Experience Foodie Paradise during Virginia’s Largest Spring Food & Wine Festival at Busch Gardens Williamsburg
This spring, new flavors and thrills are in bloom as Busch Gardens’ Food & Wine Festival celebrates ten years on Thursdays through Sundays from April 27 – June 11, 2023!
Explore over 150 international flavors at 16 themed food and beverage locations throughout the park, with more than 40 NEW offerings, and a rotating menu of returning favorites at the ALL-NEW Decade of Delights location. Featuring a new lineup every week, Decade of Delights pays tribute to the top tastes of the past ten years, from specialty beverages to decadent desserts.
A complete menu of the Food & Wine Festival dishes and drinks can be found online at Busch Gardens Food & Wine Festival page.
The best way to sip and sample is with a Food & Wine Festival sampler lanyard. Guests can embark on their culinary journey and save 10 percent with a 10-sample lanyard starting at only $69.00 or extend the savings up to 20 percent with the fan-favorite 15-sampler.
In addition to the Food & Wine festivities, beer and cocktail lovers raise your glasses to the new OktoberTaps location featuring Perfect Pour technology with eight craft brews and four thirst quenching cocktails on tap.
Best Way to Visit and Ride – Busch Gardens Spring Sale
This popular food festival returns to take guests on an unforgettable culinary adventure with over 150 international flavors.
This is a great opportunity to sample cuisine from around the world and we do mean cuisine – this is not your ordinary amusement park fare.
Admission to the festival is included with park admission, and individual tastings range in price. If you have an Annual Membership make sure to present it when you purchase your food for a discount. You can also prepay for meal tickets – which will save you money.
Here is how the Food & Wine Festival works; 15 different kiosks are set up throughout Busch Gardens on Thursdays – Sundays & Memorial Day. Each one is easily identified with the Food & Wine Festival logo and a four-sided billboard telling you about the country you are sampling from and interesting food facts. Large signs with that country’s menus are near each kiosk. Pick up a Food & Wine Festival Guide located at each participating country, these guides include a map of the park, locating each kiosk and it also includes menus for each country.
Try food and beverage items not normally served at the Williamsburg theme park!
An array of specialty beverages, such as the all-new Tangerine Creamsicle Ale, Prickly Pear Margarita, Mango Caipirinha, Green Goddess and a variety of refreshing Sangria choices, will be available.
Enjoy live music and entertainment in France Plaza from local artists, Fridays through Sunday, April 29 through June 11:
Local Live Music at the Food & Wine Festival
Enjoy live music and entertainment in France Plaza from local artists, Fridays through Sunday, April 29 through June 11 during the Food & Wine Festival.
April 29 and 30A Richmond based duo, is the combined sound of the magnetic and soulful vocalist, Morgan Lynsey and the powerful pop singer and guitarist, Drew Dunbar. This modern-day Johnny and June share life’s crazy ride through forever friendship, forbidden love, heartbreak blues, and fiery passion.
2. Jessica Lynn
May 6 and 7Jessica Lynn is being hailed by press around the world as a rocket force and is quickly becoming a household name. A unique face and voice in modern music, she has been seen by millions on the road and in her three full-length nationwide concert television specials. Jessica’s powerful voice and fierce stage presence showcase the multi-faceted singer/songwriter’s instrumental talents playing piano, guitar, harmonica, and the drums.
3. Forest Hill Duo
May 12 Forest Hill Duo are local musicians performing at the Virginia Stage during the Food & Wine Festival.
4. Starting Early
May 13 and 14Starting Early is an indie rock trio made up of brothers Rory and Declan O’Donnell on guitars, along with Paul Mosimann on percussion. Drawing their musical inspiration from the greatest hits of the 60’s, the group pairs their one-of-a-kind beach-indie sound with an authentic vintage vibe.
5. Darcy Dawn
May 19 and 21With a voice like no other, Darcy Dawn sings an array of original songs and covers a large array of country music that will have you up on your feet and dancing to the toe-tapping beat.
6. Melissa Quinn Fox
May 20 Country/Americana songstress Melissa Quinn Fox is known best for her story-driven songs, unique vocal tone, and captivating live performances. Since releasing her first single give it a try in 2021, Melissa has been featured on national and international radio, while playing over 150 live shows each year.
7. The People Collection
May 26, 27 and 28 The People Collection is a Hampton Roads original band that brings an energizing eclectic and unique blend of Pop/Rock/Funk/R&B, guaranteed to get you moving.
8. Tyler Meacham
June 2, 3 and 4 By immersing herself in the open mic scene in her hometown of Richmond, VA, Tyler Meacham met her current bandmates, going on to create her debut EP, ‘Property’, in 2019. The lyrically inspiring, genre-fusing EP carried Meacham & her band on a national tour, building a loyal following in the process. Laid on strong foundations of narrative-forward songwriting, Tyler’s musical tastes and inspirations gravitate towards self-made songwriter-producers such as Sara Bareilles, Bleachers (Jack Antonoff), and OneRepublic (Ryan Tedder). Lyrically, everything Tyler writes pivots around emotional experiences from her past, honing in on love, loss, and her personal struggle with anxiety and self-worth.
9. Morgan Lynsey Band
June 10 and 11 The Morgan Lynsey Band continues to win hearts with their infectious charismatic energy and incredible musicianship. This dynamic group of musicians possess diverse instrumentation, killer vocals, and an unrivaled passion for music.
Taste of Busch Gardens:
There are many tasty reasons to come back week after week:
Here is a short run down including our favorite samples from 2023!
Located in Ireland, next to Castle O’Sullivan. Those that are a fan of Mac n’ Cheese then Hawaii is your place! The ham & pineapple cheese is going to be a hit with the kiddo’s and teens! The iced Hibiscus Lemonade is a great non-alcoholic treat on a hot day if you have non-drinkers or kids with you. We enjoyed a nice cold adult beverage while the kids had their Mac & Cheese.
This is the first Kiosk you will come to once you enter the park, it is located near the Train Station and horse stables. This is going to be a BIG statement but we think the She-Crab Soup is one of the best items at all the Kiosks. Try it for your self we don’t think your will disagree! The hushpuppies were a big hit with the teens…I mean bacon, bread, cheese and honey you really can’t go wrong!
Located near the Loch Ness Monster is the Australian Kiosk. The lamb chop is a MUST and one of the best food items in the Wine & Food Festival (that we tried). The Aussie Mule was pretty delicious too. Not too sweet and very refreshing (note this is an adult beverage).
Located in France across from the Royal Palace Theater. Our sweet tooth took over and we ordered two desserts. The Bananas Foster Cheesecake came out on top over the Beignets. You can definitely split either of these between two people.
Located in New France, next to the Trapper’s Smokehouse. We’ve heard wonderful things about the Brazilian Kiosk over the years! The Churrasco is a must, this is grilled beef with a chimichurri sauce. It paired so well with the Malbec wine. The Linguica (Brazilian sausage) is also worth a try. Also to note if you enjoy mixed drinks this is your opportunity to try the Mango Caipirinha, made with cachaca, mango & lime!
Located in Italy, near The Battering Ram. GET the Mushi-Gyoza (steamed chicken dumplings)!!! I had to try the Bubble Tea, it was good, cold and sweet. I am not a huge fan of tapioca balls but lucky they tend to stay at the bottom so it wasn’t a big deal. I was super excited to try the Matcha Ice Cream!!
For those with a sweet tooth you need to try the Pineapple Upside cake…yummy!!!! Sorry we ate it before we got a picture…
Both tacos were good. The dessert is a must, sweet chocolate with a surprise chili kick at the end. I’m going to learn to make this at home!
Located in Germany across from Verboten. They have draft beers, frozen cocktails and ciders. Both the Bellini and Bahama Mama were delicious!
Plant-based options (vegan friendly) are available in Japan and Garden Glass
The park has 3 wine-tasting experiences and everyone receives a complimentary souvenir glass ( Bella Casa, La Belle Maison and Germany Gifts).
Scotch Tasting located at Tweedside gifts.
Now here are a few insider tips:
Admission to the festival is included with park admission, and individual tastings range in price. Food portions are generous sampling size so you can visit several countries. You can save a little cash if you choose to do a Food or Wine Sampler.
If you like wine, they have tastings at 3 different locations.
Wine tastings is a fun addition to the Festival. If you like the wine and want to buy a bottle – you can buy right at the tasting. They will even uncork it so you can enjoy it all around Busch Gardens with your friends. They will put it in a gift bag (if it is a red) or you can purchase a cooler bag from a gift store and fill it with ice if it is a white. We saw many folks walking around with their newly purchased bottles and sharing them with their party.
Your kids will delight at The Art of Food – where food becomes art. In 2016 in Ireland Greg Butauski and his team made a turtle from a butternut squash!
Cheers to another great Food & Wine Festival!
WilliamsburgFamilies.com is a blogger for Busch Gardens. Affiliate links are included in this post.