The life-size gingerbread house at Disney’s Grand Floridian Resort & Spa is celebrating its 10th anniversary this season. The house is constructed each fall in the lobby of the Walt Disney World resort hotel and is decorated almost totally with edible materials under the direction of Executive Pastry Chef Erich Herbitschek.
The house opened a couple of mornings ago to a long line of guests, and will operate daily from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. through December.
The gingerbread house is a working bake shop with cast members selling edible treats including cookies, lollipops, gingerbread ornaments, chocolate Disney characters, miniature gingerbread houses, traditional Stollen bread and more. Items range from $2.50 for a large chocolate cookie to $75 for a signature chocolate box with truffles.
Here’s a brief idea of what goes into making the edible decor:
• 1,050 lbs. of honey
• 800 lbs. of flour
• 600 lbs. of chocolate
• 600 lbs. of powdered sugar
• 180 lbs. of apricot glaze
• 140 pints of egg whites
• 35 lbs. of spices
It takes Grand Floridian cast members more than two months and 840 hours of labor to produce, cut and bake the 5,089 “shingles” used to decorate the gingerbread house. Over the years, it has been featured on the Travel Channel, Food Network and numerous other outlets.
In true Disney fashion, the house also contains several hidden Mickeys placed there by the bakery team.
A ribbon-cutting for the 10th anniversary, along with the release of a limited-edition trading pin, will take place Friday at 1 p.m. Chef Erich will be on hand to sign the pin and Disney cookbooks.