Ratatouille, a Disney Pixar film about a rat who learns to cook in a storied French restaurant by hiding under the toque of a hapless garbage boy, debuted in theaters on June 29, 2007. In July 2014, more than seven years after the film’s initial release, Disneyland Paris opened Ratatouille: L’Aventure Totalement Toquée de Rémy (which translates to “Remy’s Totally Zany Adventure” in English). If a seven-year delay between a movie’s release and its theme park ride debut feels like a long time, well, Walt Disney World Resort in Florida is doubling down with Remy’s Ratatouille Adventure, an adaptation of the popular France attraction that will open to the public on October 1, 2021.
As explained by the Disney Parks Blog, the opening day for the new ride corresponds to the 50th anniversary of Walt Disney World’s opening in 1971. It will debut alongside a newly expanded France pavilion at EPCOT, which includes a new crêperie (aptly named La Crêperie de Paris). The menu for this restaurant, as outlined in a press release, sounds delicious: “sweet crepes, savory buckwheat galettes (naturally gluten friendly) and authentic French hard cider.” No word on whether the restaurant will feature ratatouille, but the idea of overly excited children noshing on rustic vegetable stew is delightful to imagine.
As nice as the food sounds, the ride concept is far more tantalizing. Per the Disney Parks Blog, “In this delicious new attraction, you’ll feel like you’ve shrunk to the size of Chef Remy as you scurry through Gusteau’s famous restaurant on a wild adventure for the whole family (no height requirement!).” If you haven’t had the pleasure of experiencing this ride in France, as I assume most of us have not, there are excellent ride-through videos available on YouTube. It’s really amazing how the ride transitions seamlessly between 3D screen-based mayhem (you must decide on which dish to serve the guests!) and a practical set featuring giant condiment jars and bus cart wheels (remember, you’re the size of a mouse). Each room of the attraction even features food scents that you’d expect inside a restaurant kitchen. Anyone know what artificial mirepoix-scented vapor smells like?
Disney World has been walloped by reduced tourism amid COVID-19 restrictions, so presumably the park is planning to end 2021 on a high note with these exciting new developments. Pretty smart move to lure us all back with the one thing we can all rally around: a love of delicious food, lovingly prepared.