What happens when you get together 150+ food bloggers…
Lots of food, lots of social media, and lots of people taking pictures of their food.
I recently attended the Food and Wine Conference at Rosen Shingle Creek in Orlando. The weekend was rainy, but luckily all our events were located inside the hotel, so we didn’t have to go outside in the hot, humid, weather. I was a little sad we didn’t get to spend anytime by the pool.
Registration started at 4PM, and one of the event sponsors, Dixie Crystals, had a sugar scrub workshop. I made two of the three scrubs available, lemon rosemary and orange dreamsicle. I’m not sure which one is my favorite. I’m going back and further, and my hands smell so good. You can find the recipes for these two scrubs and more on Dixie Crystals website. The sugar scrubs would be perfect for a girls craft night. They even have printable labels on their website.
From there, we dropped off our massive bags of swag, and headed to the welcome reception sponsored by Florida Strawberries and St. Augustine Distillery. We sipped strawberry martinis while watching Chef David make chocolate. I tried a rum piece of chocolate that was incredible. I may have tried three and carried a few back to the room.
The next day started early with breakfast at the hotel followed by a full day of learning. Our sessions for the day included everything from how to file taxes to being a full time travel blogger. I made sure to pay close attention to the travel bloggers, but they said the same thing all the other panels said, produce good content and opportunities may come. That was my lesson from the day. There is no special formula to being a successful food blogger. It just takes a lot of hard work and being consistent. The part I have the most trouble with.
Lunch was a Poutine Bar sponsored by Idaho Potatoes and Wisconsin Cheese. At this point, I needed veggies and went with the sauteed kale and mushroom poutine. It was good! I also tried a poutine topped with short ribs and cheese curds. I needed a nap after lunch, that for sure. I snagged a great pieces of lemon pie on the way back to our sessions. It was perfect and light after such a heavy lunch.
After more sessions, we ended the sessions with a game of The Price is Right. I won a years supply of salad dressing from Out of the Weeds, and Dianna won the grand prize which included about 8 gift baskets and a printer that prints edible paper. Luckily, we drove to the conference because flying back with all that stuff would have been hell! I also won a customized spice rack. We literally won everything!
From there, we changed and headed back down for another meal! Saturday nights dinner was sponsored by Certified Angus Beef and was served family style for everyone to enjoy. Premier Beverage provided wines that were paired with each coarse. I know nothing about wine, but really enjoyed the Hess wines and thought they were each paired well with each dish.
Sunday started with an early morning brunch, followed by a lesson on beef from the Certified Angus Beef. From there we broke into mini sessions. I attended a class on food photography and writing with your senses. Dianna and I decided to leave before the last session was over since we had to pack up all our winnings and drive home. I’m so glad we did. Eating, drinking, and socializing all weekend is a lot of work!
One of my favorite parts of the weekend was meeting and getting to know different food bloggers. I came home with a wealth of knowledge, a car full of swag, a couple new blogging friends, and maybe a pound or two extra on my hips.
Thank you to Rosen Shingle Creek, the Food and Wine Conference, and all the great sponsors for a unforgettable weekend.