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A Dream Is A Wish Your Heart Makes

Just some inspiration and motivation for today; 

A dream is a wish your heart makes,
When you’re fast asleep,
In dreams you lose your heartaches,
Whatever you wish for, you keep.

Have faith in your dreams and someday,
Your rainbow will come smiling through,
No matter how your heart is grieving,
If you keep on believing,
The dream that you wish will come true.

A dream is a wish your heart makes,
When you’re feeling small,
Alone, In the night you whisper,
Thinking no one can hear you at all.

You wake with the morning sunlight,
To find fortune that is smiling on you,
Don’t let your heart be filled with sorrow,
For all you know tomorrow,
The dream that you wish will come true.

No matter how your heart is grieving
If you keep on believing
The dream that you wish will come true

Future Trip Plans

I’m a planner. I like to plan things well in advance before they actually happen. I’m talking about realistic things that I know I have a good chance of actually doing. One thing I especially like to plan in advance, are my Disney trips, and with my new running and marathon goals, I’ve been coming up with trip plans for 2014 and 2015 to travel when the marathons happen.

The first of three trips will be in February 2014, and if the dates stay the same year to year the Princess Half Marathon should be on Sunday the 23rd, (with a 5K on the 22nd, and a fitness expo on the 21st.)

The second trip will be in November of 2014, and will be for the Wine and Dine Half Marathon. If weekends stay the same, though this seems to change a bit more, especially with the addition of the Tower of Terror 10-miler pushing it later this year, but right now I’m looking at the Wine and Dine Half Marathon being on Saturday November 8th 2014. This trip would actually be the easiest to plan, so it doesn’t really matter when the marathon is actually held. I always go to Disney in the fall, so whether it be earlier and in October, or sticks with the November schedule, it won’t matter.

The last of the three trips will be for the Walt Disney World Full Marathon weekend, which runs from Thursday January 8th until Sunday the 11th, with the Full Marathon being on Sunday, a 5K on Friday, a half marathon on Saturday, and a bunch of other stuff going on simultaneously.

Not only will that plan allow me to be in Disney for all the races I want to run, but it also gets me there for the holiday specials, though that will require some luck with the dates for the Osborne lights and Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Parties. I can’t be simple and just go to Disney to run, I need to keep up with everything else too. But if dates for all of that stay the same as well, I should be able to cram some of that in as all those events start when I should be there for the Wine and Dine Half Marathon, and finish what I started seeing when I return for the Full Marathon in January.

I also wanted to go to Disney for my 30th birthday. With the Princess Half Marathon, I’ll be going a week late, but that’s okay with me. I’ll avoid President’s Day crowds, and will have something to look forward to, so on my 30th birthday, I’ll be able to focus on “I’m going to Disney in a week,” rather then, “crap, I’m 30.”

Running

Okay. I know this isn’t food-related, but whatever, it’s my blog, and it is at least Disney related.

I used to hate running. Really hate it. I used to cut gym class in high school to get out of running the mile, (which by the way, if you have gym class with your two best friends, and you’re all “absent” on the same day, you will get caught, not the smartest idea.) But in the last couple years I’ve started exercising a lot more, and running has become one of my favorite things. I find it’s a good way to clear my head and relax, at least mentally, physically it’s the opposite of relaxing, but it does give me a lot of energy, and makes me feel good.

Today I signed up for my first 5K. (Which in American speak is 3.1 miles, but I guess 5K just sounds better?) The distance doesn’t bother me at all. When I have the time I’ll run five miles easily, and then I’ll usually only stop because that’s the end of a pretty convenient running route I’ve developed around my apartment, tough right now, with the temp reaching close to 100 degrees each day, I’ve spent more time running indoors then out. So now I’m not only running for fun, but now I’m paying for the privilege.

I’ll be running in the first family (though I’ll be solo,) Happy Haunt 5K this September at Disney World’s ESPN Wide World of Sports complex. There’s a whole weekend of events, with a running expo on Friday, the 5K Saturday morning, a ten-miler night run Saturday evening, and an after party that goes into the wee hours of Sunday morning. I’ll be attending the expo on Friday, (required for all runners for information pick up and stuff,) and the after party.

And not only am I running in this 5K, but unless I have a horrible time, I’m already looking ahead to future runs, including the princess half-marathon which is held every year in February, the Wine and Dine marathon, which is always held during Epcot’s Food and Wine Festival, and the Walt Disney World marathon in January, which is a 26.2 mile run through all four theme parks. Yeah, that will take a little bit more training then a 5K.

Terra Vegan Marketplace at 2012 Epcot Food and Wine Festival

I’ve been enjoying Epcot’s Food and Wine Festival almost every year since I turned 21. It’s always been a great time, and one of my favorite times to visit the World. (The others being right before Christmas, for Epcot’s Flower and Garden Festival, and also my birthday.) Walking around World Showcase eating and drinking from the booths, is such a fun way to spend an afternoon.

Since I’m dining completely vegetarian now, my dining choices at the booths are more limited. In 2011 there were about 70 different food items to sample between a couple dozen booths. Only 23 items were vegetarian, and of those 23, only six were savory items. Slim pickings for vegetarians unless you want to spend the whole day eating sweets, which wouldn’t actually be the worst thing, but sometimes you just want something more substantial.

I’m really looking forward to the fact that this year Disney is making a brand new “Terra” marketplace booth that will be entirely vegan. The menu is already partially leaked, and will feature a Indian-flavored Gardein “chicken” dish and a Gardein “beef” chili with cashew “cheese.” I have to say, though they get an A for effort, I think the food offerings fall short, and while I’m beyond thrilled that there will be a vegan booth at this year’s festival, I am somewhat disapointed that the offerings will be relying on processed “meat.”

Really Disney? All the time you spend planning the Festival, and this is the best you could come up with? I’ll probably still try both items, at least the chili, since I’ve been experimenting a lot with nut cheeses recently, (to clarify, I am not a vegan, but my kitchen is completely vegan, I only eat eggs and dairy while dining out,) and cashews seem to be the best substitute for cheesy flavor that I’ve found so far.

I just think that with so many naturally great whole vegan foods out there, Disney could’ve done much better then Gardein meat substitutes. What about using some tofu or tempeh? I will admit, before going vegetarian, I probably would’ve stayed away from any tofu offerings. I really thought I didn’t like the stuff, since when I was younger my mom went through a health nut phase, and anything she cooked for dinner is what we ate, or we didn’t eat. She made tofu dishes a few times, and I always found them extremely bland and boring. After going vegetarian I tried tofu again, and now it’s one of my favorite foods. Seasoning makes all the difference. I would have however, probably tried tempeh without being vegetarian. I had never heard of the stuff before I went vegetarian, and anytime I see something on a menu I’ve never tried, let alone heard of, I usually decide I need to try it.

But I am still happy that there will be a vegan marketplace in general. I think it makes vegan a little more mainstream, and maybe will educate the general public a little bit better on veganism.

Vegetarian Counter Service Options – Part Three

Vegetarian Counter Service Options – Part Three

There are over twenty resorts at WDW. Resorts are broken down into three main categories, value, moderate, and deluxe. All of them have at least one counter service restaurant. Some are better then other for vegetarians.

The value resorts have large food courts that are the only available dining options at those resorts, aside from pizza delivery. I’ve stayed at each value resort at least once, except for Art of Animation, which just opened in May, but I have a room booked there this fall. The other value resorts are; All Star Sports, All Star Music, All Star Movies, and Pop Century.

The All Star resorts are pretty interchangeable, and aside from the décor they’re pretty much identical. The three food courts, End Zone at Sports, Intermission at Music, and World Premiere at Movies share the same menus with only small changes at each, and the vegetarian options are the same at all three; create-your-own salad, cheese quesadilla, veggie burger, and cheese pizza. All Disney counter service pizza is notorious for being bad, but the All Star resorts gets the prize for being the worst of the worst. The cheese quesadilla is fine, if you like plain and boring, as it is just cheese, no veggies or anything. I don’t know about you, but when I make quesadillas at home, I cram in as many veggies as possible, to the point of explosion. The veggie burgers and salad I haven’t actually tried, but salad’s salad, and the veggie burgers here are the same as elsewhere on property, and I avoid those whenever possible. My advice for eating at the All Star resorts? Don’t do it and stay somewhere else.

Pop Century has a much better food court, even before I went vegetarian I preferred Pop Century to the All Stars for many reasons, the food court, Everything Pop, only being one of them. Of course the regular cheese pizza and veggie burgers are served, but they also have vegetable lo mien, more varied salad selections, vegetarian lasagna, a vegetarian calzone, make-your-own burritos at lunch, and a selection of flatbreads. I’ve always found the food to be good for what it is. You won’t have any amazing meals here, but you’ll go far from being hungry. My favorite of everything I’ve tried here has been the burritos, which I’ve been able to load up with beans, rice, olives, guacamole, sour cream, cheese, and salsa. I’ve also had the vegetarian calzone, which is huge and easily enough for more then one person. The lo mien is good, but I don’t think there are nearly enough vegetables in it.

Vegetable Lo Mien at Everything Pop – September 2011

Art of Animation, the newest value resort’s food court, Landscape of Flavors, I’m really looking forward to. I actually think Everything Pop has more options overall, but they’ve made such an interesting menu at Landscape of Flavors, and the food has been getting good reviews. On the menu for lunch and dinner here; caprese sandwich, create-your-own salad, tandoori acorn squash with Indian side dishes, cheese pizza, vegetable pizza, create-your-own pasta, and a house-made veggie burger, (so not the same ones as other places.) With a two week trip coming up, I plan on trying most of the options here, but I’m most excited about the Indian food.

The moderate resorts are; Port Orleans, Caribbean Beach, and Coronado Springs. Caribbean Beach only has one quick service location, Old Port Royale, (think Pirates of the Caribbean,) and aside from plain pasta, pizza, and that good old veggie burger, the only unique option is a vegetable platter, which is all of their side dishes from the hot entrees at dinner. Actually it’s a selection of five of the six side dishes, which doesn’t make sense to me to just cut out one from the offerings. I mean if the platter was three or four I’d get it, but instead of choosing five, it’s just choosing the one you don’t want.

Coronado Springs has two counter service locations; Café Rix and Pepper Market. Café Rix has some different menu options, but they’re all very plain, including peanut butter and jelly, and cottage cheese with fruits or vegetables. Nothing I’d really consider a meal. Plus I don’t think I’ll ever want a peanut butter and jelly sandwich badly enough to spend $5 on one. (I should mention that just about every counter service on property sells Smucker’s Uncrustables, so if you’re ever really hungry, and need a quick pick me up, those are always available. And are actually a slightly better deal as a kids meal, since for $5 you get the sandwich, plus two sides, which can be fresh fruit, and a small bottle of water. Pepper Market offers many more choices then Café Rix, including nachos, quesadillas, burritos, salads, that darn veggie burger, pizza, (though they do have margherita pizza here in addition to the usual plain cheese,) and some pasta selections.

Port Orleans food courts Riverside Mill, in Riverside, and Sassagoula Floatworks in the French Quarter, offer very few vegetarian options; salad, pizza, quesadilla, and plain pasta are the only options at either restaurant.

I haven’t personally tried any of the moderate resort’s food courts, and honestly unless I end up staying at one, or there’s a big menu change to entice me, I probably won’t. If I had to eat at one, I’d probably pick Coronado Springs, for Pepper Market, but even that’s only open as counter service for breakfast and dinner. Lunch has changed to buffet, and it doesn’t appear to be changing back anytime soon.

The deluxe resort counter service locations are smaller then those at the value resorts, but where the lack in quantity, (which is understandable, since the value resorts have many more guests on any given day then the deluxe resorts,) the food makes up for in quality.

One of the nice things about most deluxe resorts is there close proximity to each other, so it’s very easy to have a lot of accessible dining options if staying at one. The one exception to that rule is Animal Kingdom Lodge, since the only way to get anyplace else from there is by bus, and the only things relatively close by are Animal Kingdom park, and Blizzard Beach. However Animal Kingdom Lodge is probably the best resort for vegetarians as far as dining options go. The two table service restaurants here, Jiko and Sanaa, both have separate vegan and vegetarian menus, and Boma is an excellent buffet with plenty of vegetarian options. But this is about counter service, and Animal Kingdom Lodge’s Mara is awesome. There are only a couple of actual vegetarian options on the menu, but since a lot of the stuff is made to order, it’s easy to get the meat left off certain dishes, such as the chicken flatbread with corn and cilantro sauce, without the chicken. Other options are an actual vegetable flatbread, falafel pita, and salad. So not a ton of choices, more it’s all very good quality food, and none of it’s boring.

The Yacht and Beach Club resorts, the Boardwalk, and the Swan and Dolphin resorts, are all located just outside of Epcot, (not from the main entrance, but from the “backdoor” between France and the United Kingdom in World Showcase.) They are all within walking distance of each other, Epcot, and Disney Hollywood Studios.

Yacht and Beach Club share Beach Club Marketplace as the only counter service location between the two, and the only options there are cheese pizza, or a grilled vegetable wrap, though if you stay there, the pool bar has a similar, if not the same vegetable wrap. Boardwalk Bakery at the Boardwalk has a tomato and mozzarella sandwich, which is not worth a trip to just for that, but the cupcakes there are unbelievable. There’s also kiosks along the Boardwalk, selling pizza, ravioli, and mozzarella sticks. Picabu Buffeteria at the Dolphin serves nachos, pizza, and lasagna. The Swan and Dolphin are not owned by Disney, so if you’re looking for a way to use up counter service credits on the dining plan, don’t eat here.
The Magic Kingdom resorts are also easy to get to from one another. The monorail makes stops at the Contemporary, Polynesian, and Grand Floridian. There are boats available to the Wilderness Lodge and Grand Floridian, and I believe also the Polynesian. You can walk between the Polynesian and Grand Floridian, and you can walk to the Contemporary from the Magic Kingdom. Each Magic Kingdom resort has one quick service location, Contempo Café at the Contemporary Resort, Captain Cook’s at the Polynesian, Gasparilla Grill at the Grand Floridian, and Roaring Forks at Wilderness Lodge.

Contempo Café at the Contemporary Resort is wonderful. Before going vegetarian I had a wonderful flatbread there, that I’m pretty sure is made to order, and can be ordered without the beef. It would be really good with just the sun-dried tomatoes, goat cheese, and caramelized onions alone. I also had their vegetarian option a couple of years ago, the vegetable bake with feta cheese, which was also good, and a nice comfort food type meal. There are lots of salads and flatbreads that can probably be made vegetarian if you ask.

Roasted Vegetable Bake at Contempo Cafe – September 2010

Captain Cook’s also has great food, and every time I’ve eaten there, it’s been vegetarian, even before I was. The grown up’s grilled cheese is a blend of four or five different cheeses on artisan bread, and the Polynesian salad is very refreshing, with pineapple, blue cheese, and citrus vinaigrette. They also serve cheese pizza.

Polynesian Salad at Captain Cook’s – September 2010

I’ve never been to Gasparilla Grill or Roaring Forks, but both serve salads and cheese pizza. Gasparilla Grill also has vegetable lasagna and a tabbouleh wrap, and Roaring Forks offers a vegetable sandwich.

There are two other resorts on property, Saratoga Springs and Old Key West resort, which are classified as Disney Vacation Club resorts. Good’s to Go at Old Key West and Artist’s Palette at Saratoga Springs both have vegetarian options. Artist’s Palette has a vegetable flatbread, and many of the other flatbreads and their salads are probably able to be made vegetarian. Good’s to Go has a vegetable sandwich.

The last area of Disney that I need to discuss is Downtown Disney, which has a lot of dining options, but most are table service. There are really only five counter service restaurants, Cooke’s of Dublin, Earl of Sandwich, Pollo Campero, Fresh-A-Peel, and my personal favorite, Wolfgang Puck Express.

The only vegetarian option at Cooke’s of Dublin is a garden salad. Earl of Sandwich has slightly more options, including a vegetable sandwich and a caprese sandwich, as well as a selection of salads that are made to order, so all are probably able to be made vegetarian. You also have the option of making any salad a wrap. I’ve never tried any of the vegetarian options here, but I’ve always enjoyed eating here before I went vegetarian, and it’s a great value as well.

Fresh-A-Peel and Pollo Campero are new options in Disney, only opening last year. The menu only features chicken, but most of the side dishes are probably vegetarian if you just want a snack. Fresh-A-Peel has better options, with lots of different salads and wraps that can probably all be made vegetarian.

Also in the same building as Fresh-A-Peel and Pollo Campero, and it’s not well advertised is a Babycakes bakery. All of the stuff they sell is completely vegan and gluten-free. I’ve read very mixed reviews, but trying a bunch of the stuff myself, I have to say it’s pretty good. The only thing I haven’t really cared for are the brownie bites, which I thought were kind of dry, but I love the chocolate chip and pumpkin bread, cupcake tops, and mini doughnuts.

Babycakes Treats – September 2011

Wolfgang Puck Express is my favorite counter service location in Disney. You order at a counter, but then are served at a table, so there’s a very relaxed feeling while eating there. The menu features lots of salads, a roasted vegetable melt sandwich, pizza, (really good pizza, not typical Disney counter service pizza,) spaghetti, and macaroni and cheese. I’ve only tried a salad and pizza so far, but next trip my mind is on that melt, and I’ve heard nothing but wonderful things about the macaroni and cheese.

Four-Cheese Pesto Pizza at Wolfgang Puck Express – September 2010

So there you have it. An overview of all vegetarian dining counter service options in Disney World. I didn’t include any breakfast options, because as long as you stay away from things that include sausage and bacon, most of it’s already vegetarian, and listing every vegetarian snack available in Disney would be next to impossible. But this should give vegetarians a good idea of what’s available, or at least let them know they won’t go hungry!

Vegetarian Counter Service Options – Part Two

The vegetarian options at counter service restaurants in Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, and Disney Hollywood Studios aren’t nearly as good as those in Epcot.

Animal Kingdom probably has the poorest selection, with the most interesting vegetarian option probably being the vegetable submarine sandwich at Restaurantosaurus in Dinoland. The only real other options at Animal Kingdom are cheese pizza at Pizzafari and a fruit plate at Flame Tree Barbecue, both in Discovery Island. Though I love fruit, it’s not enough for me to just eat it alone and call it lunch, and pizza is just boring. There is also Yak and Yeti, (which has both a table service and a counter service restaurant in Asia,) but the only vegetarian food there is a side of fries.

Magic Kingdom isn’t much better, but Columbia Harbor House in Liberty Square is at least a good meal. I’ve eaten there many times and have never been disappointed. My favorite meal there is the lighthouse sandwich, which is hummus, tomatoes, and broccoli slaw mixed with honey mustard dressing on whole wheat bread. Columbia Harbor House also serves vegetarian chili, which I believe is also vegan, and salads that can be made vegetarian when ordered without the meat.

Lighthouse Sandwich at Columbia Harbor House – September 2010

Other options at Magic Kingdom include a veggie burger or a taco salad at Pecos Bill’s in Frontierland, which on their own are pretty boring, but there is a toppings bar with lots of ways to make that burger tastier, and to load up that salad for a filling meal. Cosmic Ray’s in Tomorrowland has a similar toppings bar, and also serves veggie burgers, as well as a Greek salad, and a vegetable sandwich. Though I’ve tried Cosmic Ray’s a few times, and have to say, I’ve never been impressed, between the two, I would always pick Pecos Bill’s. There’s also Pinocchio’s Village Haus in Fantasyland, where they now serve artisan flatbreads, but I haven’t been back there since they revamped their menu, I’m still mad they got rid of their Figaro fries. There’s also a ton of snack options in Magic Kingdom that are worth mentioning. Citrus swirls and Dole whips in Adventureland, which are orange and pineapple ice cream treats, funnel cake at Sleepy Hollow, ice cream at the Plaza, and they serve both Rice Dream and Tofutti ice cream if you’re looking for a vegan treat, and Main Street Bakery, which is full of many tempting sweets.

Vegetable Wrap at Cosmic Ray’s – September 2010 (No Longer Served)

Hollywood Studios has a reputation of having really bad restaurants. And before a year or so ago, I would of had to agree. However, ever since going vegetarian, I’ve found I enjoy the options there more. It’s not Epcot, but I find the options there to be more satisfying then those at Animal Kingdom, or even Magic Kingdom. I’ve had edible pizza at Toy Story’s Pizza Planet, (edible is a pretty good rating for counter service pizza in Disney,) a tasty hot vegetable sandwich at Backlot Express, (which I’m pretty sure is the same sandwich that’s served at Studio Catering Company,) though I suggest getting it without the tomatoes, and a good Asian salad with pickled ginger and edamame at ABC Commissary. Also, if it’s open while you’re there, Starring Rolls Bakery is worth a visit. No real vegetarian options there, unless they have vegetable sushi that day, but the desserts here are very good, and are really the only desserts in the Studios that are worth the calories.

Grilled Vegetable Sandwich at Backlot Express – September 2010

Part three with counter service options at Downtown Disney and the resort restaurants to follow.

Vegetarian Counter Service Options – Part One

Since I’ll be using the Disney dining plan during my next trip, and one counter service meal is included for each night I’m there, (so I’ll have a total of twelve counter service credits,) I decided to start looking over counter service menus today for vegetarian options.

Each counter service restaurant has at least one vegetarian option on their menu, but a lot of the time, the option is cheese pizza or a veggie burger, which I’m going to try and not resort to eating. With few exceptions, Disney’s pizza is notoriously bad, and I just don’t like the veggie burgers Disney serves in their restaurants. There are some restaurants that serve house-made veggie burgers, but the majority of vggie burgers in Disney are commercial frozen ones. So counter service meals will require a little more planning on my part if I want to enjoy my meals. There are a few places that count as counter service restaurants on the dining plan, but are really glorified snack stands, and while full meals are available, some don’t have vegetarian choices.

Epcot is easily the best park for counter service meals for vegetarians.

Sunshine Seasons, which is located in the Land pavilion in Future World, (if you’ve ever ridden Soarin, you’ve walked right past it,) is possibly the best in all of Disney for vegetarians. There are four separate sections for food, the grill, salads, Asian, and sandwiches, and every section, except for the grill, has a vegetarian selection. A vegetable and tofu bowl at the Asian section, a roasted beet and goat cheese salad at the salad section, and a vegetable flatbread sandwich at the sandwich section. I’ve personally had the roasted beet and goat cheese salad and the vegetable flatbread sandwich before. The roasted beet and goat cheese salad is delicious, and I enjoyed it before I even went vegetarian. It uses spring mix greens, (I detest iceburg lettuce,) candied nuts, a very creamy, though somewhat mild goat cheese, and sweet red and golden beet slices, all mixed with a sweet vinaigrette. The vegetable flatbread sandwich is pretty good too, though I can’t rave about it the way I do about the salad, but it’s still very good for a vegetarian option, I just wish it was served hot instead of cold. I’m sure I’ll be eating at Sunshine Seasons at least once this fall, probably more then that.

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Roasted Vegetable Flatbread Sandwich at Sunshine Seasons – September 2009

There is one other counter service restaurant in Future World, Electric Umbrella, which does have a unique vegetarian entree, (I count anything other then pizza, veggie burgers, and salads, as unique,) a black bean flatbread sandwich, and it actually sounds pretty good, but with all the other restaurants at Epcot, I’ve never tried it.

Epcot’s other (better) half is World Showcase. For those of you who have never been to Epcot before, World Showcase is a mile or so long stretch around World Showcase lagoon, (which is where Illuminations is held every night,) featuring eleven of the world’s countries; Canada, United Kingdom, France, Morocco, Japan, Germany, Italy, China, Norway, Mexico, and the American Adventure. There aren’t a lot of rides in World Showcase, but there is a lot of live entertainment, films in a few of the countries, and many interesting shops, as well as restaurants.

Canada does not have a counter service restaurant, so I won’t be eating anything there. United Kingdom has a fish and chips restaurant, that serves just that, and only that, so that’s out. France has a bakery, which is wonderful, and I could happily make a meal from their cheese plate and pastries.

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Peach Tart at Boulangerie Patissererie – October 2007

My favorite counter service in World Showcase is Tangerine Cafe in Morocco. It also has two vegetarian options on their menu; a falafel wrap, and a vegetable platter with falafel, couscous salad, hummus, tabbouleh, lentil salad, olives, and bread. I actually haven’t had a chance to try either yet, as I haven’t been back here since I went vegetarian, but their meat options, (especially the lamb wrap,) are delicious, and I love the couscous salad, which is also available a la carte.

Japan has a new counter service location, Katsura Grill, with one lone vegetarian option, a vegetable pancake, which just doesn’t sound that appealing or filling to me, so I probably won’t be eating there.

America’s counter service location is Liberty Inn, and has a black bean burger for their vegetarian option, which doesn’t sound bad, but I make homemade black bean burgers all the time, so while that would be a more then adequate lunch, it’s not something I would bother getting at Epcot with all the other options available.

Germany’s counter service location is Sommerfest, and they only sell sausage sandwiches, though the dessert choices are tempting; apple strudel, cheesecake, and black forest cake.

I’m not sure whether or not Italy has a counter service location. They had a kiosk open while one of their table service restaurants, Tutto Italia, was closed for renovation, but now since Tutto Italia is open again, I would imagine that the kiosk would be closed, but it’s menu is still listed on All Ears, (a great website that I use for a lot of my Disney trip planning,) and they’re pretty good about removing menus from restaurants that are no longer there. If it is open, there are pasta options listed that would be suitable, as well as cannoli for dessert.

Lotus Blossom Cafe in China has a vegetable stir-fry on their menu, but I’ve read online that it’s not vegetarian, due to some ingredient in the sauce. That’s enough to keep me from trying it, though I should probably go in and actually ask about it at some point.

Norway has a great little bakery, Kringla og Bakeri, which also serves a variety of sandwiches, which change daily, and there is sometimes a vegetarian option, as well as a potato and goat cheese tart. The desserts here are wonderful as well, and I’ve sampled many over the past few years, with my current favorite being the school bread, which is really just like a giant cream-filled doughnut topped with coconut and caramel.

Mexico has a new counter service restaurant, La Cantina de San Angel, which serves cheese empanadas for their vegetarian option. It sounds good, but I’ll probably stay away, since too much dairy bothers my stomach. I can handle dairy in small smounts, like a sprinkle of cheese in pasta or a salad, but something where the main focus is cheese? Forget about it.

So those are the counter service options for vegetarians in Epcot. Part two is soon to follow with Magic Kingdom, Animal Kingdom, and Studios, and then part three will focus on Downtown Disney and the resorts.