Wine, Dine, Good Time Food and Wine Conference recap #FWCON

Have you ever been to a Food and Wine Conference? If not, let me show you around The 2014 Food and Wine Conference held in Orlando, Florida July 18th through the 20th at the gorgeous Rosen Shingle Creek!
rosen patio
Friday night started off with Spud Soiree sponsored by Idaho Potato Commission.

Big Red

potatocam interview

truffle chips
Jammer and the Florida Strawberry Growers Association were there to greet everyone!

Then it was time for the Blogger Blend.

I was honored to be chosen as an Ambassador covering Gallo Family Vineyards! Gallo held us all in suspense as to which wine was going to be unveiled at the Blogger Blend Wine and Cheese Pairing event on Friday night. The buzz outside the doors was amazing!
blogger blend welcome

Let me introduce you to the newest member of the Gallo Family, Gallo Riesling!

Gallo Riesling

blogger blend riesling bottles

Gallo describes their new Riesling as having “Whispers of honeysuckle, juicy peach, pear and ripe citrus. Whether you are serving barbecue from the grill for family and friends, or savory pasta for two, this incredibly versatile wine will pair beautifully. It’s the perfect complement to your summer dinners, and goes very well with a night on the patio watching the sun set!”

I found Gallo Riesling to be crisp and clean, not too sweet and so refreshing! Definitely delicious new favorite of mine!

blogger blend pour

Find Gallo Riesling  near you and Follow Gallo on Twitter or Like Gallo on Facebook for more delicious Riesling paring suggestions!

Gallo made us feel like movie stars with such an elegant presentation, absolutely stunning!
bloggers blend me
After that wonderful reception we were in for a treat at Taste of Rosen Shingle Creek in their Butler Room.
We enjoyed small plates from cooking stations featuring incredible selections of dining options from Rosen Shingle Creek.  A Land Remembered – Steakhouse, Cala Bella – Italian Restaurant, Mi Casa Tequila Taqueria – Mexican Restaurant, Banrai – Sushi, Tobias Flats Watering Hole – Unique Flatbreads, Cafe Osceola –  American and Spanish Cuisine, 18 Monroe Street – Market Deli.

We even got to taste Foodie Stuntman’s winning recipe Filet Mignon with Red Wine Reduction served over Polenta!

Saturday brought a jam packed day of learning, food, fun and friendship!

I got to attend workshops with Keynote Speakers Emily Ellyn, Food Network Star contender and Whitney Miller, winner of Master Chef competition.
Ellen and Whitney
We learned about social media strategy from Dennis Littley, Kim Vij, Amanda Boyarshinov, Lora Amato and Brianne Izzo.

SEO gurus Dan Cristo and Nicole Cook also gave us great tips!

Then it was time for our Mimosa and Bloody Mary break hosted by Duda Farms !

mimosa break

Then a great Blog to Business session with Erika Kerekes from Not Ketchup and Michele Northrup, the Saucy Queen herself! These ladies are so funny!

Lunch found me outside hanging with Fields Auto Group listening to Music by Brandon Palmer.

mini and me

After lunch we attended sessions about blogs as brands with Coryanne Ettiene and Jackie Gordon and navigating WordPress advice from Judi Knight and Renee Dobbs with more WordPress tips from them on Sunday!

Afternoon Break was sponsored by Cabot Creamery Cooperative andParksdale Farm Market!

cabot parksdale break

More amazing sessions with Monica Bhide, Jamie Schler, Janet Keeler, Maggie Battista, Merry-Jennifer Markam and Lael Hazan!

Time for fun with The Family Feudie Game Show! None of us could stop laughing. The answers were as funny as the questions!

family fuedie

Dinner brought a special closeness to our group. We got to sit and dine family style!
#fwcon family dinner

sat dinner menu


We had a different wine paired for each course! My favorite was the field greens salad paired with Gallo Sauvignon Blanc !

serving salad

Jenny Hemmer, CSW, CSS,  Gallo Family Vineyard’s Certified Sommelier, answered wine pairing questions. Gallo’s Digital Marketing Strategist Alexis Nascimento helped present awards, beautiful Gallo cutting boards!

Jenny and Alexis

We love working with our sponsors and wanted to show our appreciation! The 2014 Bloggers Choice Award was given to Gallo Family Vineyards! Thank you Gallo for your support!

Bloggers Choice Award

We had wonderful sponsors! Here is the winners list. I was honored and humbled to have placed in two of the contests!

Idaho® Potato Recipe Contest:

Dixie Crystals Brownie Dessert Contest:

Davidson’s Safest Choice No-Bake Summer Recipe Contest:

Rosen Shingle Creek Recipe Contest:

Music was provided by guitarist Braden Palmer.

Sunday we all headed over to the Rosen College of Hospitality  demonstrations, workshops and of course lunch!

I got to participate in the behind-the-scenes action, which was so exciting!

The demo with Chef Giuliano Hazan was sponsored by Davidson’s Safest Choice Eggs.

chef hazan

Veronica Chan demonstrated the latest tools from by OXO to make a delicious fruit salad.

fwcon oxo

Bess AuerLeslie GreenKrayl Funch, and Stephanie Manley showed us how to make successful videos then we were treated to a Morning Break Sponsored by Wish Farms and Stonyfield .

wish farms break

stonyfield break

 The Beef Checkoff sponsored demos on Cutting, Creating and Capturing Delicious Beef Dishes!
Bridget Wasser, Meat Science Technology shows us how to cut a full loin into steaks and roasts.

beef demo
Executive Chef Dave Zino prepared kabobs and a kicker steak sauce for our lunch.

chef dave
Renee Dobbs showed us terrific tips for photographing tough subjects like meat and how to become better food photographers in general.
Time for lunch sponsored by The Beef Checkoff and Idaho Potato.

More session and cooking demos after lunch with Marisa McClellan on promoting your cookbook, media kit advice with Wendy Wofford Garcia and Monica Bhide, and creating the perfect picture story with Janet and Scott Keeler.

 Let’s Get Grilling with STOK!  STŌK Grills showed us how their grills allow you to cook an entire meal on the grill.

stok 2stok 1

Whitney Miller showed us “How to Give The Perfect Food Demo”.

Whitney cooking demo
I enjoyed some afternoon networking before heading back on Monday.

fwcon networking

flight home
I’d love to see you at next year’s conference! Bookmark Conference for upcoming details!

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13 Responses to Wine, Dine, Good Time Food and Wine Conference recap #FWCON

  1. A great recap of the weekend! I’m so delighted to have met you in person and thanks for the mention!
    DB-The Foodie Stuntman @ Crazy Foodie Stunts recently posted..Review of the 2014 Food & Wine Conference #FWConMy Profile

  2. Liz says:

    Great review, Cindy! This was SO much fun! I spent too much time gabbing and not enough time taking pictures :)
    Liz recently posted..Pizza Margherita #WeekdaySupper #ChooseDreamsMy Profile

  3. Jenni says:

    An excellent recap! Your cheesy breakfast potato patties sound delicious–cheese + potatoes = I’m all over it! And as I’ve said before, I’ll always love a girl who fills her wine glass to the very top! xoxo
    Jenni recently posted..Caramelized Onion, Zephyr Squash and Jazz Apples for #loveNZfruitMy Profile

  4. Renee says:

    Such a great conference and a wonderful recap Cindy!
    Renee recently posted..Pasta with Spinach and Green Pea SauceMy Profile

  5. Such a fun recap! It was great to meet you and share a real #SundaySupper with you!
    Courtney @ Neighborfood recently posted..Tabbouleh SaladMy Profile

  6. Good roundup Cindy–loads of nice pictures. It was great to revisit #FWCon2014 through your post.

    Alaiyo Kiasi-Barnes recently posted..Food & Wine Conference BasicsMy Profile

  7. Great recap of a wonderful conference! So nice to finally meet you in person!
    Dorothy at Shockingly Delicious recently posted..Hatch Chile Roastings 2014 in Southern California — Hotsy Totsy Edition!My Profile

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