Monday, May 18, 2009

You are what you eat

The International Food Blogger Conference wrapped up yesterday evening after a weekend of fascinating panels, presentations, blogging, podcasting, tweeting, and of course, amazing food from regional chefs and food producers.

The final panel of the day, "Passionate Purveyors & Producers" featured four speakers promised to "change the way you feel about commodity food:" Lauren Adler of Chocolopolis; Carrie Oliver from Oliver Ranch; Luke Dirks from Stumptown Coffee Roasters, Karl Kupers of Shepherd's Grain. The weekend couldn't have ended on a more appropriate panel. Moderated by's Barnaby Dorfman, the panelists definately delivered on the promise to change the way you think about steak, chocolate, coffee, and even grains...foods that a lot of us consume on a weekly, if not daily, basis. Oliver convinced me not only to try hosting a beef tasting in the same manor that one might do a wine tasting, but she made everyone rethink the USDA standards for "organic." Adler highlighted the political and socioeconomic issues--and highly competitive nature--of the growing and harvesting of cacao beans.

Throughout the weekend, the International Food Blogger Conference introduced attendees to amazing foods, and of course, the best ways to share the love of food with readers through blogs. But beyond the amazing cheeses, oysters, wines (oh, the wines...) and everything else consumed, it seems that conference attendees were energized to share a renewed sense of appreciation for what we eat and where it comes from. It is, afterall, about the food. I for one am excited to see the variety of posts from bloggers who attended the conference. And for those who missed the conference, a snapshot of each session--in the form of podcasts--will be available shortly on the IFBC website.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I need to pack my gym bag and start Phase One of the South Beach Diet to recover. Unfortunately, portion control and carb cutting were not key topics this weekend!

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