Highlights From Pebble Beach Food & Wine

I have wonderful friends. Friends who invite me to really cool things. Things like the 5th Annual Pebble Beach Food & Wine Festival. Squeals!

That’s what I was doing when my friend asked me to accompany her. 
Squealing like a maniac.

Here are some highlights from the weekend:

1. Chatting with Elizabeth Falkner. My friend Maegen is a super fan so it was a real treat on Sunday’s Grand Tasting that we got to talk to Chef Falkner. She was so friendly. It was cool to hear about her new restaurant in Brooklyn and how leaving San Francisco and closing Citizen Cake was very bittersweet.

2. Trying this from Jessie Santillan, Chef at The Lodge at Pebble Beach. I  don’t usually eat red meat but the beef was so buttery, it melted in your mouth. This was definitely one of the favorite things I sampled.

3. Seeing foie gras everywhere. Since foie gras will be banned in California beginning on July 1st, it seemed a lot of chefs were incorporating it into their dish. We tried a foie gras chocolate bon bon from Jason Fox, Chef at Commonwealth restaurant right here in San Francisco (which I’ve been meaning to try). It was interesting. It was a mix of sweet and savory that was enjoyable at first bite but the after taste left me not wanting seconds.

4. The desserts by Anastasia Simpson, Pastry Chef at the Inn at Spanish Bay. The trifle dessert was so decadent and rich with chocolate mousse, coconut and toffee pieces, but oh-so-worth it. There was also caramel popcorn that you could fill in paper cones as this man is doing here. I was in dessert heaven and a sugar coma all at once.

5. The candy display from Fiji, one of the sponsors. I love candy. It’s probably why I have so many cavities. Fiji was handing out free blue gummies, jelly beans, rock candy, etc. It was fantastically blue.

And the list goes on and on. There was this one dessert we tried from Dahlia Narvaez, Pastry Chef from Mozza, that was incredible. It was sort of like rice pudding fried in dough, sprinkled with powder sugar, and served with banana gelato. It was so incredible I didn’t have time to take a picture since I was too busy devouring it and getting white powder all over my face. We also sampled amazing wines from La Crema, Far Niente, Grgich Hills Estate, Joyce Vineyards, Bridlewood, etc. I can’t even name them all.

My favorite non-food related moment was getting judged by the Bumby’s at the after party on Saturday night. I had never heard of them before but they are a male and female duo (we think) that give you “a fair and honest appraisal of your appearance.”

It was very intimidating standing in front of them and having them judge you solely on your looks! I was trying to come off friendly by smiling but not too friendly so I wouldn’t seem overly eager to be judged. Here’s my write up:

Yes, I was wearing a black dress and had my hair down so that was an accurate assessment.

I’m happy…I think.

All and all, we met a lot of cool and friendly people and I felt so happy and lucky to get to go. 

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