and potatoes. The manager said he would bring me out a gluten free bread too.
The bread came out with a flag on it that said allergy. This was a good sign. The server also gave me my own butter to prevent cross contamination. I was so happy. I was the dork taking photos of her food. (For the readers!) The bread was good. Later in the week I did have some bread I did not like, but I will write about that next time.
The main dish came out quickly. I started eating right away and my overall impression was that it was very tasty. The fish itself was one of the best pieces of fish I have had in a while. The potatoes were average, but the chorizo made me eat them all. I have a soft spot for chorizo.
My husband had the steak and that also seemed to be a good choice. He always shares his food so I was able to taste it. Our son had some very basic kids food. Since it was vacation, I tend to just let him order whatever he wants, knowing he will eat his body weight in mac and cheese.
Day one at Epcot was a gluten free success. I wish I was not in pain all day. I am sure I would have walked around and discovered more. For more info on Coral Reef:https://disneyworld.disney.go.com/dining/epcot/coral-reef-restaurant/
If you are wondering about the park itself (and not the GF aspect): Of all the parks, I found Epcot to be geared more towards adults. They had great things to look at, but not as many rides for the little kids. We had a lot of fun in the aquarium and the Chevy Test Track. A lot of people told us to go on Soarin’ but the wait was 2 hours and they did not have a Fast Pass for that. So next time for sure!