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SXSW Food Blogger Bash Recap & Gift Bag Giveaway

After four days of running between panels, keynote speakers and core conversations during the South by Southwest Interactive (SXSWi) Conference, I was exhausted and needed refuge from the madness of the Austin Convention Center. Thankfully, I’d received an invite to the Austin360.com SXSW Food & Wine Blogger Bash, sponsored by Whole Foods Market and Go Texan and hosted at our flagship store’s wonderful Lamar Culinary Center. Little known fact – I started with Whole Foods Market as catering staff for the Lamar Culinary Center, so I know the place well and was very pleased with how the cooking school space was transformed to house not only a foodie meet & greet, but also wine tastings from the GO TEXAN wine program and demonstrations from two of the best chefs in town – Tyson Cole from Uchi and Jesse Griffiths from Dai Due Supper Club. Some highlights of the night:
  • During his demonstration of a fabulous herb stuffed flounder, Jesse explained that flounder start off like most fish with eyes on either side of their heads and over their lifetimes, one eye migrates over to sit adjacent to the unmoved one!
  • Tyson Cole demonstrated how to prepare rice balls (or in his words “primitive sushi”), though there was absolutely nothing primitive about the amazingly delicious dish he created.
  • GO TEXAN sponsored a blind wine tasting comparing four Texas wines (all under $20) with their price comparable counterparts from around the world. The surprise of the night? The Texas wines were all unique, tasty and reasonably priced!
In addition to the food and wine provided by Jesse, Tyson and GO TEXAN, the Lamar Culinary Center also provided a beautiful spread of locally inspired appetizers including my personal favorite - tomato tatins ("Sliced Texas hot house tomatoes atop country-style bread spread with fresh Texas basil pesto and drizzled with olive oil.") and a fine selection of Texas beers and wines. The company was delightful, the weather was spring perfection and I was very happy to meet Jodi of Tasty Touring, Rachel and Nichelle of Cupcakes Take the Cake, Teddy from Fun With Your Food, Addie of Relish Austin and many other awesome bloggers! All of our guests left with an amazing Better Bag filled with goodies including 365 Everyday Value Pita Chips, Sweet Leaf tea, Alaffia shea & coffee body lotion, an Austin360 tee-shirt, a GO TEXAN wine carrier and more! We gave away one bag to a lucky Twitterer at SXSWi who posted a picture of what they had for dinner and now, we’d like to give you, our wonderful blog audience, a chance to win one too! Simply post a comment on this entry between now and Friday March 27th and we will select one at random to receive the coolest schwag bag ever. Read on to see what some of the food blogger attendees had to say: This is Life in Austin Eat'n Veg'n Austin Gastronome Cookery Content Relish Austin Tasty Touring Keep Austin Tasty Eat! Craft! Live! Cooking Inside the Lines Lisa is Cooking Apron Adventures Maggie's Austin Poco-Cocoa Sifting Through Austin Fun With Your Food Austin360 video

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300 comments

Comments

Katherine says …

The food sounded delicious!!!!!!!!!!! Interesting about how the one migrates on the fish too!!!!! Never knew that! Wish I could have been there to experience all of that fun!

Myra Siegel says …

It sounds like this was a wonderful event!!! I sure do wish I could have gone to it.

Ash says …

WOW I wish I could have been there to see the demonstrations. Tyson Cole is my favorite chef in Austin. I am still upset he didn't win the Iron Chef competition- the judging was unfair (he rocked it)! Pick me for the Better Bag!

Kristi says …

Sounds like a blast and I'm sorry I missed it and the rest of SXSW! But we're moving home to Austin in a couple of months, so we'll definitely be attending SXSW next year!

Michelle says …

Wow! Looks like a blast! If only...

Joseph Hayes says …

How about someone starting a SxSE and bringing some life to Orlando?

Jeanne says …

I wish I could have scored an invite to Austin. Looks like it was fun and informative!

Martin R says …

know what i'm sayin'?

MelodyJ says …

It seems like everyone had a wonderful time. I also wish I could have been there.

Lynna says …

Bring this event to NJ!

JoJo says …

I've wanted to go to SXSW for years, and every article I read about it makes it sound better than the last. Maybe one year!

susan holaday says …

Thanks for letting me know that there are wineries in Texas!

Rhonda says …

Thin Mint Cupcakes! What a great idea for using up all the Girl Scout cookies I purchased. The cookie looks yummy perched up there in the green frosting. Thanks for the idea!

Susan says …

Sounds like a great time and fabulous food and drink. What is the likelihood of getting the riceball recipe? Just had Arancini de Riso this weekend and would love to compare the two.

Karyn says …

Wish I didn't miss that one, it would have been fun to attend. Maybe next year it will be announced on the WF web?

Deanna says …

Yummy, those foodie pics look fabulous! Can you give up the names of the GO Texas under $20 wines? Pretty please?

L Weber says …

Wish I was there! Looks like it was warm and festive...

Jillian Schrier says …

Sounds like a mighty tasty night, i wish i could have sampled that fare. Hope to win!

Marguerite R. says …

The well written article makes you feel like you are there! It makes you want to be there among all the talent and wonderful food and drink! Well done.

Lauren says …

Oh, the delights of good, wholesome food! The tomato tatins sound amazing. Glad you enjoyed yourself at the event. And thanks for that fact about flounder and their eyes- learn something new everyday!

Ellen Ronnie says …

What a fantastic event! Just the kind of event I'd love to be part of. Thanks for giving us a chance to win the gift bag.

Lisa Lessard says …

Tasty article full of interesting ideas.

Merrie Haynes-Hanson says …

Great music and fantastical food. What could be better? Oh yeah, me getting to experience both from Colorado. Sigh.

Janet says …

I would love a list of the $20 Texas wines : ) It is refreshing to see foodies can find wholesome foods in Texas vs the steroetypical beef brisket barbeque's!( Don't get me wrong here... I am not trying to be politically incorrect) Thanks for the overview of some other Texas options!

TSue says …

Sorry I missed this. Now that I subscribed to the Whole Foods e-newsletter, I'll know about it ahead of time.

Cindy says …

I looove Austin! Someday I hope to be there for SXSW. I try to make a pilgrimage to WF original store. Love my local store - the displays in the produce section are like works of art.

Rachel says …

I'd appreciate a link to the recipe for the rice balls too. Thanks!

patricia boutilier says …

What could possibly be better than music and great food-----a chance to win something!

Denise says …

Great Photos of the entire event! Hope I win because it is Spring!!

Amanda Caruso says …

Sounds like it was a great event. We need to something similar in Kansas City!

Natalie says …

What a great event. I want to do that in Tennessee. I love WholeFoods!!

says …

Here are the GO TEXAN wines we sampled: - McPherson Viognier 2007 - Llano Signature Melange - McPherson Sangiovese 2006 - Texas Hills Orange Moscato 2005 My personal favorite was the Sangiovese. These are available at many Whole Foods Market locations around the country. Check with your local store for their selection.

Barbara Jacksier says …

The bash sounds fabulous Will you be doing bashes in other regions?

Holly says …

Looks great! I wish I could have been there!

laura l says …

the pictures are making me very hungary. i will try making the rice balls.

Charlene says …

I'm still crackin myself up! I love the comment by Tyson describing the rice balls as "primitve sushi"! What a hoot! Also, I did not know the story on flounder having eyes on both sides of the head to start with. Thanks!

Janice Schwarz says …

Reading this makes me homesick for Austin. I miss the food and fun of that city. SXSW is another of those great Austin events that is so uniquely Austin. And mmmmmm Texas wines. That will have to wait due to pregnancy, but its now added to my list of things to enjoy after! Now to settle on a brand...

Donna Harmon says …

The food and wine blogger bash looks like so much fun! I hope there are plans for other locations, like Dallas.

Amanda Black says …

This sounds so cool! I think I need to add Austin to my travel plans. And next year, I really need to go to SXSW. For now, I think I'll just make a trip to Whole Foods. Cheers, Amanda

Brittany says …

What a great giveaway! Looks like an amazing, food-filled, time!

Mimi Maxwell says …

This looks like a great time! I'm proud to be a team member at a WFM in Massachusetts. I love that we do community based events like this!

Ann says …

My tummy says yummy! Looks/reads like lots of fun and entertainment.

Marsha Jones says …

The herb stuffed flounder sounds awesome!

Courtenay says …

This looks like it was a lot of fun. I would love to win the goody bag. Anything from Whole Foods is tops with me!

Blythe says …

I wanted to go so bad this year but timing wasn't in our favor...can't wait to attend next year and check out the mecca of Whole Foods stores! Would love to share this giveaway with my friends and family!!

Barbra Mutchler says …

This sounds wonderful! I'm already hungry :-)

Chris Lange says …

wish i was there

Payal Shah says …

I would really like to join next yr. Food looks so tempting. really love to shop at WF...

Heather says …

I've been reading about this event on two blogs. It sounds like it was a blast.

janita says …

I love blogs (esp food related), love whole foods so it sounds like a great combo! Pick me please :)

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