Our Epcot Anniversary Party

Click here for information on how this party was planned.

Because it was only 29 degrees out on the night of our party, they moved our dinner inside the covered, heated patio of Rose & Crown. However, we convinced them to let us go down to UK Pubside after dinner for the show and our desserts!

Our event guide, Rosie, met us in the lobby of Beach Club Villas around 7:15pm to escort us to UK Pubside. She was very good about keeping the secret from Patrick (although her call to the room a few minutes earlier probably would’ve given it away if he’d had any inkling what we were doing). Rosie brought us to the patio check-in desk for Rose & Crown and led us around the back to our table on the patio.

This is where Patrick figures out we’re having a private dinner

And this is where he sees that the Roots are there to take pictures!

Disney had made us personalized menus (which I kinda expected because our planner had asked me for a photo) and sprinkled confetti on the table.

Bad iPhone pic:

Our event planner, Tess, was there to check on us, as were the restaurant manager, our server, an Epcot lead, and some other official-looking guy. They all wished us a happy anniversary and checked to see if we needed anything else. Then we met the Rose & Crown chef, who wanted to see if we had any special dietary requirements before they sent out the custom menu I designed.

Earlier I had texted Tess about displaying our anniversary cake at the table, since we wouldn’t be sitting at UK Pubside til later. It was gorgeous!

For comparison, this is what our wedding cake looked like:

I couldn’t have been happier with our anniversary cake. In fact, the more I think about it, the more impressed I am by the little embellishments they added this time. There were the “handles,” of course, and intricate scallops, the teardrop shapes, and tiny gold dots stenciled on the top. And then there was the topper, which was made entirely out of gold-dusted fondant and took who knows how long to create. It fit the design perfectly!

Unfortunately, we sent the Roots off on a date night, so we only have our crummy point-and-shoot pix of the food:

My appetizer was Le Cellier’s Canadian Cheddar Cheese Soup

Why did we let the Roots leave – WHY?!!!

Rose & Crown’s Mixed Greens Salad with Warm Break Croutons, Crispy Bacon, Roasted Onion, Irish Cheddar, and Warm Bacon Vinaigrette

I had the Rose & Crown’s Tamarind-glazed Pork Loin served with their Irish Cheddar Potato Gratin and Epcot’s Baby Green Beans

Patrick had Epcot’s Lava Salted Salmon with Coral Reef’s Pepper Jack Cheese Grits and Epcot’s Baby Green Beans

I’d taken a chance on some Rose & Crown dishes when their menu changed right before I had to submit my request. The pork loin was not great—I think it’s just a case of Disney’s using lower quality ingredients at the in-park restaurants—but Patrick loved his salmon, and I got to steal tons of his cheese grits.

After dinner, we met the Roots again down at UK Pubside, where our server had set out our cake and desserts:

We also discovered Rosie down at UK Pubside, and she gave us some special 3D glasses that show you Mickey heads when you look at light sources—like IllumiNations!

I’ll try not to stick in too many IllumiNations shots, but I wanted you to see how fabulous the view is. The fireworks are HUGE and breathtakingly beautiful. Some of these shots were taken from further back along the wall, but when you watch it, you have a full unobstructed view from under the canopy, like in the shot below.

This was when I realized that UK Pubside is THE bestest place ever to watch IllumiNations


[Click here to listen along at home!]

After the show, we cut the cake and had our desserts. They’d forgotten the vanilla ice cream for the cake, but I didn’t remember either until about three days later… They had set out a glass of milk for me, and we ordered hot chocolate from our server (who had to run back and forth between Rose & Crown and UK Pubside, bless him).

Chocolate cake with Peanut Butter Cup Mousse and chocolate frosting under the fondant

Chocolate Peanut Butter Marshmallow Squares, Panhandle Pecan Tarts, Chocolate-Covered Strawberries

Butterfinger Bread Pudding with Vanilla Bean Sauce

Maybe it was because I had a piece of cake in my tummy the size of a dictionary, but the marshmallow squares weren’t as good as I remembered. Also, the Butterfinger bread pudding was just weird—dry and fake-tasting. But Patrick loooooved the chocolate-covered strawberries. (What about the Panhandle Pecan Tarts, you ask? I didn’t get to try one til the next day, after it had been smooshed to death in the bottom of our backpack. Not the optimal eating experience…)

We got to stay as long as we wanted (the exact words of our server), and I think we left around 10:15pm or 10:30pm. Rosie stood out in the cold the whole time and then graciously escorted us to the International Gateway on our way out—what a doll!

In all, a fabulous experience and one I’ll definitely do again, even if they stop allowing you to add dinner. I was most impressed by the level of service we got from Tess, considering we’d only spent about 1/100th of the cost of a large convention event. I highly recommend it!

For complete information on how this party was planned, click HERE. And for more information about planning small private events at Walt Disney World, click HERE.

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19 Responses
  • Kelly
    February 16, 2013

    Thank you for providing such great information! It looks like you had a fabulous time! Thanks Again!!!

    • Carrie
      February 16, 2013

      No problem!

  • Heidi
    March 27, 2013

    Carrie,
    I wanted to let you know that this looks like what we will be doing. I have talked to our event planner. It will most likely be 6 to 8 people and I am really excited! Thank you for all your help!
    Heidi

    • Carrie
      March 27, 2013

      Fabulous! I can’t wait to hear all about it!

  • Heidi
    March 27, 2013

    Do you know who I will work with for the cake? Is it Yvette at the yacht club?
    I am trying to do a custom menu. Did you just request what you wanted from around the world?
    Heidi

    • Carrie
      March 27, 2013

      Your event planner is your contact for the cake and the menu. S/he will send you menus to choose from, but you can also customize them or request dishes from elsewhere in Epcot. Depending on whether you have catering set up a tent to provide the food ($$$) or Rose & Crown provides the food, the chefs will let you know what they can make for you. Yacht & Beach Club will probably make your cake if you want it to be fancy. Epcot can only do very basic cakes.

  • michelel
    February 15, 2015

    This UK pubside no longer offers the option that you chose, correct?
    I want to do a 5 year anniversary with about 10 people here (after seeing your event!) and have dinner/dessert. It was super cost effective the way you did it.
    Do you have any other suggestions since the option you chose is no longer offered? 🙂

    • Carrie
      February 15, 2015

      The option we chose is still offered, but, honestly, you’ll spend as much as you would on a meal through cooked by the catering kitchen, so there’s really no advantage to having the restaurant cook your meal. We just did my birthday party at Pubside and had a full meal catered for almost exactly what we paid to have the Rose & Crown do our meal on our first anniversary. And they do *not* require an $800 kitchen tent and all that stuff my first planner told me about. Guess I need to update this post or make a new one about our latest experience!

  • Michelle
    February 16, 2015

    Oh wow. Ok! Thanks.

    Yes-Please update! Haha. I showed my husband your Tower of Terror and Epcot parties and told him I wanted to do that next year. I thought I would have to do more convincing but after seeing your photos he was totally on board. Score!

    We got married at Disney and he runs a Disney parks music website. We live 20 minutes away. Our twins love Disney – we take them almost every weekend. So although a vow renewal at 5 years is not in our budget – seeing how affordable you make these parties gives us something to look forward to! 🙂 thanks!

    • Carrie
      February 16, 2015

      That’s awesome! I can’t wait to see what you plan!

  • laina
    February 20, 2015

    I love the ideas you do for smaller parties. Do you have any good ideas for a nice “reception”. I am having a Small wedding at disney. There will be 6 people total. I would like to have my cake at the event, with champane and a nice dinner. Do you know if I can order a wedding cake from the floridan,like the ones they do for weddings. Do you know the approximate for a small 2 tier. My wedding will be Feb 14 2016. Any input you have would be appreicated .Thanks

    • Carrie
      February 20, 2015

      Hi there! For your group size, the easiest thing to do would be to book a private dinner through Private Dining at the Grand Floridian (407-824-2474). These are held on a fifth floor balcony, and you can see some of the high fireworks from Wishes if you time it right. You can choose food from their catering menu or (for a surcharge) get items off the menus of the resort’s restaurants. They can help you with a cake too. There’s not really such a thing as a *small* two-tier cake at the GF, unless you’re talking about mini cakes. The standard sized ones they offer start at around $220. You could do mini cakes, but those range from $25-$50 each and you’d need 3 of them to feed 6 people, so maybe it’s a wash in the cost department… Let me know if you have any more questions! I have links to descriptions of this type of event here: http://disneytravelbabble.com/how-to/private-party/

  • Melissa
    November 24, 2015

    Do you need park admission when you plan a small private event like this?

    • Carrie
      November 24, 2015

      No, you would just pay a $12.95 viewing fee for each person who doesn’t have a pass.

      • Melissa
        November 24, 2015

        Thank you! That’s what I thought.

  • Patrick
    August 4, 2016

    Hi there – I’m hoping to be able to book UK Pubside for a 5-year wedding anniversary dinner and dessert for November this year. We are staying at Port Orleans Riverside. Is there a more direct point of contact as I’m having difficulty getting someone who knows the slightest bit of what I’m talking about when I call in. Any insight is greatly appreciated.

    • Carrie
      August 4, 2016

      Ugh! POR seems to be notorious for this! But just recently someone on the DISboards was able to place an order there successfully. Have you tried calling the main resort and asking to speak to someone at Boatwright’s or the Food and Beverage management office? I think that would be my next step.

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