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BlogHerFood16 Wrap-Up

Better late than never, here’s my BlogHerFood16 Wrap-Up. All I can say is BlogHerFood16 in Austin Texas was amazing! Nah, I can say a lot more.
And I have lots of photos to share with you too.
BlogHerFood16 Wrap-up

Upon check-in I received a canvas tote bag filled with lots of foodie swag and treats from quite a few of the sponsors: Martin’s Famous Potato Rolls, Heluva Good Dip, Lentils.CA,  American Dairy Association, American Egg Board, Enjoy Life Foods, National Confectioners Association, and RX Bar*(s).

BlogHerFood16 Wrap-up

Breakfast was sponsored by Martin’s Famous Potato Rolls & Bread.

Now we’re talkin! #thetoastisgolden #BlogHerFood16

A photo posted by ? ???????? ???? Kitoula ? ? ???????????????? ???????? ? (@kitoula) on

During breakfast, Martin’s @potatorolls had a fun Instagram contest, with the hashtag #thetoastisgolden. It was a cute idea to have the instructions for the contest printed on the place mats.

BlogHerFood16 Wrap-up

Of course, I had to take a ridiculous selfie donning a Martin’s baker hat. In case anyone should accuse me of being a stuffy, serious, food blogger.   🙄

BlogHerFood16 Wrap-up

The conference was held at Austin’s downtown Hilton. The food was delicious and plentiful. There was almost TOO much food. Is that possible for a food bloggers conference?   😕

BlogHerFood16 Wrap-up

BTW the future of BlogHerFood is safe and illustrated here… because BABIES!!! 😉

*** 🙂 😉 🙂 ***

atasteofkoko

My favorite speaker and break-out session was with Jane Ko, travel & restaurant expert, and blogger @  A Taste of Koko.

In the workshop, Jane shared her secrets about photography composition, styling, and maximizing natural light. She covered 3 main topics:

  • How to take better photos using the features and apps on your mobile phone
  • How to creatively style your photos
  • How to use apps made just for mobile to edit your photos

How generous of Jane to share all her Instagram tricks and tips. I’ve been using her techniques on my Instagram account since the workshop. They work. I’ve been getting more Followers and more engagement.

BlogHerFood16 Wrap-up

Did you know that lentils grow in Canada?  Canadian Lentils, Lentils.CA, one of the conference sponsors, is a brand funded by Saskatchewan Pulse Growers. SPG is accountable to and funded by over 17,000 farmers in Saskatchewan. The organization’s mission is to nourish the world through profitable pulse production.

Pulses are a protein-packed, and earth-friendly food we know as beans, chickpeas, lentils and dry peas. So, eat lentils for your health and for social good. Lentils! Who knew?

BlogHerFood16 Wrap-up

A bag of bars were waiting in my hotel room Friday afternoon. RX Bar*s have no gluten, no soy, no dairy, and no added sugar. Their main ingredients are dates, egg whites, almonds and cashews. I like the chocolate ones the best.

BlogHerFood16 Wrap-up

Sometime you need a break from even the best of food blogger conferences. By the pool with Bloody Mary; need I say more?

BlogHerFood16 Wrap-up

Across the street from the Hilton is the Moonshine Patio Bar & Grill. Moonshine’s craft cocktail, “The Waterloo,” made with Waterloo gin, cucumbers, and grapefruit juice was very enjoyable, but their hot pretzel sticks, with whipped pimento dip… OMG! (Who had 2 orders? 😛 )

BlogHerFood16 Wrap-up

Did I mention Yianni came along on the trip? It was our first time in Austin.

Here he is at The Driskill, an historic hotel more than 100 years old. It was built in 1886 as the showplace of cattle baron Jesse Driskill. Fun fact: Former President Lyndon B. Johnson awaited news of his successful 1964 election as President of the United States from the mezzanine-level Jim Hogg room.

Heart Lanergan DriveGood times! Thank you BlogHerFood16! Heart Lanergan Drive

Iron Works BBQ Austin TX

I attended BlogHerFood16 last weekend. It was a very informative conference, and I’ll post about all I learned next.  But first, here’s my restaurant review of Iron Works BBQ, Austin TX.

I definitely wanted to taste Texas BBQ when I got to Austin. And just a few blocks from the Hilton hotel stands Iron Works BBQ, offering “Official Texas BBQ.”

Iron Works BBQ Austin TX

The history of Iron Works BBQ can be found here. It’s the story of a German ironworker looking for a better life for his family in America.

Iron Works BBQ Austin TX

When you walk into Iron Works BBQ, you are immediately struck by its charm, not to mention all of the yummy items on their chalkboard menu.

Iron Works BBQ Austin TX

Choosing your beverage includes plunging your arm into an ice bath. It’s worth the chill. They have two coolers with a very nice assortment of beer and soda.

Iron Works BBQ Austin TX

I opted for the BBQ beef brisket plate with a side of cole slaw and creamed corn.

Iron Works BBQ Austin TX

Yianni chose a slab of BBQ pork ribs and potato salad. We were not disappointed! Iron Works BBQ is absolutely delicious. And it’s no wonder Jay Leno, and Leonardo DiCaprio are a couple of its biggest fans. When you visit Austin, put it on your “must-have” BBQ list.

I’m BlogHerFood Bound

The annual BlogHerFood conference is taking place in Austin this Friday and Saturday and I cannot wait to attend. That’s right. I’m going!
BlogHerFood

I’ve never been to Austin and I have already hit social media for recommendations on the best places to eat while I’m there. Here’s the list so far:
1. Easy Tiger Bakeshop and beer garden
2. Enotica Vespaio Bistro
3. Hop Doddy Burgers
4. Chuy’s Tex Mex
5. P. Terry’s more Burgers
6. Parkside  Gastropub
7. Ironworks BBQ
8. La Condesa Mexican

The closing key note speaker will be restaurateur, cookbook author, and “The Chew” co-host, Carla Hall.

Carla Hall BlogHerFood

She’s also a very snazzy dresser. Check out that unique style on her site.

I’m ready. I’ve downloaded the BlogHerFood mobile app, and scheduled all my breakout sessions. Follow my live tweets @Kitoula with the hashtag #BlogHer2016.

Austin, here I come.

All the Greek Festivals!

If you like Greek food and you’d like to take your family for a bit of fun, Greek Festivals are just the ticket. Here I have listed some, but not all the Greek festivals that I know and love.

Early in the summer in Bloomfield Hills Michigan, St. George’s had its Ya’ssoo Greek Festival!

St George Yassoo Fest, All the Greek Festivals
Photo by George Dzahristos

St. Nick’s Opa! Fest in Troy is the largest on-going Greek festival in the metro Detroit area. This is one of my favorites. My friend, blogger, cookbook author, and Chef, Peter Minaki of Kalofagas has given cooking demonstrations at this festival for the last few years.

St .Nicks Opa Fest, All the Greek Festivals
Photo by HOUR Detroit

This weekend, Holy Trinity in Grand Rapids Michigan hosts Yassou! Greek Cultural Festival. I wrote about this festival, and my Greek cousins, in 2011.

Souvlakia, All the Greek Festivals
Photo by Kitoula

Their motto is Eat! Dance! Be Greek!

Yassou! Fest, All the Greek Festivals
Photo by Kitoula

And because Greece is one of the oldest wine producing regions in the world, you might add, Drink!

Opa Kitoula! All the Greek Festivals

Yamas!