31 August, 2010

International Food Blogger Conference (IFBC) 2010 in Seattle

To say that I am inspired and enlightened is a gross understatement. To say that I'm overwhelmed and dog-tired is also a gross understatement. But the positive so far outweighs the down side that, in the aftermath, what I'm holding onto is a big armload of inspiration.

In short:

  • Kathleen Flinn makes me want to be a better writer.
  • Penny de los Santos makes me want to be a better photographer.
  • Alex Jamieson makes me want to be better to my body.
  • Shauna Ahern makes me want to be a better blogger and just a better person, in general.
  • Dianne Jacob makes me confident to charge people what my talents are worth.
There was so much more inspiration. The event made me feel a sense of camaraderie, a validation of purpose, a road map that shows I'm on the right course.

Foodista and Zephyr, the incredible hosts of the conference, packed every waking (and honestly non-waking) moment of the three days chock full of sessions and gatherings. Most conferences I've been to give you plenty of free time. This one had events from 7:45am to 9:00pm. (You could choose to sit them out, but they were there for the taking.) Incredible, the amount of stuff that was packed into one weekend.

The sponsors (particularly Sur La Table, who gave us a generous bag full of kitchen swag, and Theo Chocolates who provided swag, chocolate, tours, and their warehouse space for this event) really provided us with great food and goodies. Thank you.

While the food and drink were incredible, the keynote speakers were great, as well. I particularly liked Kathleen Flinn's "Writing with the Five Senses", Shauna Ahern and Alex Jamieson's "Blogging for Specialized Diets", and Penny de los Santos' "Digital Food Photography" session.

I didn't attend every single event (I missed the wonderful James Oseland, editor-in-chief of Saveur magazine), nor could I possibly blog about them all, or post the hundreds of photos that I took. So, let's just stick to the digital highlights, shall we?


Hotel Monaco

Theo chocolates and Cupcake Royale cupcakes

Oyster Bill with Taylor Shellfish and their Geoduck Ceviche

Food from Jason Wilson of Crush

Modernist cuisine and Lisa Dupar Catering

Bookstore catered to foodies

Modernist Cuisine table

IFBC organizers Allan Wright (Zephyr Adventures CEO)
and Barnaby Dorfman (Foodista CEO)

Kathleen Flinn

Panel with Dianne Jacob, Kristine Kidd, and Amy Sherman

John Howie of Seastar and Linda Miller Nicholson w/ camera

Salmon Carpaccio from John Howie/Seastar

Steak tartare by Daisley Gordon

Fino sherry cocktail being made at the sherry party

Secret Sherry Society's happy hour with sherry and tapas

Tapas being made by chef of Olivar

Top Pot Doughnuts

Local foods panel w/ Jack Czarnecki, Debra Music, 
and Andrew Stout

Penny de los Santos after her talk that garnered
a standing ovation

Standing in line for the food trucks supplied only to IFBC
attendees. Incredible!

Photographers capturing the cook of the Skillet Street truck

Seattle Food Geek (Scott Heimendinger) and a line of
food bloggers

Pizza on the left was so fresh, I could have eaten a dozen slices

Pike Brewing had lunchtime beer offerings

Molly Wizenberg (of Orangette blog) talking

06 August, 2010

Foodportunity Knocks!

(This is a photo-heavy post today, my apologies!)

Once again, Keren Brown (aka. Frantic Foodie) has put on another successful Seattle food networking event - the fourth such quarterly Foodportunity event, held at the lovely Palace Ballroom on the anniversary of the first Foodportunity event last year. It's a great place for foodies, writers, chefs, producers and restaurateurs to network, mingle, and sample good food and drink.

As usual, there were many participating restaurants and food producers, as well as guest chefs and food writers. Here are some photos showcasing a few of those who participated. I apologize in advance if I missed key folks, or didn't name someone. There were so many people there--it was huge! So, these are only the highlights, certainly not a comprehensive listing of Who's Who.


Trophy Cupcakes

Il Fornaio and Keren Brown

Blackboard Bistro

Tom Douglas Catering

Thierry Rautureau

Restaurant Zoƫ

Fosse Farm

Il Fornaio

A la Mode Pies

Matt's in the Market


Blackboard Bistro

Brian McCracken and Dana Tough
(Spur Gastropub and Tavern Law)

Amy Pennington talking with people about her
successful book "Urban Pantry"

City Catering Company

Herschell with Tom Douglas Catering

Tamara Murphy (left)

Erik Tanaka from Tom Douglas Catering (center)

Ladies from Dish it Up! (two right)

Fresh Bistro

A la Mode Pies



Metropolitan Market

Starlight Desserts



Tweeting live about the event is a favorite pastime
for event goers! (See the Twitter screen in the background.)


SaltySeattle - Linda Miller Nicholson (in red)

Speed-networking event (Yashar Shayan, Sommelier, center)

Elissa of 17 and Baking (left)

Three lovely ladies - Linda Miller Nicholson,
Keren Brown, and Andrea Duchon

Thanks to Keren Brown for another fantastic night out on the town
with fellow culinary enthusiasts. Each event is better than the last!