Review: Seven Seas Food Festival is worth a trip to SeaWorld Orlando
Looking for a fun way to feed the family today? SeaWorld’s Seven Seas Food Festival is back for another Saturday with more than 55 dishes from global coastal markets plus craft beer and wine pairings. The markets around the park opening at 11 a.m. and the food on Bayside Pathway begins serving at noon.
Compared to many other food festivals and food trucks, Seven Seas is affordable – especially if you purchase a punch-card-style lanyard. Each punch entitles you to a food or beverage, and the lanyards can be shared among friends and family. Also, the lanyards do not expire until the end of the festival on May 13. A 10-punch lanyard is $40 and a 15-punch lanyard is $55. Considering that most dishes cost between $4 and $6 – with some more – this is definitely the way to go.
Regular readers of my blog may remember that I attended the SeaWorld pass member preview of the festival and shared my thoughts on quite a few of the dishes that everyone now can enjoy during the festival. Last Saturday, I was invited to sample even more of the festival’s offerings with my family. So, if you’re ready to eat, I’m ready to dish!
We began the media event with the two markets that are tucked away off Bayside Pathway near Ports of Call. The Asian market serves Vietnamese Shrimp Spring Rolls, Peking Duck Lo Mein, Mushi-Gyoza (steamed pork dumpling), and Toffee Banana. We enjoyed the Peking Duck Lo Mein and MushiGyoza, but the Toffee Banana dessert was the real star of the market. It’s served on a stick with a crunchy sesame seed candy glaze and a mound of vanilla ice cream. Delicious!
At the Korean market, we tried the Korean Beef Tacos, Roasted Sweet Potato Taco, Korean BBQ Rib and Bingsu Salted Vanilla Ice Cream. Both types of tacos are served with Kimchi, Coleslaw and Sweet Pepper Sauce. The BBQ Rib comes with Cauliflower Fried Rice and Apple Plum Sauce. My family and I have a collective sweet tooth, though, and we all raved about the Bingsu Salted Vanilla Ice cream. It’s topped with Caramel Popcorn and tastes as delicious as it looks.
Next, we ventured back out into the park, and my husband made a stop at the Brew Hut to try the Barley Mow Quackalope. He said that India Pale Ale fans will enjoy the bold, robust flavor of the IPA beer. Then, we walked past the Bayside Stadium, where soundcheck was taking place for the afternoon’s free concert. We stopped in the Wild Arctic gift shop to have our passes scanned to record our visit. After three visits to the food festival, pass members are each given a complimentary mason jar glass.
And, then, it was time to eat again! We had arrived at the Gulf Coast Market and the Polynesian Island Market. Gulf Coast serves a Cheese Grits & Shrimp Casserole and Briased Shirt Ribs, which we tried at the pass member preview, so we opted to sample the Chicken & Sausage Gumbo and the Wild Berry Chocolate Bread Pudding. My husband and I really liked the flavorful gumbo and will go back for seconds at a future date. As for the bread pudding, it wasn’t our favorite, especially after tasting the previous two desserts that were outstanding.
At the adjacent Polynesian Island Market, my children were drawn to the Hawaiian Pulled Pork Slider and they enjoyed the sandwich. My husband liked the Loco Moco, which is grilled spam with white rice, scrambled egg and brown gravy. He grew up eating spam, and found the recipe to be pleasing. It wasn’t a childhood staple for me, and I just couldn’t get past the texture of the meat, no matter how well it was prepared. We all shared the Hawaiian Pineapple Dream Cake, which was moist and sweet. The portion, as with many of the SeaWorld dishes, was quite generous.
The one food my children said they could not wait to get their hands on again after trying it at the pass member preview was the Grilled Cheese Pound Cake topped with a raspberry sauce. I have to agree that it is one of the standout dishes of the festival. It can be found at the Pacific Coast Market.
By this point, we all were feeling pretty full, despite sharing the various foods, and we realized that we will have to return another day to the sample foods from the other five markets. We did make room for the Grilled Corn on the Cob with Cheese at the Mexican Market on our way out. It’s not to be missed.
The new Seven Seas Food Festival is a great addition to springtime activities at SeaWorld Orlando. The quality and variety of the food and beverages make this festival in itself worth a trip to the theme park.
DISCLAIMER: I was a guest of SeaWorld Orlando for the pass member preview of the Seven Seas Food Festival. This did not affect my story, and my opinions are my own.