Craft Beer, Fine Wine, Artisan Spirits, and Mouthgasmic Food.

Monday, May 5, 2014

2014 @AustinFoodWine Festival Overview

I've given this post some thought over the last week, and I'm still dealing with mixed feelings.  While I was out having fun at one of Austin's premiere festivals, many other people in Austin were grieving the loss of Kelly Wayne Noel who was killed by a drunk driver.  I've never met Kelly in person, but I consistently got retweet notifications from him with every post I submitted.  That retweet will serve as a painful reminder that life is too short as it is - don't be reckless and take one too soon.  Austin Bloggy wrote a beautiful tribute to Kelly.  Rest In Please.   Please enjoy whatever you do responsibly. 

Back to business, let's chat about the the Austin Food and Wine Festival. 2014's layout and offerings was very similar to 2013, with refinements to several of the events.  Vendors seemed to have kicked up their game a bit with Kim Crawford's Springy pink Ping Pong table and Jack Gilmore's fire truck.  Here's some scenes from the day time events. 

This beautiful watermelon was on display in the grand tasting.

And the beautiful Sandi Reinlie from Vespaio.  She brought with her some lovely panna cotta with her. 

And to my great delight, Jeni's Ice Cream is here in a GREAT way.  This is the Not Enough - salted caramel ice cream, pecans, and bittersweet chocolate.  The bittersweet chocolate was perfect - just a hair sweet and rich with favor.  You can find these ice creams at Royal Blue Grocery, or you can make the ice creams following her book.  I have experimented with the latter. 

Liquid nitrogen is always a party.  It is never a party unless there's liquid nitrogen!

And one of Austin's cutest couples, Philly, Uchi/Uchiko, and Callie Speer, Swift's Attic.  They are some of the top

Here's a tasty brisket bite from Kent Rathburn's Jasper.  It was served on an Asian style steamed bun with tangy, crunchy veggies.  Kent and his crew were sweet as you could be in Texas.  I'm glad to see him again. 

And in the Chef Showcase, Lawrence Kocurek presented a lovely croque-monsieur.  If you've had this tasty morsel, you'll know why I'm a strong advocate of Chef Kocurek's charcuterie.  You can visit him at Trace at the W Hotel. 

And prior to the festival this year, Cupcake Vineyards hosted an event with Chefs Monica Pope, Jason Dady, and Stephanie Izard.  Here's Monica Pope and crew. 

And here's Jason Dady's banh mi sandwiches. 

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