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anyone have spare tickets?

I go to the Restaurant show, but for some reason always overlook this one.

I think the salt and tools might be fun but the pastes and jarred moles aren't my thing at all. I think the Mexican chocolate thing is saturated but what do I know?   I've never heard of it!

No spares, but if I don't go every day (which I never ever do anyway), you can use my badge. All we have to do is figure out where/how to pass the torch, as it were.


ETA: on second thought, maybe not. I'm afraid you'd sign me up for all sorts of e-mails and newsletters and sales calls and whatnot. <_<

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No spares, but if I don't go every day (which I never ever do anyway), you can use my badge. All we have to do is figure out where/how to pass the torch, as it were.


ETA: on second thought, maybe not. I'm afraid you'd sign me up for all sorts of e-mails and newsletters and sales calls and whatnot. <_<

i took you for a braver woman. oh well.

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  • 3 weeks later...
  • 1 year later...

Say hi to my friend Tracy: the Sticky Toffee Pudding lady from Austin. Rick Bayliss came by her booth and loved her desserts.

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There were a couple of booths with pink salt. Do you mean the stuff that gets carved into plates and bowls? I'll check the show directory later and get back to you.


Will also file a fuller report. For right now: it was HUGE this year, complete main level and lower level. Many of the usual suspects: teas, chocolates, hot sauces, but honeys were much in evidence as well.


The international pavilions were the coolest. Temperature-wise, that is. :lol:


The only A-list celeb I saw was Paul Prudhomme. And David Leite and Susie Heller, who are A-list to me.

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Overall trend impressions:

  • The beehives must be back to health. I noticed what seemed like a high number of honey purveyors.
  • Single-origin, organic, blah blah blah chocolates are big. So are expensive junky chocolates. So are cheap junky chocolates. So is anything chocolate. And cookies (but that's not news).
  • Hummus is big. Including stuff that bears little or no relation to hummus but is so called.
  • Ditto guacamole.
  • Teas -- black, green, white, and herbal -- are still big. However, decaf tea is not (exc. the herbals). Flavored teas are big.
  • Coffee, too, but I noticed ( = smelled) much less of the flavored crap.
  • And of course flavored waters, bizarre fruit drinks, fancy sodas (not many new ones, but the older ones were much in evidence).
  • Olives. Much more than pickles (unless they are artisanal) or peppers (peppadews were little in evidence for the first time in many years).
  • Hot sauces. Old ones die, new ones arise. I tasted none.
  • There are more and more good domestic and imported cheeses available here than ever. Even a triple-cream feta (swoon).
  • NOT present in the abundance I would have expected: gluten-free and/or nut-free stuff.

Weirdest things I saw (in no particular order):

  1. Veggie Cevapcici - Never had the real thing, so I don't know how much this tasted like it, but it wasn't half bad. Much better than another meat substitute I tasted that not even taco seasoning could save.
  2. Popped organic apple chips and
  3. Apple Clusters - Two different products from two different companies. Did not taste either. The popped chips look like freeze-dried apple slices, flattish; the clusters look like tiny popcorn balls. Each comes in a single serving bag that holds the equivalent of one apple. So let me get this straight: instead of just eating a fresh (conventional or organic) apple with very little waste, I should eat a highly processed apple product AND have packaging to dispose of? :huh:
  4. Flavored panko - Tasted the Italian-flavored version. If that's what an Italian tastes like . . . all I could taste was chicken, and it had no appreciable crunch (in fairness, it had been sitting for who knows how long). Also in fairness, it wasn't greasy like Progresso :angry: panko. One retail pack (a jar with terribly cute copy on the label, emphasis on the terribly) will coat 3 pounds of meat, fish, or seafood. I didn't ask the wholesale cost, but I imagine that the cost to the consumer is many times that of a bag of panko and some spices (or toasted coconut or Pommerey [sic] mustard).
  5. Raw vegan ice cream - The chocolate hazelnut version was . . . terrific. Good mouthfeel, good chocolate flavor, although the raw coconut in it came through much more than the hazelnuts. "We chose raw ingredients because heating destroys the nature enzymes found in food, putting the onus on the body's own enzyme production. Simply put, raw foods have higher nutrient values than foods which have been cooked." Very clever -- says nothing about accessible nutrients. MSRP: $6.99 for 8 ounces. Um, maybe I'll let my own enzymes work a little harder instead. And -- surprise! It comes from not from Brooklyn, but from Long Beach (Lawn Guyland).
  6. Gourmet du Village Brie Baker and Goat Cheese Baker - Doesn't everyone need a gifte shoppee package of a ceramic covered dish (the Brie baker is perfectly sized to hold a wheel of Brie!), some stuff to throw on top of it (dried fruit, sweet goo), and a little knife to spread the stuff once it's molten and tongue-burning?
  7. Ticings - Like transfers for home-made chocolate bonbons: edible stickers to put on top of cupcakes. Made of sugar, starch, and food coloring. Kind of cute, actually, very nice and professional-looking designs. You peel them off the backing and press them on top of the frosting. I suppose you could put them on store-bought mounded frosting, as long as you don't mind squashing it down. I did not taste.

I got to taste Tajin, the seasoning that Jaymes and others rave about. It is that good on fruit.


And the stuff I tasted from La Quercia (the Iowa prosciutto/speck/etc. producers) is also worth the hype. You can taste the happy pigs.


Also liked the tasty but unfortunately named Original Glop It On. A blend of finely chopped cheeses, olive oil, and herbs. Multipurpose. From Napa. (Rancho Gordo,* did you have this at Susie's house?)


Did not taste anything from the equally or maybe more unfortunately named Tastybaby line. From Malibu, "created by 2 moms on a Tasty mission!" Just makes me think of Jonathan Swift.


*And look out, RG: Susana Trilling of Seasons of My Heart in Oaxaca is starting a line of Mexican imports -- chocolate for drinking (and maybe later for cooking); jarred moles, chintestle (chile pasilla oaxaqueño paste), sea salt from Tehuantepec, and some kitchen implements.


I learned that Korea is now applying geographical indications to many of its products. Geographical Indications are something on the order of DOs and AOCs.


I also picked up some truly horribly written promotional literature, I don't know why, other than to feel superior.


Oh, and I actually bought something. :blush: A 10-inch chef knife. Well, it felt good.


It will be interesting to see what Flo Fab says in tomorrow's paper.


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Susana Trilling used to work for my business partner at her bakery in Austin. Way back when....might have even been her first job.

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