Showing posts from August, 2012

Stories Beat Stuff 3 US - Another Chance for a Trip to New Zealand!

I’m still working closely with Tourism New Zealand in their quest to get readers to experience one of their exciting adventures – for free! The options continue to get more and more exciting and this campaign  offers two trips I’d love to go on. Option No. 1 is called Culture Kaboom and it gives you the chance to explore both the culture and the landscape of New Zealand. You’ll start by landing in a city built over 50 volcanoes and then you will head east to actually see steaming geysers, boiling mud pools and a hot water beach. This area also happens to be the center of Maori culture so you can experience real New Zealand hospitality while you hang out with locals visiting a marae and digging a hangi. To get a glimpse of this breathtaking land, check out this video . Option No. 2 is City Splendour and that’s just what it is. You will have a chance to explore New Zealand’s largest cities – Christchurch, Wellington and Auckland. The itinerary includes everything from eatin

Partying Away at Aspen Food and Wine Classic

Food and wine festivals are always busy days, but I took on quite a bit for Saturday at the Aspen Food & Wine Classic . I had five parties to get to and I was determined to see, taste and listen to as much as possible. We started the day at the Whole Foods Fishmonger Face-Off, which certainly wins the prize as the most unusual event at the Aspen Food and Wine Classic. There were 11 fishmongers from Whole Foods Market stories around the country competing to cut their fish quickly and accurately, as well as answer trivia questions by Chef John Besh that helped educate the audience on making responsible choices on seafood. As you can imagine, there wasn’t much to eat for someone with a fish allergy, but I had Lisa to do the tasting (she raved about everything, especially the Rockfish Pontchartran with Chanterelle and Blue Crab) and I knew there would be plenty of things to save my appetite for and nibbled on some scrumptious mushroom tarts. Aspen Peak Magazine def

Tastes of Aspen Food & Wine Classic

I walked around Aspen for a while enjoying the warm day deciding what to do with the two hours I had free. Since I’ve been to a few of these food and wine festivals I know that it’s pretty impossible to do the Grand Market all at once. There’s just more food and drink than any person can consume. I decided to make more than one trip and headed downtown for my first. The Food & Wine Classic market wasn’t nearly as big as South Beach, but there was certainly plenty to try. I stopped at the British Airways table to find out more about how the chefs prepare food that works well with the plane’s altitude. I can’t say I fully understood the process, but it seemed to come together on my recent trip to London on that airline. Can you think of a better combination than Godiva Chocolate and ice cream? Godiva Chef David Funarc took it one step further by giving his Godiva Ice Cream Parlor Truffles flavors like Banana Split, Pecan Caramel Sundae and Rocky Road. The Wines

Intro to Aspen Food & Wine Classic

I’ve been attending the Food Network South Beach Food &Wine Festival and the Atlantic City Food & Wine Festival for years, so when the opportunity came up to cover the Aspen Food & Wine Classic , I was excited. I had heard nothing but good things about this event and was ready for my first trip to Aspen. It wasn’t easy getting to Aspen. I had to take three flights just to get to Vail, where I was meeting my friend Lisa. She had decided to drive up and the timing worked out perfectly to pick me up at the airport and make the scenic one and a half hour trip to our bed & breakfast in Aspen. We didn’t arrive until about 9:00 pm and had to change quickly to get to two of the first night’s parties. The first was downtown on the rooftop of the Dancing Bear . We saw Rick Bayless, but most of the other guests had already departed by the time we arrived, so we just stayed a short while before getting back in the car and heading up the mountain. The Jose Andr

Taking in More Views and Tastes of Chicago

One of my Chicago bucket list items for the longest time was to have dinner up on The Terrace at Trump and watch the fireworks over Navy Pier. It didn’t go exactly as planned, but it did turn out even better than I expected. I was with Cocktails and Joints publisher Dale Winespeare for some meetings (and eating) in Chicago. We were staying at The Trump and had plans for dinner at The Terrace. Unfortunately, it was a windy night and it was closed off, but we ended up with a tour that finished in front of a perfect window table., which still provided a perfect view. We didn’t have to make any decisions as Executive Chef Michael Fiddler was ready with a sampling of the menu he created for the summer season. We started with some cocktails from the creative menu, I with a delicious Exotic Ginger (Belvedere, St. Germain, Cointreau, muddled ginger, white cranberry juice and lime) and Dale with a Berry Genever (Bols Genever, lilac, lemon and muddled blackberry) he really enjo