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

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Most awesome @Chef_Morimoto photo & Saturday demos at @AustinFoodWine Festival 2012

The first day time event of the Austin Food and Wine Festival started with possibly the most awesome photo ever.  I mean ever.  I must admit that I am little bit biased since I was photographed it.  Gifted with a media pass, I was able to get into the grand tasting earlier to spot Morimoto.  I started watching the Japanese Iron Chef somewhere in 1999 or 2000, and needless to say, I was a little in awe (kinda sorta, ya know). 

Morimoto is one of those magical legends of celebrity chefs, and he was doing a book signing.  As I waited for him to do his signing, the personality started to come through.  He gave me the Hook'em!  And then a double Hook'em!  See below.

If you want to know, I'll give you my six cents on how to prepare for the festival.

1. Wear comfortable shoes.  You'll be walking from where you parked to the festival, and all over the festival.  The terrain is quite sandy and dirty, so best be prepared by wearing shoes with traction.
2. Sunblock.  Sunblock.  Sunblock.  And sunblock.
3. Unless you have a VIP pass, it might be wise to wait until the last hour of the grand tasting.  During the VIP period, it was pretty tame.  However, during general admission, it could get a little squishy.  If you wait until after most of the crowd had eaten their fill, the tents started to clear out.
4. Neti-pot (with distilled or boiled water) when you get home.  It was quite dusty, and your sinus will thank you.
5. If you must wear a dress or a skirt, make sure it has some structure and substance so it doesn't get blow around.  The wind was causing some free peep shows.  
6. Arrive very early to the cooking demos.  The lines can start as far as an hour in advance. 

Here's some photos from the grand tasting.  It seems like pie is big this year, so do make sure you hit up all the pie vendors. We got to check in with our friends from Columbus Salame (San Fran, CA) pictured below along with many other Austin Favorites. 

 HEB had a really neat center piece of bamboo stalks. 

I was happy to see that Alaska Brewing was represented well.

Kitchen Aid put on a display that would make any baker wet his/her pants!

After eating a great deal of super tasty treats and drinks, I headed down to check out the Tyson Cole hands on demo.  I didn't get to participate, but I did get to take some photos. 

Chefs Tyson Cole and Paul Qui stop for a second to give us a smile. 

The hands on demo area.

Busy chefs preparing for the demonstration.

This guy made a hilarious face, and yes, he was having a great time. 

The final product from some of the attendees. 

More happy sushi students.

This woman did a great job with her display, and she seems quite pleased with herself. 

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