When I think of food served at a “Volcano Planet”, I would probably not think of the items created by Universal Orlando. A food tent located in the KidZone area of Universal Studios Florida for 2022 Mardi Gras works under the theme of a volcano. Two savory food options can be found here. The Papas Bravas, already reviewed, are served here. The other option created great disappointment within me.
Now in fairness, the disappointment lacked anything about the quality of this food item. In simple terms, I saw the word “sopaipillas” and created a sugary treat in my head. Then, I read menu description seeing one of my food adversaries listed as a main ingredient—butternut squash. I have been known to have allergic type reactions to the usually innocent vegetables like zucchini and squash of any type. I knew this food tasting would be brief and involve consulting other trusted guests also in attendance at Mardi Gras.
The Savory Sopaipilla, as Universal Orlando calls them, cost only $5.49 before discounts. The menu description for them reads roasted butternut squash, pumpkin seeds, pebre salsa, (and) cilantro. Based on current signage as of time of writing, this food item meets vegetarian standards not vegan though. Also, as has been common this year, not all ingredients are listed on menu board. Some cheese is included with these sopaipillas thus explaining vegan/vegetarian issues.
So, what did people think of these? First, the pattern of needing every aspect of the food item included in each bite for maximum enjoyment rings true. The cheese, seeds, squash, and salsa together earn respect in terms of flavor. Separately, they sink some in terms of quality.
The portion size surpasses expectations for an item at this price point. The spice level exceeded standard theme park spice but fell below the “louder, wilder, spicier” level.
Though most agreed flavors were good, the disagreements start with the issue of texture. Most guests I polled voiced that butternut squash sopaipillas were soft. Others voiced that they were a bit tough. The butternut squash component works as a key ingredient for this. The butternut squash texture mattered significantly in terms of enjoyment. Now, some compared these to the softness of sugary beignets. While others compared them to overcooked pizza rolls. My Mardi Gras word of “inconsistent” reigned true with this savory item.
As mentioned, the flavors were solid for this type of food item. As you journey through the food tents at 2022 Mardi Gras at Universal Orlando, may you be lucky with soft sopaipillas.
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