Geoduck Cooking Demo

Eating gourmet food and drinking wine, beer, and cider were just some of the activities offered by the Seattle Food and Wine Experience on February 28, 2010. The Taste of Tulalip Culinary Exhibition Stage also offered a chance to learn a thing or two from the chefs of the Tulalip Resort Casino, including a demo on how to prepare Geoduck Fritters. Tulalip Bay Fine Dining also served up an Asian BBQ Pork Slider, my hubby’s favorite dish of the day.

Kathy Casey was nice enough to spend the entire event signing 300 copies of her book, Kathy Casey’s Northwest Table at the Columbia Winery booth and handing them out for free. The hubby pointed out that the wait wasn’t so bad because he got six different tastes of wine while the line moved along!

You could even buy wine glasses at the event. Mercer Imports was on hand sellling the Eisch Breathable Glass that promises to aerate your wine in minutes. One day we hope to give these a try and see if we can taste the difference.

A couple of the standout wines we tasted include the McCrea Cellars Grenache Blanc, a very limited production varietal in Washington State. It’s a nice crisp white wine with hints of mineral and good acid. I hear that if you like oysters, this would be a wine to serve alongside. Another favorite Washington wine being poured was the Kiona Lemberger. This Lemberger represents an old world style. Best of all, it’s been on sale around Seattle for under $10 a bottle. If  you believe that wine is often at its best when matched with the right food, check out our posts on the Food and Wine Pairing Network for the top pairings of the event.

At these big indoor events it’s always nice to get a breath of fresh air every once in a while. Do that at the Seattle Food and Wine Experience, and you discover the Maximus/Minimus mobile pig truck in the courtyard serving up Sliders with Slaw. I devoured the Maximus Veggie Slider. Only bummer is we weren’t allowed to have anything in our glass while enjoying the great outdoors.

Maximus/Minimus Truck

Let’s not forget a key reason behind the Seattle Food and Wine Experience – to raise money for Beecher’s Flagship Foundation. The Foundation offers the Pure Food Kids Workshop which is a fun, hands on program for fourth through sixth graders. It teaches them about pure foods and making healthier food choices. As a volunteer for the organization, this is a cause that is near and dear to me. Alison Leber is at the heart of the foundation, running it with incredible efficiency. This week we were in a classroom of fifth graders, each of whom played the role of “food detective” by investigating ingredient lists on packages. Through a combination of lecture and video, the kids are taught how they are marketed to, how to read nutrition facts, and the potential health risks involved with eating foods that contain artificial colors and preservatives. They also work together to prepare a vegetarian chili that is so tasty, most of the kids ask for seconds. It’s a hands on program that totally engages the kids and is making a difference right here in our own backyard.

There you have it, a big event supporting a valuable cause!