Connect with us

General

Forgotten Disney Legends: Ferdinand Horvath

Everyone knows about Disney's "Nine Old Men." But — over the past seven decades — hundreds of talented artists have made significant contributions to Walt Disney Studios releases. Today, Wade Sampson shines a spotlight on one the lesser known major talents to ever work to the Mouse: Ferdinand Horvath.

Published

on

"In 1921, I arrived in New York and when my forty dollars was spent I went to work painting window frames on Avenue A, hanging between the eleventh floor and the sidewalk, caulking and painting boat hulls on the Hudson River. After dozens of odd jobs, I went into stage effects, set designing, and finally into animated cartoons. In time I did some work for Harper's Bazaar and other New York publications, and finally found my way into book illustration. In 1933 I joined Walt Disney's staff in Hollywood and worked with Disney as a sketch artist, idea man, and model creator. After the outbreak of the Second World War, I went to North American Aviation and later to Howard Hughes in a technical capacity to work on confidential designs."

— F. H. Horvarth from the book,"Illustrators of Childrens' Books: 1744-1945" (Mahoney, 1947)

Ferdinand Horvath, a Hungarian immigrant and book illustrator, was born in 1891 and died of a stroke in 1973. From 1934-1937, he worked at the Disney Studios on everything from advertising to illustrations for a pop-up book to painting backgrounds and doing layouts to constructing three dimensional models (such as making a windmill for study for "The Old Mill") to character designs and gags for over fifty Silly Symphonies and Mickey Mouse shorts.

Horvarth was a versatile self taught artist who was often the victim of teasing while he was at Disney for his European looks (where he was thought to look like a Dracula character) and his quiet, intense, often negative personality. He was apparently still haunted by his near-death experiences during World War I where he spent almost three years in various prison camps.

Before working at Disney, he spent six years working at Paul Terry's "Aesop's Fables" studio and after he left Disney, he worked for a year (1938-1939) designing models and layouts for "Scrappy," "Krazy Kat" and "Color Rhapsodies" shorts for Columbia/Screen Gems. In 1940, he sculpted puppets for George Pal's Puppetoons.

For those more interested in this troubled artist, John Canemaker devoted a chapter to him in his outstanding book, "Before the Animation Begins: The Art and Lives of Disney's Inspirational Sketch Artists" (Hyperion Press, November 1996) and a few copies at a discounted price are still available through www.budplant.com.

After Horvath's death, Bruce Hamilton was able to acquire from Horvath's estate a collection of his concept sketches. They were offered for sale in Russ Cochran's comic art catalog — "Graphic Gallery #8" — with fifty pages of art from "Snow White," "Practical Pig," "Brave Little Tailor" and many more Disney cartoons including unproduced shorts like "Mickey and the Sea Serpent." Some of those wonderful historical pieces sold for as little as twenty-five dollars! This is a wonderful collection of Horvath's work that does not appear anywhere else. Unfortunately only two of the pages are reproduced in color and most Disney collectors are unaware that this publication even exists since it was a small print run almost thirty years ago.

In those days before Disney scholarship, Bruce and Russ struggled to find information about the then unknown artist because of Disney's decades long policy of not giving credit to artists. Horvath is not credited with working on "Snow White," which was perhaps one of the reasons he chose to leave the studio. But his unusual penchant for signing every piece of artwork he did resulted in the then current Christopher Finch book, "The Art of Walt Disney," to showcase lovely colored pencil renderings of the dwarves and Huntsman from "Snow White" boldly signed by Horvath. Which helped Bruce and Russ validate that Ferdinand did indeed do significant developmental work on that particular Disney feature.

At the time, Bruce showed the artwork to Carl Barks who firmly stated that "I consider Horvath to be one of the two finest illustrators to have worked for Disney during the Thirties."

Horvath's personal notebooks list that he contributed to the following Disney films:

RELEASED:

  • MICKEY MOUSE SHORTS: "Mickey's Man Friday," "The Band Concert," "Mickey's Service Station," "Mickey's Garden," "Mickey's Circus," "Mickey's Rival," "Moose Hunters," "Boat Builders," "Clock Cleaners," "Brave Little Tailor," "The Fox Hunt," "Alpine Climbers," "Polar Trappers," "Lonesome Ghosts," "Mickey's Trailer," "Society Dog Show," "Mickey's Follies" and "Magician Mickey."
  • SILLY SYMPHONIES: "Father Noah's Ark," "Old King Cole," "Lullaby Land," "The Pied Piper," "Cookie Carnival," "Timid Elmer," "Three Little Wolves," "Broken Toys," "Three Blind Mouseketeers," "The Country Cousin," "Woodland Café," "The Old Mill," "Little Hiawatha," "The Moth and the Flame", "The Worm Turns," "The Practical Pig," "Farmyard Symphony," "Merbabies," "The Ugly Duckling" and "Mother Goose Goes to Hollywood."
  • OTHER FILMS: "The Hot Chocolate Soldier" (Disney's special segment for MGM's 1934 release, "Hollywood Party" ), "Radio City Ballet" CITY (for Radio City Music Hall in New York) & "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs."

UNRELEASED: (although some of the ideas and concept sketches may have been incorporated into other films):

  • MICKEY MOUSE SHORTS: "Mickey's Toothache," "Mickey and the Sea Serpent," "Mickey's Barber Shop," "Stone Age Mickey" (also listed on some of his concept sketches as "Prehistoric Mickey"), "Mickey in the Navy," "The Legionnaires" and "Mickey in Pygmy Land.
  • OTHER FILM PROJECTS: "The Shy Little Bear,"" Ballet des Fleurs," "Slovenly Peter," "Reynard the Fox" (which was planned as a feature film and Marc Davis later worked on the project), "The Eskimo Kid," "The Wise Little Owl," "Gay Nineties," "Easter Bunnies," "Santa Claus," "Goldilocks and the Three Bears," "Don Quixote" and "Sinbad the Sailor."

Among Horvath's personal papers was a memo he had written for the Disney Studios in 1937. For historical purposes — and to bring further recognition to this often un-recognized contributor to the magic of Disney during one of its brightest periods — I am reproducing it here:

SURPRISE IN GAGS
By Ferdinand H. Horvath
February 22, 1937

In my modest opinion the most effective gags are those that will take the audience by complete surprise. The absurdity of the situation is an important factor.

Take for instance Captain Noah (in an old Fable Cartoon) diving overboard his ark to save his crew. Nobody in the audience knows what his purpose might be going overboard. We follow him to the bottom on the waters-keying up suspense. He reaches the bottom and without much fumbling, pulls out a plug. The flood waters start to whirl and to drain off rapidly in the best bathtub fashion, and the water running from beneath the ark leaves it high and dry atop a convenient cliff. I have never seen any gag yet in all these years that went over in a bigger way.

This in my modest opinion, is a typical example of a surprise gag: it seems logical, there seems nothing impossible about it, it is easily put over, clearly comprehensible to anyone, and yet the audience would expect anything else in the world to happen but that. There was no prop visible that would have given the gag away. It is for this reason that I think that gags of this sort are always superior to gags that necessarily need a lot of planting. Gags around convenient props that naturally lend themselves to gag situations are more or less anticipated by the audience. Take a sack of potatoes spilled on the cellar floor, and you will expect some character to take a spill when coming in contact with them. Flypaper ditto…precariously balanced dishes…garden rake to be stepped upon.

Referring to some outstanding gag sequences, which were also mentioned in the "gag tip sheet", as for instance Pluto's skating sequence, Mickey with the rubber nipple, and Pluto's flypaper sequence-all of these in my modest opinion are only mildly funny as gags themselves but they do offer good chances to the animator. However it depends on the animation whether a sequence of this sort will appear funny or not. Pluto is known as a clumsy dog. Add Pluto, plus skates, plus ice-and it takes no imagination to expect him to slide about, tumble, and do most of the things he actually did. Introduce Pluto and the flypaper and you know that he is apt to get tangled up with it. Anticipation gratified to the nth degree. Mickey with the overworked nipple gag is another example.

It has become more or less a rule to take any awkward character to place him near enough to something that might trip him, or punch him or cause him other bodily discomforts-the audience will anticipate such, and it will be dished out to them ninety-nine times out of a hundred.

Good surprise gags, well timed, and not being touched off to order when the audience expects it—are laugh getters, because they keep you on edge in expectant mood, they keep you guessing and fool you in the end. (As a fine example I want to mention the little pig unexpectedly reopening the door to pull the "Welcome" mat in.)

Take a gag situation in one of our recent pictures (The Clock Cleaners-which at the writing of these lines has not been released yet). The Goof, after being knocked coocoo by too much Liberty, walks in a daze over exposed scaffolding, narrow ledges, etc. He finally walks toward the camera on a horizontal ladder, on which very evidently one of the rungs is missing. Everybody chuckles in advance waiting for the Goof to step into space when he will have advanced far enough to set his foot on the missing rung. Sure enough the Goof does exactly that. It is funny as it is, because the whole sequence is so very well animated, and it surely won't misfire, but in my modest opinion, we passed up a completely ideal surprise gag situation. It might have been so much funnier if one of the rungs, two or three notches ahead of the gaping hole would have given away, and the Goof would have dropped quite unexpectedly. Or—after stepping safely over the hole caused by the previously established missing rung when naturally everybody expected him to drop into space, have him negotiate this dangerous spot successfully, keep him going for one or two more steps and then have a rung break afterwards when nobody would expect it. Here would be surprise, because people kind of expect him to fall where he won't. There would be a laugh at being knowingly kidded, and then there would be immediately another laugh-probably a much heartier laugh, after the Goof promptly broke through when everybody thought him safe. This, I believe illustrates clearly how a gag can be improved by its unexpectedness and correct timing.

Outline No. 10 dealing the Fox Hunt pointed out as an example one of my gags in that picture: the fox, hard pressed by the pack of dumb hounds, suddenly slides to a top (I hope without screeching brakes this time), and starts to scratch. The dogs do the same. If I am not dead wrong—this gag should get a laugh because it comes as a complete surprise, is natural action and totally absurd at the same time. The audience does expect the fox to outwit the pack, to dive, to dodge, to double back and trick the dogs in numerous ways but they will hardly expect him to play follow the leader.

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

General

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

Published

on

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

Continue Reading

General

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

Published

on

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

Continue Reading

General

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

Published

on

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

Continue Reading

Trending