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Even more concept art from the lobbies of the Disneyland Resort Hotel

You asked for it. You got it. Thanks to Nancy Stadler, here’s another series of photos that highlights some of the great pieces of concept art that are used to decorate the public areas of the Disneyland Resort Hotel.

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Every so often, I get something right.

By that I mean: I always thought that there might be a fun series of stories in writing about all of the great pieces of concept art that are used to decorate the lobby areas of the Disneyland Resort Hotel. But it wasn’t ’til last Thursday’s story got posted on this site and got such a strong response from JHM’s readers that I actually knew for sure.

So — sometime in the not-so-distant future — the staff of JimHillMedia will officially get started on the Disneyland Hotel concept art project. With our ultimate goal being a detailed photo archive (which we’ll keep here at the site) which would contain images of each single piece of concept art found in the public areas of the DL hotel. As well as a downloadable & printable version of a guide to all this concept art. Which would then (in theory) allow you to go to the Disneyland Resort Hotel and locate each of these concept paintings. So that you can then view all of these snazzy pieces of art in person.

Anyway … As a “Thank You” to all of you who wrote in to say: “That’s a great idea, Jim. I’d love to see a series like that up on JHM” … Well, here’s another series of pictures that the lovely Nancy Stadler took of all that concept art.

Mind you, some of these pictures were harder to get than others. Take — for example — this photo of the concept painting for the never-built Jazz Club that was proposed for New Orleans Square.

photo by Nancy Stadler

Try as she might, Nancy couldn’t get a picture of this concept painting that didn’t feature a sizable reflection. Which was kind of frustrating to Ms. Stadler. Given that she knew how much I wanted a decent photo of this particular concept painting.

Why for? Because this was one of the more infamous projects that never quite made it off of Disneyland’s drawing board. You see, Walt’s original plan for the second floor of New Orleans Square wasn’t just limited to a private apartment for the Disney family as well as Club 33. No, Walt also wanted to add another private club to the Anaheim theme park. Someplace where he & his guests could go and hear some of the greatest musicians of the day perform in a truly intimate setting.

From what I’ve heard, New Orleans Square’s Jazz Club would have only been able to seat 50-100 people at a time. That — just like Club 33 — it would have sold alcoholic drinks. And the way Walt had envisioned things unfolding was that — for his extra special guests — that an evening’s entertainment would start out with cocktails in the Disney family apartment. Then the group would have moved over to the Trophy Room at Club 33 for a sumptuious private dinner. After that, Walt’s group would cross one of the overhead bridges in New Orleans Square for an exciting evening of music at the Jazz Club.


photo by Nancy Stadler

Of course, Disney being a guy who was always a little bit ahead of his time, Walt was always concerned about his disabled friends. Those folks who wouldn’t be able to climb the stairs up to Club 33 and/or the Jazz Club. Which is why he wanted to have elevators installed at both establishments so that they’d both have handicap access.

Speaking of being a little bit ahead of himself, take a look at this concept painting of Disneyland’s new Tomorrowland that Imagineering legend Herbie Ryman painted for Walt back in 1965.

photo by Nancy Stadler

Mind you, this isn’t the first time that Herbie tried to envision a “Land of Tomorrow” for the Anaheim theme park. Take a gander at this Buck Roger-ish concept painting that Ryman did back in 1954. Back when Walt was still trying to get a handle on what this side of Disneyland might look like.

photo by Nancy Stadler

What I love about this concept painting is here — years before Disney actually got around to envisioning a monorail as a crucial part of the theme park — here’s Herbie already anticipating what Walt might like.

Of course, Ryman’s early take on Disneyland’s monorail system featured trains that hung down from their tracks. Rather than riding along on top of their beams, just as today’s monorails do. Imagineer *** Hennesy kept Herbie’s version of the monorail as part of his Tomorrowland concept painting …

photo by Nancy Stadler

… Which you’ll find in the upper left hand corner of this painting.

Speaking of this 1954 concept painting. Disney World fans may find something very familiar about this *** Hennesy painting. For (I’m told that) this concept painting actually served as an inspiration for the look & the styling of “The Future That Never Was.” AKA the Magic Kingdom’s New Tomorrowland, which debuted back in the early 1990s.

It’s this sort of stuff that I love about all the concept art that’s on display in the public areas of the Disneyland Hotel. You get to see all of these first passes at ideas. Stuff like Herbie Ryman’s original take on Disneyland’s “Peter Pan Flight Thru” attraction.

photo by Nancy Stadler

Now some of you may notice that — as Herbie originally envisioned this Fantasyland dark ride — that you flew counterclockwise to Neverland. Which (as every good Disneyland fan knows) is the exact opposite direction that the “Peter Pan” attraction runs today.

But me? What I like best about this early concept painting of the “Peter Pan Flight Thru” attraction was its entrance area. Where Ryman wanted to recreate a real street in London …

photo by Nancy Stadler

… So that your transition to the dark ride’s “Flying over London at night” sequence would be absolutely seamless. Mind you, I heard that — when Herbie was doing design work on Epcot’s U.K. pavilion in the late 1970s — he actually had WDI’s librarians pull this piece of concept art out of the archives. Just so he get the look & feel of this part of World Showcase just right.

You’ll see that a lot as you wander through the Disneyland Hotel’s lobby areas. All these little pieces of Orlando that were originally supposed to have been built in Anaheim. Take — for example — this painting that Herbie Ryman did of the inner courtyard of Sleeping Beauty Castle back in 1954.

photo by Nancy Stadler

This was back in the day when Walt wanted the area within the castle’s walls to have an authentic medieval flavor. Later — as the money begun to run out — Disney ordered that this concept be radically simplified. Which is how the original Fantasyland ended up with all this plywood bunting & banners. As if it were always “Tournament Day” at “The Happiest Place on Earth.”

Well, though this idea never ever saw the light of day at Disneyland, the Imagineers always kept this concept pretty close to their heart. And — when they began design work on Disney World’s Magic Kingdom in the mid-1960s — one of the very first ideas that they pulled out of the pile was doing an authentically medieval version of Fantasyland.

Me? What I love about this painting is that — once again — Ryman was anticipating what Walt might want. Did you catch the name of the shop in this concept painting?

photo by Nancy Stadler

Yep. That’s Merlin’s Magic Shop. Now keep in mind that — ‘way back in 1954– Walt Disney Productions hadn’t even acquired the rights to produce a movie version of T.H. White’s “Sword in the Stone” novel yet. Let alone begun development of an animated version of this same book. Yet here’s Herbie already making Merlin a prominent character in Walt’s Magic Kingdom.

Sometimes the changes that were envisioned are small. Take — for example — David Negron’s original version of the exterior of the “Snow White’s Scary Adventure” attraction. Check out the bizarre floral arrangements and topiaries that Negron wanted placed in front of this Fantasyland show building …

photo by Nancy Stadler

… These weirdly-shaped flower beddings & plantings were supposed to give you a sense that something’s not quite right about this attraction. Sadly, there ultimately wasn’t enough money in the New Fantasyland’s budget (More importantly, there wasn’t really enough room in front of “Snow White’s Scary Adventure”) for a surrealistic garden. Which is why this once-thought-to-be-important detail got cut out of the attraction.

Other times, the changes were enormous. I mean, think how much more fun the “Dumbo the Flying Elephant” attraction would have been if this part of Fantasyland had been surrounded by a circus train (Which was to have housed numerous fast food establishments)?

photo by Nancy Stadler

Again, it’s the little details that make this concept painting for me. Take a gander at the ticket booth at the bottom center of this photo. Where — keeping the whole “Dumbo Circus” theme going — two giraffes have poked their necks up out of the top of the booth.

That’s what I love about all this concept art. It lets us see what might have been or what used to be …

photo by Nancy Stadler

… Like Fantasyland’s old Midget Autopia. Last week, we reminded you of what the cars looked like. This week, we give you a peek at this kiddie ride layout.

All this old concept art also allows us to revisit Disneyland attractions that are supposedly still there but are currently closed to the public. Fondly remembered rides & shows like the “Sleeping Beauty Walk-Through” in Fantasyland.

photo by Nancy Stadler

You’ll find the concept art for each & every one of Eyvind Earle’s “windows” on the second floor of the Disneyland Hotel, in the upstairs corridor right above “Goofy’s Kitchen.” These paintings alone — with their striking color & design — are worth taking a trip to the Anaheim resort to see.

Anywho … That’s a quick taste of what you can find as you wander through the public areas of the Disneyland Resort Hotel. In the weeks ahead, look for a formal archives section to be set up here at JHM. Where — over time — we’ll be posting images of every single piece of concept art that can be found in the lobbies of this Anaheim hotel.

That’s it for this week. Hope you folks enjoyed today’s articles. Have a great weekend, okay?

See you on Monday!

jrh

Jim Hill is an entertainment writer who has specialized in covering The Walt Disney Company for nearly 40 years now. Over that time, he has interviewed hundreds of animators, actors, and Imagineers -- many of whom have shared behind-the-scenes stories with Mr. Hill about how the Mouse House really works. In addition to the 4000+ articles Jim has written for the Web, he also co-hosts a trio of popular podcasts: “Disney Dish with Len Testa,” “Fine Tooning with Drew Taylor” and “Marvel US Disney with Aaron Adams.” Mr. Hill makes his home in Southern New Hampshire with his lovely wife Nancy and two obnoxious cats, Ginger & Betty.

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Jens Dahlmann of LongHorn Steakhouse has lots of great tips when it comes to grilling

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Sure, for some folks, the Fourth of July is all about fireworks. But for the 75% of all Americans who own a grill or a smoker, the Fourth is our Nation’s No. 1 holiday when it comes to grilling. Which is why 3 out of 4 of those folks will spend some time outside today working over a fire.

But here’s the thing: Though 14 million Americans can cook a steak with confidence because they actually grill something every week, the rest of us – because we use our grill or smoker so infrequently … Well, let’s just say that we have no chops when it comes to dealing with chops (pork, veal or otherwise).

So what’s a backyard chef supposed to in a situation like this when there’s so much at steak … er … stake? Turn to someone who really knows their way around a grill for advice. People like Jens Dahlmann, the Vice President and Corporate Executive Chef for Darden Restaurant’s LongHorn Steakhouse brand.

Given that Jens’ father & grandfather were chefs, this is a guy who literally grew up in a kitchen. In his teens & twenties, Dahlmann worked in hotels & restaurants all over Switzerland & Germany. Once he was classically trained in the culinary arts, Jens then  jumped ship. Well, started working on cruise ships, I mean.

Anyway … While working on Cunard’s Sea Goddess, Dahlmann met Sirio Maccioni, the founder of Le Cirque 2000. Sirio was so impressed with Jens’ skills in the kitchen that he offered him the opportunity to become sous-chef at this New York landmark. After four years of working in Manhattan, Dahlmann then headed south to become executive chef at Palm Beach’s prestigious Café L’Europe.

Jens Dahlmann back during his Disney World days

And once Jens began wowing foodies in Florida, it wasn’t all that long ’til the Mouse came a-calling. Mickey wanted Dahlmann to shake things up in the kitchen over at WDW’s Flying Fish Café. And he did such a good job with that Disney’s Boardwalk eatery the next thing Jens knew, he was then being asked to work his magic with the menu at the Contemporary Resort’s California Grill.

From there, Dahlmann had a relatively meteoric rise at the Mouse House. Once he became Epcot’s Food & Beverage general manager, it was only a matter of time before he wound up as the executive chef in charge of this theme park’s annual International Food & Wine Festival. Which – under Jens’ guidance – experienced some truly explosive growth.

“When I took on Food & Wine, that festival was only 35 days long and had gross revenues of just $5.5 million. When I left Disney in 2016, Food & Wine was now over 50 days long and that festival had gross revenues of $22 million,” Dahlmann admitted during a recent sit-down. “I honestly loved those 13 years I spent at Disney. When I was working there, I learned so much because I was really cooking for America.”

And it was exactly that sort of experience & expertise that Darden wanted to tap into when they lured Jens away from Mickey last year to become LongHorn Steakhouse’s new Vice President and Corporate Executive Chef. But today … Well, Dahlmann is offering tips to those of us who are thinking about cooking steak tips for the Fourth.

Photo by Jim Hill

“When you’re planning on grilling this holiday, if you’re looking for a successful result, the obvious place to start is with the quality of the meat you plan on cooking for your friends & family. If you want the best results here, don’t be cheap when you go shopping. Spend the money necessary for a fresh filet or a New York strip. Better yet a Ribeye, a nice thick one with good marbling. Because when you look at the marbling on a steak, that’s where all the flavor happens,” Jens explained. “That said, you always have to remember that — the higher you go with the quality of your meat — the less time you’re going to want that piece of meat to spend on the grill.”

And speaking of cooking … Before you even get started here, Jens suggests that you first take the time to check over all of your grilling equipment. Making sure that the grill itself is first scraped clean & then properly oiled before you then turn up the heat.

“If you’re working with a dirty grill, when you go to turn your meat, it may wind up sticking to the grill. Or maybe those spices that you’ve just so carefully coated your steak with will wind up sticking to the grill, rather than your meat,” Dahlmann continued. “Which is why it’s always worth it to spend a few minutes prior to firing up your grill properly cleaning & oiling it.”

Photo by Jim Hill

And speaking of heat … Again, before you officially get started grilling here, Jens says that it’s crucial to check your temperature gauges. Make sure that your char grill is set at 550 (so that it can then properly handle the thicker cuts of meat) and your flattop is set at 425 (so it can properly sear thinner pieces of meat).

Okay. Once you’ve bought the right cuts of quality meat, properly cleaned & oiled your grill, and then made sure that everything’s set at the right temperature (“If you can only stand to hold your hand directly over the grill for two or three seconds, that’s the right amount of heat,” Dahlmann said), it’s now time to season your steaks.

“Don’t be afraid to be bold here. You can’t be shy when it comes to seasoning your meat. You want to give it a nice coating. Largely because — if you’re using a char grill — a lot of that seasoning is just going to fall off anyway,” Jens stated. “It’s up to you to decide what sort of seasoning you want to use here. Even just some salt & pepper will enhance a steak’s flavor.”

Then – according to Dahlmann – comes the really tough part. Which is placing your meat on the grill and then fighting the urge to flip it too early or too often.

“The biggest mistake that a lot of amateur cooks make is that they flip the steak too many times. The real key to a well-cooked piece of meat is just let it be, “Jens insisted. “Of course, if you’re serving different cuts of meat at your Fourth of July feast, you always want to put your biggest thickest steak on the grill first. If you’re also cooking a New York Strip, you want to put that one on a few minutes later. But after that, just let the grill do its job and flip your meat a total of three or four times, once every three minutes or so.”

Of course, the last thing you want to do is overcook a quality piece of meat. Which is why Dahlmann suggests that – when it comes to grilling steaks – if you’re going to err, err on the side of undercooking.

“You can always put a piece of meat back on the grill if it’s slightly undercooked. When you over-cook something, all you can do then is start over with a brand-new piece of meat,” Jens said. “Just be sure that you’re using the correct cut of meat for the cooking result you’re aiming for. If someone wants a rare or medium rare steak, you should go with a thicker cut of steak. If one of your guests wants their steak cooked medium or well, it’s best to start with a thinner cut of meat.”

Photo by Jim Hill

As you can see, the folks at Longhorn take grilling steaks seriously. How seriously? Just last week at Darden Corporate Headquarters in Orlando, seven of these brand’s top grill masters (who – after weeks of regional competitions – had been culled from the 491 restaurants that make up this chain) competed for a $10,000 prize in the Company’s second annual Steak Master Series. And Dahlmann was one of the people who stood in Darden’s test kitchens, watching like a hawk as each of the contestants struggled to prepare six different dishes in just 20 minutes according to Longhorn Steakhouse’s exacting standards.

“I love that Darden does this. Recognizing the best of the best who work this restaurant,” Jens concluded. “We have a lot of people here who are incredibly knowledgeable & passionate when it comes to grilling.”

Speaking of which … If today’s story doesn’t include the exact piece of info that you need to properly grill that T-bone, just whip out your iPhone & text GRILL to 55702. Or – better yet – visit  ExpertGriller.com prior to firing up your grill or smoker later today. 

This article was originally published by the Huffington Post on Tuesday, July 4, 2017

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Brattleboro’s Strolling of the Heifers is a sincere if somewhat surreal way to spend a summer’s day in Vermont

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Some people travel halfway ‘around the planet so that they can then experience the excitement of the Running of the Bulls in Pamplona. If you’re more of a Slow Living enthusiast (as I am), then perhaps you should amble to Brattleboro, VT. Where – over the first weekend in June – you can then join a herd of cow enthusiasts at the annual Strolling of the Heifers.

Now in its 16th year, this three-day long event typically gets underway on Friday night in June with a combination block party / gallery walk. But then – come Saturday morning – Main Street in Brattleboro is lined with thousands of bovine fans.

Photo by Jim Hill

They’ve staked out primo viewing spots and set up camp chairs hours ahead of time. Just so these folks can then have a front row seat as this year’s crop of calves (which all come from local farms & 4-H clubs) are paraded through the streets.

Photo by Jim Hill

Viewed from curbside, Strolling of the Heifers is kind of this weird melding of a sincere small town celebration and Pasadena’s Doo Dah Parade. Meaning that – for every entry that actually acknowledged this year’s theme (i.e. “Dance to the Moosic”) — …

Photo by Jim Hill

… there was something completely random, like this parade’s synchronized shopping cart unit.

Photo by Jim Hill

And for every piece of authentic Americana (EX: That collection of antique John Deere tractors that came chugging through the city) …

Photo by Jim Hill

… there was something silly. Like – say – a woman dressed as a Holstein pushing a baby stroller through the streets. And riding in that stroller was a pig dressed in a tutu.

Photo by Jim Hill

And given that this event was being staged in the Green Mountain State & all … Well, does it really surprise you to learn that — among the groups that marched in this year’s Strolling of the Heifers – was a group of eco-friendly folks who, with their  chants of “We’re Number One !,” tried to persuade people along the parade route not to flush the toilet after they pee. Because – as it turns out – urine can be turned into fertilizer.

Photo by Jim Hill

And speaking of fertilizer … At the tail end of the parade, there was a group of dedicated volunteers who were dealing with what came out of the tail end of all those cows.

Photo by Jim Hill

This year’s Strolling of the Heifers concluded at the Brattleboro town common. Where event attendees could then get a closer look at some of the featured units in this year’s parade…

Photo by Jim Hill

… or perhaps even pet a few of the participants.

Photo by Jim Hill

But as for the 90+ calves who took part in the 2017 edition of Strolling of the Heifers, once they reached the town common, it was now time for a nosh or a nap.

Photo by Jim Hill

Elsewhere on the common, keeping with this year’s “Dance to the Moosic” theme, various musical groups performed in & around the gazebo throughout the afternoon.

Photo by Jim Hill

While just across the way – keeping with Brattleboro’s tradition of showcasing the various artisans who live & work in the local community – some pretty funky pieces were on display at the Slow Living Exposition.

Photo by Jim Hill

All in all, attending Strolling of the Heifers is a somewhat surreal but still very pleasant way to spend a summer’s day in Vermont. And that’s no bull.

Photo by Jim Hill

Well, that could be a bull. To be honest, what with the wig & all, it’s kind of hard to tell. 

This article was originally published by the Huffington Post on Sunday, June 4, 2017

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Looking to make an authentic Irish meal for Saint Patrick’s Day? If so, then chef Kevin Dundon says not to cook corned beef & cabbage

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Let’s at least start on a positive note: Celebrated chef, author & TV personality Kevin Dundon – the man that Tourism Ireland has repeatedly chosen as the Face of Irish Food – loves a lot of what happens in the United States on March 17th.

“I mean, look at what they do in Chicago on Saint Patrick’s Day. They toss all of this vegetable-based dye into the Chicago River and then paint it green for a day. That’s terrific,” Kevin said.

But then when it comes to what many Americans eat & drink on St. Paddy’s Day (i.e., a big plate of corned beef and cabbage. Which is then washed down with a mug of green beer) … Well, that’s where Dundon has to draw the line.

Irish celebrity chef Kevin Dundon displays a traditional Irish loin of bacon with Colcannon potatoes and a Dunbrody Kiss chocolate dessert. Photo by Tom Burton. Copyright Disney Enterprises, Inc. All rights reserved

“Green beer? No real Irishman would be caught dead drinking that stuff,” Kevin insists. “And as for eating corned beef & cabbage … That’s not actually authentic Irish fare either. Bacon and cabbage? Sure. But corned beef & cabbage was something that the Irish only began eating after they’d come to the States to escape the Famine. And even then these Irish-Americans only began serving corned beef & cabbage to their friends & family because they had to make do with the ingredients that were available to them at that time.”

And thus begins the strange tale of how corned beef & cabbage came to be associated with the North American celebration of Saint Patrick’s Day celebration. Because – according to Dundon – beef just wasn’t all that big a part of the Irish diet back in the 19th century.

To explain: Back in the Old Country, cattle – while they were obviously highly prized for the milk & cheese that they produced – were also beasts of burden. Meaning that they were often used for ploughing the fields or for hauling heavy loads. Which is why – back then — these animals were rarely slaughtered when they were still young & healthy. If anything, land owners liked to put a herd of cattle on display out in one of their pastures because that was then a sign to their neighbors that this farm was prosperous.

“Whereas pork … Well, everybody raised pigs back then. Which is why pork was a staple of the Irish diet rather than beef,” Dundon continued.

So if that’s what people actually ate back in the Old Country, how then did corned beef & cabbage come to be so strongly associated with Saint Patrick’s Day in the States.? That largely had to do with where the Irish wound up living after they arrived in the New World.

“When the Irish first arrived in America following the Great Famine, a lot of them wound up living in the inner city right alongside the Germans & the Jews, who were also recent immigrants to the States. And while that farm-fresh pork that the Irish loved wasn’t readily available, there was brisket. Which the Irish could then cure by first covering this piece of meat with corn kernel-sized pieces of rock salt – that’s how it came to be called corned beef. Because of the sizes of the pieces of rock salt that were used in the curing process – and then placing all that in a pot of water with other spices to soak for a few days.”

And as for the cabbage portion of corned beef & cabbage … Well, according to Kevin, in addition to buying their meat from the kosher delis in their neighborhood, the Irish would also frequent the stores that the German community shopped in. Where – thanks to their love of sauerkraut (i.e., pickled cabbage) – there was always a ready supply of cabbage to be had.

“So when you get right down to it, it was the American melting pot that led to corned beef & cabbage being found in the Irish-American cooking pot,” Dundon continued. “Since they couldn’t find or didn’t have easy access to the exact same ingredients that they had back in Ireland, Irish-Americans made do with what they could find in the immediate vicinity. And what they made was admittedly tasty. But it’s not actually authentic Irish fare.”

Mind you, what Kevin serves at Raglan Road Irish Pub and Restaurant at Disney Springs (which – FYI – Orlando Magazine voted as the area’s best restaurant back in 2014) is nothing if not authentic. Dundon and his team at this acclaimed gastropub pride themselves on making traditional Irish fare and then contemporized it.

Copyright Disney Enterprises, Inc. All rights reserved

“Take – for example – what we serve here instead of corned beef & cabbage. Again, because it was pork – rather than beef – that was the true staple of the Irish diet back then, what we offer instead is a loin of bacon that has been glazed with Irish Mist. That then comes with colcannon potatoes. Which is this traditional Irish dish that’s made up of mashed potato that have had some cabbage & bacon mixed through it,” Kevin enthused. “This heavenly ham – that’s what we actually call this traditional Irish dish at Raglan Road, Kevin’s Heavenly Ham – also includes some savory cabbage with a parsley cream sauce as well as a raisin cider jus. It’s simple food. But because of the basic ingredients – and that’s the real secret of Irish cuisine. That our ingredients are so strong – the flavors just pop off the plate.”

Which brings us to the real challenge that Dundon and the Raglan Road team face every day. Making sure that they actually have all of the ingredients necessary to make this traditional-yet-contemporized Irish fare to those folks who frequent this Walt Disney World favorite.

“Take – for example – the fish we serve here. We only used cold water fish. Salmon, mussels and haddock that have been hauled out of the Atlantic, the ocean that America and Ireland share,” Kevin stated. “Not that there’s anything wrong with warm water fish. It’s just that … Well, it doesn’t have the same structure. It’s a softer fish, which doesn’t really fit the parameters of Irish cuisine. And if you’re going to serve authentic food, you have to be this dedicated when it comes to sourcing your ingredients.

Copyright Mitchell Beazley. All rights reserved

And if you’re thinking of perhaps trying to serve an authentic Irish meal this year, rather than once again serving corned beef & cabbage at your Saint Patrick’s Day Feast … Well, back in September of last year, Mitchell Beazley published “The Raglan Road Cookbook: Inside America’s Favorite Irish Pub.” This 296-page hardcover not only includes the recipe for Kevin’s Heavenly Ham but also it tells the tale of how this now-world-renown restaurant wound up being built in Orlando.

On the other hand, if you happen to have to the luck of the Irish and are actually down at The Walt Disney World Resort right now, it’s worth noting that Raglan Road is right in the middle of its Mighty St. Patrick’s Day Festival. This four day-long event – which includes Irish bands and professional dancers – stretches through Sunday night. And in addition to all that authentic Irish fare that Dundon and his team are cooking up, you also sample the fine selection of beers & cocktails that this establishment’s four distinct antique bars (each of which are more than 130 years old and were imported directly from Ireland) will be serving. Just – As ucht Dé (That’s “For God’s Sake” in Gaelic) – don’t make the mistake of asking the bartender there for a mug of green beer.

“Why would anyone willingly drink something like that?,” Dundon laughed. “I mean, just imagine what their washroom will look like the morning after.”

This article was originally published by the Huffington Post on Friday, March 17, 2017

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