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July 22, 2013

Disney’s Oldest Parade - Electrical Water Pageant

Gary Cruise banner

Walt Disney World has plenty of parades. The Magic Kingdom currently has the "Celebrate A Dream Come True" parade every afternoon at 3:00 and the "Main Street Electrical Parade" at 9:00 and 11:00. Disney's Animal Kingdom features the "Jammin' Jungle Parade" at 3:45

Over the years there have been many themed parades at each of the Disney parks but the undisputed grand-daddy of all parades is the Electrical Water Pageant which sails the waters of Bay Lake and the Seven Seas Lagoon. It has been running every night (weather permitting) since October 26, 1971. There have been a few subtle changes over the past 42 years, but it is still as captivating as it was the first time I watched it in 1977.

One of our favourite ways to end our day at Disney's Fort Wilderness Resort and Campground is to head to the beach and watch the nightly performance of the Electrical Water Pageant.

We try to arrive a bit early, find a comfy seat on the patio beside the marina and wait until those tell-tale green lights begin to appear. The 14 barges which provide the show run very quietly. They are nearly invisible, with only their running lights to reveal their approach. Then once they are in position the show begins with a fanfare of techno music and all those wonderful lights reflecting off Bay Lake.

The first four barges all light up their 40 foot long and 25 foot high displays at once and portray the image of a sea serpent accompanied by "Boo Bop Bopbop Bop (I Love You Too)" from Pete's Dragon.

Sea_Serpent

Soon the next float comes alive with the image of a spouting whale as you listen to "Whale of a Tale" from 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea.

Whale_and_Turtle

Floats six and seven feature a turtle bobbing its head under water and an octopus, also accompanied by lively music generated by the 800 watt sound system.

Soon the first three floats in the second string light up to reveal three jumping dolphins, followed in turn by a Brachiosaurus, a crocodile, four seahorses and finally King Triton. By the time all 14 floats are illuminated there are over 50,000 lights involved in the animated panorama. WOW!

Dolphins

King_Triton

Then, just when you think it's all over, the grand finale begins. It's an inspirational salute to America, with Flags and Stars set to a patriotic musical medley of God Bless America, Yankee Doodle, and You're a Grand Old Flag.

Stars_and_Flags

You don't even have to spend money on park admission to enjoy the Electrical Water Pageant.

It sails past the beach at every Disney resort on Bay Lake and the Seven Seas Lagoon. The normal schedule is:
• 9:00 p.m. - Polynesian Resort
• 9:15 p.m. - Grand Floridian
• 9:35 p.m. - Wilderness Lodge
• 9:45 p.m. - Fort Wilderness
• 10:05 p.m. - Contemporary Resort
• 10:20 p.m. - Magic Kingdom (only when MK is open past 10:00 p.m.)

The Electrical Water Pageant is an often overlooked feature at Walt Disney World and it truly is a hidden gem. Plan to watch it from the beach at one of the resorts soon. With a little planning you might even see the Wishes fireworks spectacular reflecting off the water before or after the pageant. Check with Guest Services at your resort to confirm exact show times.

If you watch it from the Polynesian Resort I recommend a stop at Captain Cook's on the way. Pick up a cool Dole Whip to enjoy as you sit on the beach enjoying the show. If you watch from Fort Wilderness, take a look around, you may just see Carol and I on the patio beside the marina!

February 3, 2013

A Quiet and Casual Lunch at the Grand Floridian Café

Andrew Rossi

When it comes to fine dining the Grand Floridian Resort and Spa has some of the most exclusive restaurants in all of Disney World. First and foremost among these restaurants is Victoria and Albert's. An eleven time recipient of the prestigious AAA Five Diamond Award, this restaurant offers innovative cooking with a menu that changes daily, impeccable service, and opulent décor. Narcoossee's specializes in seafood and features a breathtaking location with stunning panoramic views of the Seven Seas Lagoon. Citricos features a Mediterranean-inspired décor and menu in addition to an award winning wine list that is one of the most extensive in all of Disney World. Each of these restaurants are what Disney classifies as Signature dining locations. Signature restaurants are the cream of the crop amongst the numerous dining locations to be found all across Disney World, offering elegant and refined settings that create truly unique and memorable dining experiences.

Overshadowed by its more prestigious neighbors, the Grand Floridian Café is easily missed even by those who are staying at the resort. Although it might not have the same name recognition, this restaurant provides a great alternative for those who may not be looking to dine in as formal a setting nor have the budget for these other Signature dining locations.

GFC Signage

Overview:
Disney's Grand Floridian Resort and Spa certainly lives up to its namesake. When it comes to Disney resorts, its grandeur is second to none. The Grand Floridian is all about elegance as soon as you enter the lobby and this is carried throughout the rest of the resort.

GF Lobby

While the Grand Floridian Café ties into the overall Victorian theming and charm of the resort, it does so in a more casual and subdued way, which helps to create a comfortable and calm setting in which to enjoy your meal.

The Grand Floridian Cafe is located in the main building of the Grand Floridian. Situated in an un-imposing location tucked away from the lobby, it can easily be passed by as one makes their way toward the resort's marina. Open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, easily accessible by boat or monorail from the Magic Kingdom, and located at one of Disney World's marquee resorts, it is surprising that the Grand Floridian Café is largely overlooked when it comes to Disney dining locations. This, however, is part of its allure. The restaurant's relative obscurity makes for a quiet and relaxing atmosphere, often without need of a reservation, which provides a much-needed escape from the crowds as well as the hustle and bustle of the theme parks.

Atmosphere:
The Grand Floridian Café has an atmosphere that I can best describe as casual elegance. It has the same Victorian style as the rest of the resort, but with a more comfortable and laid-back feel. The restaurant's dining room is bright and inviting, featuring a color palette of white and cream.

GFC Dining Room1

GFC Dining Room2

Its high ceilings give the restaurant a very open feel, which is also aided by its large windows.

GFC Windows

Not only do these windows allow in ample sunlight throughout the day, but they also offer stunning views of the resort's courtyard and rose garden.

GFC View

These windows really help to bring the outdoors into the restaurant, with the roses from the garden continuing onto each table top. This flower motif is also continued on the wallpaper and carpeting as well.

GFC Table Roses

Subtle touches like the restaurant's lace curtains and beautiful floral arrangements lend a sense of sophistication, but overall this is a very inviting setting to dine with the entire family including small children.

GFC Flowers

The overall décor is very subdued and simple. The dining room's curtains, floral wall paper, and light fixtures all add a sense of Victorian charm.

GFC Light Fixture

In addition, a variety of water-color paintings of fruits and vegetables as well as several weather vanes featuring farm animals give the restaurant a little character and whimsy.

GFC Paintings

GFC Weather Vane

The Grand Floridian Café compliments the look and feel of the resort as a whole but it also provides a nice change from the elegance and refinement of the rest of the resort and its other Signature restaurants. Overall, there is really nothing about the restaurant's atmosphere that is going to make you say "wow," but it provides a tranquil and relaxing setting in which to enjoy your meal. This is aided by the fact that the restaurant is not usually very crowded, especially during lunchtime hours. Dining here is truly a great escape; you really have no idea that you are just minutes away from the Magic Kingdom.

The Menu:
The Grand Floridian Café's menu presents classic American fare, but with a little flair. Breakfast is served from 7am until 11am and the menu features traditional items such as the American ($13.49) featuring two Eggs served with biscuits, bacon, sausage and breakfast potatoes. There is also a Mickey Waffle ($10.99) served with bacon or sausage and a Ham and Cheese Omelet ($11.49) served with breakfast potatoes. There are, however, some breakfast items that are given a little twist, such as the Lobster Eggs Benedict ($17.99), Citrus Pancakes ($12.49) with roasted pecans and sun-dried cranberries topped with orange butter, and Vanilla-Laced French Toast ($11.99) which is dipped in a vanilla-flavored batter and served with bacon or sausage.

Lunch, served from 11:45am until 2pm, features a menu dominated by a lighter fare of sandwiches and salads. These include two of the restaurant's signature lunch items. First is the Grand Floridian Burger ($19.49) that is topped with butter-poached lobster with a red onion marmalade, crispy prosciutto, and arugula and there is also The Grand Sandwich ($13.49) served open-faced with hot ham, turkey, bacon, and tomato with a rich Boursin cheese sauce and fried onion straws.

Additionally, there is the Rustic Chicken Sandwich ($12.99) topped with a sun-dried tomato pesto and Dijon mayonnaise, a traditional Reuben Sandwich ($10.99), a Tuna Nicoise Salad ($18.49) with mixed greens, fingerling potatoes, green beans, kalamata olives, and tomatoes , Caesar Salad with shrimp ($15.49) or grilled chicken breast ($14.49), and a Cobb Salad ($15.49) with diced turkey, bacon, avocado, blue cheese, eggs, chives, and tomatoes.

If you are looking for a heartier lunch there is the Orecchiette Pasta of the Day ($15.99) that can also come served with shrimp ($19.99) or grilled chicken ($17.99) as well as the New York Strip Steak ($26.99) served with mashed potatoes and seasonal vegetables.

Dinner is served from 5pm until 10pm. The menu's appetizers are the same for both lunch and dinner, including Pan-Seared Lump Crab Cakes ($11.49), Shrimp Cocktail ($12.99), Caesar Salad ($5.49), a Seasonal Salad ($5.99), French Onion Soup ($7.49), and a Seasonal Soup ($5.99).

For entrees, the dinner menu replaces all the sandwiches and salads on the lunch menu with exception of the Grand Floridian Burger. The menu instead features Pan-Roasted Chicken Breast ($18.99) with a mushroom risotto, roasted mushrooms, and chicken pan juice, Shrimp and Grits ($19.99) served on top of creamy mascarpone cheese grits, a New York Strip Steak ($29.99) accompanied by crushed fingerling mashed potatoes and a brandy-green peppercorn sauce, a Grilled Pork Chop ($21.99) with sweet potato-smoked gouda gratin and sautéed spinach topped with chimichurri, and Orecchiette Pasta of the Day ($18.99).

The dessert options are the same for both lunch and dinner and include Chocolate Fondue ($6.99) served with dark chocolate ganache and fresh fruit, Key Lime Tart ($3.29) with a chocolate crust, New York-Style Lemon Cheesecake ($3.49), Boston Cream Pie ($3.49), Fresh Berry Tart ($3.49) with a layer of almond cake topped with seasonal berries and an apricot glaze, and Seasonal Sorbet ($4.99).

For my lunch I inquired as to what the Seasonal Soup was for the day and was told that it was a Butternut Squash Soup. I immediately decided to order this because it is a type of soup that I greatly enjoy but is not found in too many restaurants. This was butternut squash soup with a twist, however, as it was served with diced apples and bacon and came topped with a whipped maple cream.

GFC Butternut Squash Soup

The soup was presented with a fairly generous dollop of this whipped cream in the center and was then mixed in. The soup itself was so rich and creamy, but I found it to be not quite as sweet as other butternut squash soups I have had in the past. Some added sweetness was provided by the diced apples as well as the maple whipped cream. I was really surprised at how well the flavor of the apples blended with the butternut squash and complimented the slight saltiness of the bacon (whose flavor was not nearly as overwhelming as I had thought it would be). These added components really helped to make this butternut squash soup unique.

I was very undecided about my entrée as both the Grand Floridian Burger and The Grand Sandwich sounded very intriguing. Instead, I chose to go with the Orcchiette Pasta of the Day. On this particular day the pasta was served with green beans, peas, carrots, mushrooms, and sun dried tomatoes topped with a creamy asiago cheese sauce.

GFC Pasta

The sauce was the real highlight of the dish as it had such a rich and creamy flavor to which the vegetables provided a light and refreshing contrast. Of all the vegetables, the flavor of the sun dried tomatoes really popped. The pasta was also seasoned generously with crushed black pepper that helped to provide an added kick. I was also very impressed with the portion size as well as the amount of vegetables that were mixed into the pasta. One of the great things about this particular dish is that it is always changing depending on what is fresh.

Service:
One of the aspects of the Grand Floridian Café that really impressed me the most was the impeccable service. The Cast Members at this restaurant were some of the friendliest and most personable that I have experienced at any Disney dining location. It started as soon as I approached the entrance of the restaurant and the hostess immediately struck up a conversation with me when I told her it was my first time dining there and we continued to chat as she showed me to my table.

My server was extremely helpful in explaining the various menu items, including descriptions of the soup of the day and the orcchiette pasta that both won me over to ordering these dishes. We discussed a variety of topics including the Grand Floridian resort, Disney World, and living in Florida. He always seemed to be nearby whenever I needed anything. This is one of the primary advantages to dining at a restaurant that is typically less crowded. My server only had a couple of tables to wait on and there was really no rush to get tables turned over in order to seat additional parties as is evident at some of the more popular restaurants. This allows for the servers at the Grand Floridian Café to provide very personal and attentive service and it is something that makes it very likely for me to dine here again in the future.

Dining on a Budget:
Of course, when compared with the other dining options at the Grand Floridian, the Grand Floridian Café is a far more reasonable dining option. This is especially true at lunch time where the menu's variety of sandwiches and salads are all good values by Disney standards. To put it into perspective, if you were at Magic Kingdom and went to Pecos Bill's to order the Deluxe 1/3 Pound Angus Cheeseburger it would cost you $10.59. For just a few dollars more you could escape from the crowds and enjoy a meal in a far more quiet and relaxing setting with higher quality menu items such as the Rustic Chicken Sandwich for $12.99. Not only are the prices reasonable, but the portion sizes are very generous.

The Grand Floridian Café is on the Disney Dining Plan and is worth one table service credit for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The restaurant also participates in Tables in Wonderland, offering members a 20% discount. In addition, Annual Passholders can receive a 10% discount on lunch Mondays through Fridays. Disney Vacation Club members get a 10% discount on breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

The Overall Experience:
This was my first time dining at the Grand Floridian Café, but after my experience there I know that it will not be the last. With its quiet, casual elegance that incorporates the resort's Victorian charm, a reasonably priced menu that features a variety of different options from sandwiches to salads to full entrees, and friendly and attentive servers, the Grand Floridian Café is certainly worth a visit and not only if you are staying at the resort.

With such easy accessibility by boat or monorail from the Magic Kingdom, the Grand Floridian Café would be a great option for a middle-of-the-day break from the park, giving you the chance to relax and reenergize and enjoy some peace and quiet. In addition, since dining reservations can sometime be hard to come by in the Magic Kingdom, the Grand Floridian Café is the type of restaurant that you do not need to make reservations for months in advance. Overall, I was very impressed by the Grand Floridian Café. It is a dining location worthy of being located at one of Disney World's marquee resorts.

See past reviews by Guest Blogger Andrew Rossi.

Check out Reader Reviews of Grand Floridian Cafe and post your own too!

April 21, 2012

Tips for celebrating National Princess Week at Walt Disney World

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Julie Andrews and Anne Hathaway star in "The Princess Diaries" and "The Princess Diaries: Royal Engagement."


The first National Princess Week begins tomorrow, April 22, and its founders want to invite children "to celebrate the sparkle and wonder of every princess -- real, aspiring or imagined."

Academy Award-winning actress, singer and best-selling children's book author Julie Andrews is the face of the campaign. She starred with Anne Hathaway in two "The Princess Diaries" movies, which are being re-released on their 10th anniversary, and has co-authored with her daughter the popular "The Very Fairy Princess" series.

This collaboration between Target and The Walt Disney Company aims to allow children to create their own princess activities in their home towns. But if you're lucky enough to be visiting Walt Disney World, the home of the Disney Princesses, there are many experiences to be found, both large and small.

Here are some suggestions, based on my own family's experiences and ideas adapted from Andrews' ideas at http://julieandrewscollection.com/30-ways-to-celebrate-national-princess-week/

1. Start your day by wearing a tiara and keep it on everywhere you go. Bring your own from home, or you can purchase one in just about every gift store on Disney World property.

2. Build your own castle. If you are staying at a Disney World resort or planning to visit one of the water parks, find the sandy area and get to work designing a palace for royalty. A fun way to build the foundation is with the castle mold sold in most gift shops for about $6, and it makes a great inexpensive souvenir afterward. (For tips on visiting the Disney water parks, see my newsletter article at http://allears.net/ae/issue651.htm)

3. Take a carriage ride and learn how to step into a carriage with grace and practice your royal wave. Andrews offers these suggestions:
** To enter a carriage, turn your body slightly sideways, and step in with the foot closet to the carriage. Bend forward slightly and lower yourself onto the seat. Draw your outside leg in after you. You can also keep both legs together and sit first, then draw them up and in after you. Do the reverse when exiting.
** To perform a royal wave, hold your arm out straight, bend it at the elbow, then with a relaxed, open palm, rotate your wrist side-to-side lightly, as you would if you were screwing in a light bulb.
Carriages leave from Port Orleans Riverside and Fort Wilderness resorts and cost $45 per group. (For details, see http://land.allears.net/blogs/guestblog/2012/04/disney_worlds_fort_wilderness.html)

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Girls can choose from three Princess hairstyles at the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique.

4. Make a reservation for the Bibbidi Bobbidi Boutique at Downtown Disney or inside the Magic Kingdom. At these salons, Fairy Godmothers-in-training will transform each girl into the princess she's always dreamed of being. Choose your royal treatments -- from hair, makeup, nails and an outfit. Prices start at $54.95. My daughter was transformed into Ariel when she was 4 and Belle when she was 7, and she was so excited about the experiences. (You can read more, plus see photos and video, at http://land.allears.net/blogs/guestblog/2012/03/magical_makeovers_at_disney_wo.html)

5. Visit the Grand Floridian Resort & Spa for the My Disney Girl's Perfectly Princess Tea. "Rose Petal," a magical rose, hosts this event with Princess Aurora (Sleeping Beauty) for children ages 3 to 11 daily (except Tuesdays and Saturdays) from 10:30 to noon. The party includes a sing-along, stories and traditional foods served with tea or apple juice. Girls receive "My Disney Girl" 18-inch doll dressed in a Princess Aurora gown with accessories, a tiara, Princess link bracelet, princess scrapbook page, a rose, and a "Best Friend" certificate. (Boys receive a Duffy the Disney Bear instead of the doll.) The price is $250 plus tax (includes gratuity) for one adult and one child. (Read guest reviews of this experience on AllEars.net at http://allears.net/din/girlstea.htm)

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Topiaries featuring royal couples are showcased at the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival.

6. At the Epcot International Flower & Garden Festival (through May 20), look for the princess-shaped topiaries in World Showcase. Classic Disney couples can be found between the United Kingdom and France pavilions, and characters from "Beauty and the Beast" are located in the fresh-cut flower gardens of France. In Germany, you'll find Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs in topiary. (AllEars has explored every nook and cranny of the festival and you can find details at http://allears.net/tp/ep/fg12/epcot-flower-and-garden-festival-2012.htm)

7. See your favorite princesses in live performances at Disney's Hollywood Studios. Belle appears in her own 30-minute Broadway-style show daily at the Theater of the Stars, and Ariel tells her story during a 17-minute show at The Voyage of the Little Mermaid. On select nights, several of the Disney Princesses take part in Fantasmic!, a 25-minute show using water sprays as a backdrop for animation combined with live-action characters. (Get the lay of the land with this DHS page: http://allears.net/tp/mgm/mgm.htm)

8. Take a ride on Snow White's Scary Adventures at the Magic Kingdom before it closes on May 31. It is one of the original rides from when the theme park opened 1971, though it was reworked in 1994 to make it less frightening. When the Fantasyland expansion construction is finished next year, there will be a new Dwarfs' cottage and Seven Dwarfs Mine Train roller coaster. (You can stay up-to-date on the new Fantasyland rides and attractions at http://allears.net/tp/mk/fant_expansion.htm)

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Guests can meet Cinderella before their meal in her castle at Magic Kingdom.

9. Meet your favorite Disney Princesses in person for photos and autographs. Epcot and Magic Kingdom are the places to go for these encounters. Most of the princesses can be found inside the Town Square Theater at Magic Kingdom's entrance, though a few, such as Tiana, Ariel and Jasmine, are out in the park. Rapunzel moved last week from the Fairytale Courtyard to the Town Square Courtyard to make room for Brave's Merida in mid-May. At Epcot, the Disney Princesses can be seen outside various World Showcase pavilions, including Mulan in China. Check the daily guide for specific locations and times. (Plus, here are tips for finding your favorite princess: http://allears.net/tp/fur.htm)

10. Dine with the Disney Princesses. Cinderella hosts a breakfast, lunch and dinner in her castle at the Magic Kingdom with her Fairy Godmother and other princesses. My son and daughter really enjoyed this experience, both for the characters and the location. Reservations go quickly, so be prepared to book these meals exactly 180 days out. At Epcot, share a meal with royalty at Akershus Castle Royal Banquet Hall in the Norway Pavilion. At the Grand Floridian, guests can join Cinderella, Prince Charming, Lady Tremain (her stepmother), Drucilla and Anastasia (her stepsisters) at Cinderella's Happily Ever After Dinner. This buffet is one of the tastiest character meals, and the banter between the stepsisters and their mother is hilarious. Plus, little girls have a rare opportunity to dance with Prince Charming. (Find out how to plan your character meal at http://allears.net/din/cb.htm)

Finally, at the end of your day, let your little princess snuggle in bed with some princess pajamas and a princess storybook before she dreams of all the fun she had celebrating the Disney princesses. Andrews suggests foregoing any peas under the mattress.


November 26, 2009

Gingerbread House at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa

Gingerbread House at Disney's Grand Floridian Resort & Spa Established 1999 -- 11th Anniversary Open Daily 10 a.m. to 10 p.m.


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Lollipops
Oreo Cookie Chocolate Pops (1.6 oz.) -- $4.00
Mickey Face (3 oz.) -- $5.75
Princess (1.6 oz.) -- $5.75

Chocolate Snowman with Chocolates (4.2 oz.) -- $7.25
Chocolate Holiday Snow Globe (3.25 oz.) -- $7.50
Chocolate Holiday Hexagon Box with Truffles (7 oz.) -- $10.00
Chocolate Grand Floridian Frame (5.8 oz.) -- $12.00

Signature Items handmade

Large Chocolate Chip Cookie (4 oz.) -- $2.50
Gingerbread Cookie People (1.6 oz.) -- $4.00
Gingerbread* Shingle (2.8 oz.) -- $7.00
Peppermint Bark 1/2 lb. Bag -- $12.00
Stollen Bread with Marzipan (2 lbs.) -- $18.25

09GF_GingerbreadFront.JPG


Signature Gingerbread* House (3 1/2 lb.) -- $65.00

Gingerbread Ornaments*
Small (1 oz.) -- $8.50
House (3.8 oz.) -- $16.50
Butterfly (5.4 oz.) -- $16.50
Tree (3 oz.) -- $16.50
Cup (4 oz.) -- $16.50

Assorted Gingerbread Cookies 1/2 lb. Bag -- $15.75
Happy Holidays Chocolate Box with Truffles (8.6 oz.) -- $19.00

Chocolate Disney Characters
Cinderella (9.4 oz.) -- $19.50
Donald (9.4 oz.) -- $19.50
Goofy (10.4 oz.) -- $19.50
Mickey (14.2 oz.) -- $19.50
Minnie (12.5 oz.) -- $19.50
Tinker Bell (9.4 oz.) -- $19.50

Grand Floridian Seasons Greetings Box with Truffles (14.6 oz) -- $23.00
Poinsettia Chocolate Box with Truffles (20 oz) -- $29.00
Signature Chocolate Box with Truffles (2 lb 5 oz.) -- $75.00
* made from a classic "gingerbread" lebkuchen recipe

09GF_GingerbreadBack.JPG


Making of the Gingerbread House

1,050 lbs. of Honey
800 lbs. of Flour
600 lbs. of Chocolate
600 lbs. of Powdered Sugar
180 lbs. of Apricot Glaze
140 pints of Egg Whites
35 lbs. of Spices
Tons of Creativity,
Disney Magic and
Pixie Dust

It takes the Grand Floridian cast more than two months and 840 hours of labor to produce, cut and bake the 5,089 "shingles" used to decorate the Gingerbread House.

Gingerbread House & Ornaments

HONEY DOUGH
4 lbs honey
3 lbs bread flour

Method
Bring honey to a boil and mix into bread flour. Mix until dough has a smooth texture. Allow to cool. Wrap in plastic and allow to rest for up to two months.

SPICE DOUGH
2lbs all purpose flour
4 eggs
2 cups light corn syrup
1.5 oz ammonia*
1 cup pwater
1 oz ground cinnamon
1 oz ground nutmeg
1 oz ground cloves
1 oz ground ginger

Method
Mix all purpose flour, eggs, light corn syrup, and spices together. Dissolve ammonia* in water and add to mixture. Combine the honey dough and spice dough.
(* powdered ammonia or ammonium carbonate is found in drugstores and must be ground to powder before using)

Preparation
Roll the dough into 1/8" thick sheets and cut desired pieces.
Brush with milk and bake at 340F for 12 minutes.

Yield: 1 gingerbread house (13" x 15" x 10") or 10-15 ornaments

ROYAL ICING
4 cups powdered sugar
1 tbsp cream of tartar
4 each egg whites
1 tbsp lemon juice

Method
Make icing just before the assembly of the gingerbread house.
Beat egg whites until light and frothy. Add the powdered sugar and beat until incorporated. Add the cream of tartar and lemon juice while continuing to beat until smooth and icing is stiff. Cover the surface with plastic wrap to avoid it drying out. Assemble your gingerbread house according to your pattern using the royal icing as glue. For soft icing add 2 more egg whites and add food coloring.

Yield: one Gingerbread House

09GF_GingerbreadBrochurea.jpg

Thanks to Guest Blogger Cedric Ching!!!

November 18, 2008

Grand Floridian's Ginger Bread House

Guest Blogger Amy Bedore visited the Grand Floridian on opening day of the Ginger Bread House!

It smelled like the holiday's when you first walk in the Grand Floridian and the Ginger Bread house was amazing. While the Gingerbread house was done the rest of the resort was still being decorated.

The House was beautiful. It's the 10th anniversary and a giant gingerbread sign was decorated and attatched to the home to notate that.

Here are some photos. Below the photos is the menu of goodies for sale!

Grand Floridian Ginger Bread House

Grand Floridian Ginger Bread House

Grand Floridian Ginger Bread House

Grand Floridian Ginger Bread House

Grand Floridian Ginger Bread House


Ginger Bread House Goodies for Sale:

Large Chocolate Chip Cookie (4 oz) $2.50
Gingerbread Cookie People (1.6 oz) $4.00

Lollipops
Oreo Cookie White Chocolate Pop (1.6 oz) $4.00 *new this year*
Mickey Face (3 oz) $5.75
Princess (1.6 oz) $5.75
Chocolate Mickey or Minnie Head (3.25 oz) $6.75
Gingerbread House Shingle (2.8 oz) $7.00
Chocolate Snowman with Chocolates (4.2 oz) $7.25
Chocolate Mickey in Gold Box (3.2 oz ) $7.50

Gingerbread Ornaments
Small (1 oz) $ 8.50
House (3.8 oz) $16.50
Butterfly (5.4 oz) $16.50
Tree (3oz) $16.50
Cup (4oz) $16.50

Chocolate Gingerbread House (5.6oz) $10.00 *new this year*
Chocolate Holiday Hexagon Box with Truffles (7 oz) $10.00 *new this year*

Peppermint Bark 1/2 lb bag $12.00
Chocolate Holiday Frame (5.8 oz) $12.00
Assorted Gingerbread Cookies 1/2 lb bag $15.75
Seasons Greetings Chocolate box with Truffles (14.6 oz) $16.50
Stollen Bread with Marzipan (2lb) $18.25

Chocolate Disney Characters
Belle (14.4 oz) $19.50
Donald (9.4 oz) $19.50
Goofy (10.4 oz) $19.50
Mickey (14.2 oz) $19.50
Minnie ( 12.5 oz) $19.50 *new this year*
Tinker Bell (9.4 oz) $19.50

Poinsettia Chocolate Box with Truffles (20 oz) $19.50

Chocolate Champagne Bottle with Chocolates (1lb 2.6 oz) $35.00 *new this year*

Signature Gingerbread House (3.5 lbs) $65.00

Signature Chocolate Box with Truffles (2lbs 5 oz) $75.00

July 26, 2007

Grand Floridian Room Renovation

All Ears® reader Rebecca Brophy sends photos of a newly renovated room at the Grand Floridian. The room is in Conch Key with a Theme Park View.

The desk (with roll out table underneath), the TV armoire (with 4 drawers underneath on the left and refrigerator behind door on right) and daybed (that folds down similar to ones at rehabbed room at the Polynesian, we stayed there last year, were lined up against the wall past the closet on the left side. I think the addition of the comfortable chair with ottoman was a good idea. Also on the nightstand was an iPod dock (another great idea).


Grand Floridian 2007 Renovated Room

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Grand Floridian 2007 Renovated Room

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Grand Floridian 2007 Renovated Room

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Grand Floridian 2007 Renovated Room

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Also, AllEars® Team Member LindaMac was at the Grand Floridian today and found a sign posted in the lobby about the room construction:


Signage at Grand Floridian regarding Room Renovation

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About Grand Floridian

This page contains an archive of all entries posted to All Ears® Guest Blog in the Grand Floridian category. They are listed from oldest to newest.

Ft. Wilderness is the previous category.

Saratoga Springs is the next category.

Many more can be found on the main index page or by looking through the archives.