Sam Eagle is the Regal Eagle at Epcot

Concept Art for Regal Eagle Smokehouse
Concept art for the Regal Eagle Smokehouse at Epcot.

When Epcot first announced that the quick service restaurant in the America Pavilion would get a new theme and barbecue menu, there was much talk about the new name, the Regal Eagle Smokehouse, and it’s potential connection to certain distinctly patriotic Muppet. On Friday Walt Disney World made it official by announcing that the one and only Sam Eagle is the regal eagle from which the restaurant takes its name.

The restaurant’s story is also signature Sam. The premise is that an annual barbecue competition is taking place that is “fit for all patriots and pit masters.” The brilliant name for this competition is Sam’s Centennial Cook-Off: A Salute to All Cook-Offs but Mostly Barbecue. You may remember Sam’s line from Muppet Vision 3-D is that is finale is “a salute to all nations, but mostly America.”

The main image here shows new concept art showcasing barbecue pit surrounded by outdoor seating. There is also an amazing new poster for the cook-off featuring Sam Eagle. Disney has also promised a line of merchandise featuring Sam, which, of course they are. I’m up for as long as it’s not tacky.

It was previously announced that the restaurant will feature signature dished from across the country including a South Carolina smoked sausage sandwich, Kansas City smoked chicken, Memphis dry-rub pork ribs, and North Carolina chopped smoked pork butt amongst other dishes. Read more on that HERE.

We can’t wait to dine at this the Regal Eagle Smokehouse and check out Sam’s influence.The food already sounds much better than the fairly meh offerings of the previous restaurant, Liberty Inn.

Regal Eagle Smokehouse is slated to open later this winter.