The Christmas season is my absolute favorite time of the year. Growing up, one of the little things I loved most was getting an Advent calendar and counting down the days until Santa would be coming down the chimney. As I grew older, I had to leave Advent calendars in the rear view mirror,* but I still miss that daily countdown building anticipation to the big day. So, we’re going to start a virtual Advent calendar here at TouringPlans. For 2014, we are going to countdown our favorite drinks at Walt Disney World and the Universal Orlando Resort.
Criteria: Drinks can be alcoholic or nonalcoholic. Drinks can come from any venue on property as well as the Disney Cruise Line. Bonus points awarded for atmosphere where drink is served. Any drink with glow cubes is immediately disqualified. Ready? Let’s go!
DAY TWENTY FIVE: Butterbeer (all versions) at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter (Universal Orlando Resort)
The Game Changer.
When the Wizarding World of Harry Potter – Hogsmeade Village opened in 2010, it was a brand new day at the Universal Orlando Resort. Guests were leaving with bags filled with Potter merchandise, a stark contrast for a resort that sold a ton of Thing 1 & Thing 2 shirts, but little else of note. Harry Potter and the Forbbiden Journey had a queue that guests wanted to spend more time in. Imagine that. In a world where theme parks are spending Millions (if not Billions) on getting guests through queues quicker, guests wanted to stay longer in the elaborate Forbidden Journey queue. As Vizzini would say, “Inconceivable!”
But what no one was prepared for was a little drink called Butterbeer. To say it was popular may be the understatement of the century, as Universal celebrated selling one million Butterbeers just six months after their debut. It is said that Universal made enough money of the sale of Butterbeer in those six months to completely cover the entire cost of the Wizarding World. Since the very first drinks were poured, guests have debated which was better: regular Butterbeer or frozen Butterbeer. The answer? Neither, the Hot Butterbeer is clearly the best. They are all so good they are going to collectively get the # 1 spot and, what the heck, we’re going to add in Butterbeer Ice Cream from Florean Fortescue’s as well!
PREVIOUS DRINKS OF CHRISTMAS:
DAY ONE: Shark Attack at Chez Alcatraz
DAY TWO: Grand Marnier Slush at Epcot
DAY THREE: Flaming Moe at Moe’s Tavern
DAY FIVE: Mai Tai at Emeri’s Tchoup Chop
DAY SEVEN: Pumpkin Fizz at the Three Broomsticks
DAY EIGHT: Old Fashioned at Belle Vue Lounge
DAY ELEVEN: Tongue Tying Lemon Squash at the Leaky Cauldron
DAY TWELVE: Sugar Cane Mojito at Dawa Bar
DAY THIRTEEN: Pint of Guinness at Raglan Road
DAY FOURTEEN: Hog’s Head Brew at the Hog’s Head
DAY FIFTEEN: Burnt Orange at Todd English’s bluezoo
DAY SIXTEEN: Fishy Green Ale at Fountain of Fair Fortune
DAY SEVENTEEN: Balsamic Grand at Palo
DAY EIGHTEEN: Buffalos and Bacon at The Cowfish
DAY NINETEEN: La Fin du Monde at Epcot
DAY TWENTY: Dragon Scale at the Hopping Pot
DAY TWENTY ONE: Maelstrom Margarita at La Cava del Tequila
DAY TWENTY TWO: Carl’s Combo at Rose & Crown
DAY TWENTY THREE: Duff Beer at Duff Brewery
DAY TWENTY FOUR: Lapu Lapu at Disney’s Polynesian Village Resort
See you tomorrow for the next entry into the 25 Drinks of Christmas Countdown, where we are going to head into Epcot’s World Showcase. If you had fun, be sure to check out The Magic, The Memories, and Merch! and Saturday Six articles, or, for your listening pleasure, check out the Pardon the Pixie Dust podcast. Your humble author can also be seen producing typos at an inhuman rate on Twitter: @derekburgan
Interested in theme park drinks? Then do we have a eBook for you! The Walt Disney World Bars and Lounges eGuide by Brian McNichols. Over 250 pages and containing well over 400 photos, this eGuide takes you through EVERY bar and lounge on WDW property (trust me, Brian has the kidneys problems to prove it!) Also included? Recipes for some of your favorite WDW drinks. Ratings, descriptions, and photos for each of the 70+ bars and lounges. Talk about the perfect Christmas present!
Special thanks to crack staff photographer Brandon Glover and Megan Stump for their invaluable assistance with this article. Be sure to also check out Brandon on The Park Blogger podcast with co-hosts Aengus Mackenzie and Brian Carey.
*That is an absolutely lie. I still buy an advent calendar every year with chocolates in it, and I also buy an annual box of Christmas Crunch, but we’ll keep that between us.