The 2019 Epcot Flower & Garden Festival features four new Outdoor Kitchens serving up fresh and seasonal food. Trowel & Trellis is the first in this set of four and the booth focuses on unique twists to traditional food dishes. The Outdoor Kitchen is sponsored by IMPOSSIBLE Foods, who also sponsored the Earth Eats booth at the 2018 Food & Wine Festival. IMPOSSIBLE Foods is all about finding inventive ways to create dishes that are completely plant based. But a sample of some of their recipes will leave you thinking you're enjoying a real piece of juicy meat instead of a plant-based alternative. So when I heard they were sponsoring a booth at Flower & Garden, I was eager to discover what they would serve up.
First up we have the Grilled Street Corn on the Cob with Savory Garlic Spread. Directly behind the booth, which is located in Showcase Plaza just a few steps away from the Odyssey, there are two outdoor grills where chefs are cooking up these delicious pieces of corn. I love show kitchens like this because you get to see the chefs at work and in this case they were very approachable and happy to talk more about food with me. The smell of corn on the cob grilling away instantly reminded me of county fairs I remember visiting as a kid. It's a distinct and nostalgic smell and I was ready to try some food.
Upon taking my first bite, I did initially notice that the corn itself is not as smoked or charred on the exterior as you may have experienced before. Then, after my first taste I was surprised to discover that the corn was incredibly fresh and light but still rich with the garlic spread as opposed to typical melted butter. It was just as messy and delicious as traditional corn on the cob, but still had a lightness that I couldn't pinpoint. While talking with the chef, he told me that the corn is soaked in a combination of lemon juice and white wine vinegar before grilling and covered in the garlic spread which also included parsley and chives. This was absolutely delicious and I think both the lemon and chives brought a unique angle to corn on the cob. I devoured each last bite as the garlic dripped down my fingers. The chef then informed me that if I enjoyed the corn, that I had to try the next item on the menu.
The Farmhouse Meatball is served on a lentil bread wrap along with spinach, marinated vegetables and a creamy herb dressing. The meatball itself is entirely plant-based. The chef stated that it comes already prepped, so he wasn't exactly sure on the specific list of ingredients. However, he did say that some of the vegetables included are beets which give the plant-based meat a bleeding red color as if it was steak. But you don't taste that distinct beet flavor. It was very juicy and hearty like a real piece of meat, but again with a lightness that is very enjoyable. But what I loved most was the lentil bread wrap. Apparently this bread is gluten free, but the menu doesn't list the item as so. The lentils are mixed with Indian spices such as cardamon and turmeric giving it a real exotic flare but without an overpowering spicy flavor.
Finally we have dessert with the Chocolate Pudding Terrarium. This is another interesting item that is more than your typical tub of chocolate pudding. This version is mixed with avocado cream. You don't taste the avocado, but again it lightens the otherwise rich and dense chocolate dessert. It's then sprinkled with green matcha crumbs that add a nice touch of color and some pomegranate seeds for a fruity kick. It's a unique dessert that maintains a recognizable rich pudding taste but with an interesting undertone brought by the avocado. I liked it, but after a few more bites, I didn't love it. There was too much of a floral taste to it for me. I did also expect a more interesting presentation with the use of the word 'terrarium'. But the assembly of the various ingredients is still beautiful to look at.
I washed all the food away with a refreshing drink; the Bloomin' Blueberry Lemon and Ginger Tea featuring Twinning's Tea. This was a perfect drink to enjoy in the hot Florida sun. It's a relaxing lemonade with a subtle hint of blueberry. The ginger is not too sharp but adds a fun flavor to it that I could've had again and again. There is also in alcoholic version of this drink served with Tito's Vodka for those looking for an adult kick to this fruity lemonade.
Overall, Trowel & Trellis is a solid booth. Not the best of the new booths, but a very close second place. All three food items are listed as vegetarian and the corn and dessert are listed as gluten-free. The two savory dishes are at a good price of $5.50 each; the corn on the cob is the better of two when it comes to value given that it is a good size. The Farmhouse Meatball is a little small and my only complaint. The Chocolate Pudding Terrarium is also an excellent value for money given that the container it is served in is pretty big for Epcot festival standards and priced at $5.00. The non-alcoholic drink is priced at $4.50 and along with the food items, eligible for a snack credit on the Disney Dining Plan. Trowel & Trellis is a strong booth and a good sequel to the experience I had with IMPOSSIBLE Food's sponsored booth at Food & Wine. It didn't knock me out of my socks like the IMPOSSIBLE Burger, but these interesting dishes inspired me to change up the recipe at home for corn on the cob.