This is part II of an extended post about Foodbuzz Festival 2011.
I've been going to the Foodbuzz Festival since its inception in 2009. The Tasting Pavilion has always been the focus of Saturday afternoon and is a super fun part of the festival. You basically walk around this huge room at the top of the Metreon and sample all sorts of delicious food from an wide assortment of vendors.
This year, for the first time, they allowed us to bring a guest! I was so excited to finally be able to bring one of my best friends from college, who has graciously hosted me the last several years whenever I visit San Francisco.
There's no way I could describe every single thing I tried or saw in those three (!) hours of sampling. However, here are some that stood out to me.
This actually isn't part of the Tasting Pavillion (they were serving it for breakfast during the workshops). However, I liked the Clover Yogurt that I tried so much that I had to include it in this line up. Have you ever had cream on top yogurt? Oh man . . . sooo good. I'm a purist when it comes to yogurt (no fruit please), so I actually enjoyed it by just eating it plain.
TCHO chocolates are also local to California (they claim to be San Francisco's only artisanal chocolate maker). We tried several flavors (Plain, "Fruity", "Serious Milk", etc), which were all excellent.
These pears from Frog Hollow Farms were really, really good! Sweet, crispy, excellent flavor . . I can imagine that they would pair super well with cheese.
We learned so much about how Belgian endives grow. Did you know they do not exist in nature? Belgian endives come from the chicory root, and only "bloom" as these young, tender, white leaves when they are left in the dark. Otherwise, chicory root usually grows tougher, green leaves.
Fantastic artisanally flavored nuts from Oren's Kitchen - these cashews, made with an interesting Indian spice, were my favorite.
Alexia, who sponsored large portions of the conference, had cooking demonstrations for how to use their frozen products. Here they have a beautiful cheese crisp that you can fill with many types of products.
Grass fed beef tastes delicious and is better for you too! This beef was fantastic - perfectly medium rare and quite juicy.
There was quite a bit of Alaskan seafood, including cod potato cakes (yum!) and crab and avocado salad.
We tried the most delicious butter cookies made with Wineforest's candy cap sugar. It's odd to think that a dried mushroom would work so well in a cookie, but these cookies were fabulous.
I totally fell in love with the fig and cherry jam from The Girl and the Fig. I came back from several "seconds" because it tasted so good with just a cracker and some cheese.
I was curious about kefir and finally had a chance to try it. It tastes like liquid yogurt, except that (according to the vendor) this particular version has many more probiotic live and active cultures - ten different kinds, to be exact.
It was a fun, fun tasting and I definitely wanted to check out some of these products once I got home. Funny thing is, while hanging out at SFO, I stumbled upon a cute little market inside the terminal at American Airlines. Lo and behold, the store was just like the Tasting Pavilion! I saw The Girl and the Fig jam, Tyler Florence products, 479 popcorn, TCHO chocolate, and jams from Frog Hollow Farms!
I guess you don't even have to leave the airport to enjoy a bit of some of the best artisanal products that San Francisco has to offer!
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