First off, my apologies for not posting so regularly the past few days! As I mentioned before, I was in San Francisco this past weekend attending the first ever Foodbuzz Festival. What an incredible weekend. I was able to meet so many bloggers in person after having admired their blogs. It was also great meeting so many new bloggers.
We spent the entire weekend eating, eating, and more eating!. It was a blast! We sampled food from a variety of sources: everything from small, local, artisanal vendors to large corporations with a focus on natural, sustainable foods.
And oh my . . there are some really cool vendors out there selling some really cool stuff. I will need to spend several days sharing with you the highlights of this trip . . . so much to talk about!
For this post today, I’ll share with you our adventures on Friday night – the kickoff of the Foodbuzz Festival.
The Ferry Building in SF is a large building right next to the water filled with a wonderful array of bakeries, coffee shops, local meat vendors, and other interesting local eats. On our first night, we enjoyed a mock up of a night out on the streets of San Francisco where we sampled some amazing street foods from the San Francisco area.
As an East coaster, I have always thought that the west coast had better Mexican food. My opinion still holds true after this visit to the west coast. I sampled the potato chorizo taco, which had a wonderful mix of flavors over a traditional corn tortilla. Delicious.
Mission Minis is a local San Francisco cupcake bakery whose cupcakes are sold at a variety of shops and restaurants around San Francisco. These cupcakes were so cute, and definitely caught our eye as we entered the Ferry building. I tried the Ruby Red Velvet and thought it was tasty, but not particularly special.
The Pie Truck makes these mini-pies filled with various flavors such as zucchini-mushroom and steak & Gruyere. I found the pies to be a bit oily (they are buttery pastries!) but then I tend to like lighter foods, so I might be a bit biased. Everyone else around thought the pies were absolutely delicious. They do use fresh, local organic ingredients.
I thought it was pretty good, though nothing particularly special. In general, I’m more of a fan of deeper, sweet and malty beers, such as artisanal Belgian beers or microbrews. To give you an idea of my taste, some of my favorite beers include Chimay, Duval, Sam Adams Boston Lager (on tap), Leff, Harp, and Sapporo. This beer was a bit light, but had relatively nice flavors.
Spencer on the Go is a French Bistro on a cart, essentially. For this event, they had an organic beet salad with blue cheese and a wild mushroom truffle tart. I was getting full at this point, and unfortunately did not try the mushroom tart even though I typically LOVE anything truffle. I love fresh beets, and this multi-colored beet salad was fresh and delicious. It tasted like it came from the farm that morning.
Alive, a San Francisco based catering company, specialized in vegan raw food, which is quite a challenge. As you may know, vegan foods do not contain any animal products. Strict vegans will even avoid foods that involve animals, such as honey. The raw food movement is based on the idea that heat destroys essential vitamins and antioxidants. Accordingly, raw foods cannot be heated above 118 degrees Fahrenheit.
We sample a vegan raw “cheesecake” (made from cashews and cococnut oil) and a few crostinis. The cheesecake wasn’t bad (although it did not taste like cheesecake), but I did not particularly care for it that much because it had a less-than-subtle hint of coconut. When you're expecting cheesecake and you taste coconut, it's just a bit surprising. Maybe a better name for the dessert would have been Passion Fruit Coconut Cream Cake, or something like that.
I thought the crostinis were delicious. The cracker had a hefty crunch and tasted very wholesome (which I love). The toppings were just fresh veggies marinated in various dressings. Delicious, and definitely something I would not be able to stop eating if I encountered it at a party.
I was actually really full by the time I got to this stand, but the crust looked so thin and the toppings looked so good (my favorite, Marguerite), that I just had to try a slice. Oh man, I’m so glad I did! This pizza has a super thin crust that was still crispy when I bit into it. Yum yum yum . . so good.
The sauce is made from San Marzano tomatoes, which, according to the vendor, are imported from Italy and have a deeper, richer flavor than any tomato grown in the US. This is due to the volcanic soil in Italy that filters the water, thus allowing the tomatoes to become sweeter and less acidic. I would have totally eaten a whole pizza if I had room – really delicious.
I am spoiled in that I live in Boston where we have access to some of the best oysters around. These small oysters from the SF bay were fresh and delicious, with a mild salty flavor from the sea. I still prefer Prince Edward Island oysters as my favorite in terms of flavor, but these were pretty good.
I had tons of fun sampling food with Cindy from Chubby Chinese Girl and Linda from One Scoop At Time the entire night. Linda has a funny picture of me photographing the Porchetta sandwich here. Check out their blogs for their takes on the Foodbuzz Festival!
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