How Walt Disney World Celebrated Cast Members for National Culinary Arts Month

Those who are a fan of the culinary arts may already know that July was marked as National Culinary Arts Month. Disney Parks Blog shared how they celebrated these incredible cast members that work in food and beverage all around the Walt Disney World Resort.

What's Happening:

  • July was National Culinary Arts Month and there was lots of excitement going on in the food and beverage department at Walt Disney World Resort.
  • Last week, Victoria & Albert’s reopened at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa. Cast members were able to be the first to experience this new reimagined upscale dining earlier in the month.
  • These cast members, who represent areas all across the resort, are each nominated by their leaders of the resort's Quarterly Awards.

  • A wonderful way to celebrate their achievements was a personalized dining experience just for them.
  • There were dishes and desserts crafted by the Grand Floridian culinary team, including the award-winning Chef de Cuisine Matthew Sowers, Pastry Chef Kristine Farmer, and Sommelier Israel Perez.
  • Food and beverage cast members brought the community into the celebration while inviting students from Valencia College to get a look at this restaurant before its reopening.
  • Many of them came from Valencia themselves and shared their own journeys. They surprised students with a $50,000 donation to the Valencia College Foundation to enhance its culinary program
  • Throughout July, food and beverage cast members across Walt Disney World were celebrated with opportunities to commemorate the important role they play on the Disney culinary team.
  • They had the opportunity to hear from many different industry experts, including celebrity chefs and Disney's very own culinary directors.
  • Recently, culinary leaders were invited to the latest events in the Leadership Speaker Series and heard from Chef Lorena Garcia and Chef Art Smith.
  • Chef Art Smith is a familiar name at Walt Disney World and a former culinary cast member of the Disney college program. He now owns his own restaurant at Disney Springs, Chef Art Smith’s Homecomin’.
  • Although this National Culinary Arts Month is over, Disney can't wait to celebrate all of the talented food and beverage cast members throughout the year.

What They're Saying:

  • “Experiencing Victoria & Albert’s as a guest for the first time was something so exciting and special to me,” said Allyson Hignight, Grand Floridian reservation agent. “From the beauty, care, and love that went into each dish to the service from the front-of-house cast and chefs working behind the scenes on the cuisine, flavors, textures, and presentation, it was truly a special evening.”
  • “It was an honor to be part of this well-deserved recognition moment,” said Chef Matthew. “Our team loves to create great food; this work is our craft and we are thrilled to share this immersive dining experience with our cast.”

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