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Grand Opening Event! Via Napoli Ristorante e Pizzeria at Epcot’s Italy Pavilian – Photos and Video

Hi everyone!

We went to the Via Napoli Ristorante grand opening ceremony at Epcot yesterday, which included Italy streetmosphere characters stomping on grapes (below, left) as well as Mickey and Minnie making their entrance in a horse-drawn carriage (below, right). This wasn’t our first visit to Via Napoli, we have photos and a review from the first day it was open – but now Via Napoli is officially open for guests (and you can make reservations!)

Disney ambassador Clay Shoemaker (below, left) welcomed the crowd. Speakers also included Epcot Vice President Dan Cockerell (below, right) who said he was “thrilled about this significant expansion”.

Patina Restaurant Group CEO Nick Valenti (below, left) said that he was “delighted to be bringing my passion, which is the art of authentic Neapolitan pizza, to Walt Disney World”. Mickey and Minnie return to the stage with the granddaughter of Mr. Valenti to assist with the ribbon cutting (below, right).

Mickey and Minnie Mouse join Dan Cockerell and Nick Valenti in cutting the ribbon to officially open Via Napoli Ristorante (below left and right). Fireworks and confetti were shot into the air and shower the crowd!

Taking a break from stomping grapes (below, left), cast members pose for a photo. Minnie Mouse had been offered a beautiful bouquet of flowers (below, right), which she carried with her while posing for photos.

Video #1 – Epcot Via Napoli Ristorante Grand Opening Ceremony 8/5/10 – This is the opening ceremony with Epcot VP Dan Cockerell, Patina Group CEO Nick Valenti, Disney Ambassador Clay Shoemaker, Mickey and Minnie Mouse.

Mickey and Minnie Mouse greet a young guest (below, left). Minnie opens her arms for a hug (below, right). The little girl who is off-camera here ran into Minnie’s arms.

Via Napoli cast members greet guests as we arrive into the restaurant (below, left). A Mickey shaped pizza is seen in front of one of Via Napoli’s 3 ovens (below, right).

Video #2 – Patina Group CEO Nick Valenti Tells Back Story of Via Napoli at Epcot – Patina Group CEO Nick Valenti about the back story of the restaurant (I had heard some of it previously, but not quite correctly). It’s common at Walt Disney World for attractions, restaurants and even shops to have a back story and it makes it more interesting!

A Via Napoli server holds a tray of Gelato Frizzante ($9) desserts (below, left) This dessert is described as “Ice Cream Soda, Italian Style”.  We really enjoyed the Fritto Misto ($24), which was an assortment of calamari and just-fried seasonal vegetables (below, right).  The asparagus was incredible!  We were served an assortment of Acqua Fresca drinks, the strawberry is below (and includes fresh strawberries in the glass). These are $5 and don’t include refills.

We tried an assortment of pizza slices, including the Carciofi with artichokes and pecorino cheese  (below, left) and the Margherita (below, right).

Two more slices include the Quattro Formaggi (3 cheese pizza), and a slice not listed on the menu – we didn’t taste any cheese, but this was actually a favorite of ours! We were told that it had basil and olive oil on it, and I never thought it’d be as tasty as it was.

The tiramasu ($8) was creamy and wonderful (below, left). Arrivederci from the staff of Via Napoli as we exit the resturant (below, right).

For many more great photos, please check out MouseSteps latest update HERE!

Epcot Center Historical DVDs – Available Now:

In keeping with the Epcot spirit of today’s update, I present my Epcot Center Historical Collection to relive these wonderful memories or experience them for the first time!

Click on any cover for more information

Click HERE for more information or to browse all of my Epcot Center DVDs!

Latest Release – Disney Theme Park Seasonal Celebrations:

Jeff Lange Experiences: Disney Theme Park Seasonal Celebrations

Jeff Lange brings you this latest DVD in a series that features one-of-a-kind experiences that you can only find in the Disney theme parks!

Features: Happy Easter Parade (Magic Kingdom, 2010), Disney’s Celebrate America! A Fourth of July Concert in the Sky (Magic Kingdom, 2010), Halloween Screams – A Villainous Surprise in the Skies (Disneyland, 2009), Mickey’s Jingle Jungle Parade (Animal Kingdom, 2009), “Let There Be Peace On Earth” Fireworks Finale (Epcot, 2009) and Lights, Camera, Happy New Year! Fireworks Spectacular (Disney’s Hollywood Studios, 2009)

Running Time: 66 Min

For more information

or to purchase this item, please click HERE.

Magic Kingdom Summertime 2010:

Jeff Lange’s Magic Kingdom Summertime 2010 (Featuring SpectroMagic, Summer Nightastic! Fireworks Show, Main Street Electrical Parade and more!)

Jeff Lange brings the grandeur of Spectromagic, the brilliance of the Main Street Electrical Parade, and the dazzling display of the Summer Nightastic! Fireworks Show to your door with Jeff Lange’s Magic Kingdom Summertime 2010.

Featurers: SpectroMagic (Final showing of the season 06/05/10), Summer Nightastic! Fireworks Show (Premiere 06/06/10), Main Street Electrical Parade (Premiere 06/06/10) plus, BONUS: “Top of the World” Fireworks Viewing (2010)!

Running Time: 66 Min

For more information

or to purchase this item, please click HERE.

Vintage Disney-MGM Studios:

Jeff Lange Remembers: Disney-MGM Studios Classics – Vol 1

Jeff Lange takes you on a trip back in time to experience the early years of the Disney-MGM Studios. This first volume in a series features the following vintage footage:

Studios Entrance Scenes (1989-1992), Here Come The Muppets (1991), Soundstage Restaurant (1992), The Studio Showcase (1992), Star Today Ceremony (1992), The Great Movie Ride (1991) and more!

Running Time: 66 Min

For more information

or to purchase this item, please click HERE.

Also available: Jeff Lange’s Disney-MGM Studios Parade Classics – 20th Anniversary Collectors Edition DVD

Walt Disney World Vintage Footage:

wdw-1986-coverJeff Lange DVD Presents: Bob Welbaum’s Walt Disney World 1986 DVD

Jeff Lange turns back the clock to 1986, where you will experience Walt Disney World through the eyes of Disneyana documentarian Bob Welbaum. This incredible vintage footage includes select narration from Mr. Welbaum, who shot this video before recording was commonplace.

Walt Disney World 1986 contains clips from the following: Walt Disney World Resorts, Original Disney Shopping Village, Epcot Center, Discovery Island, Magic Kingdom, Seven Seas Lagoon and much more!

Running Time: 65 Min

For more information

or to purchase this item, please click HERE.

Also available: Jeff Lange Remembers: Fantasyland Classics and Jeff Lange Remembers: Tomorrowland Classics

As always, if you want to request a future DVD idea, Photo Memory topic or comment on anything, just drop me a line at suggestions@JeffLangeDVD.com.