Apr 252010

IACP 2010 Conf Web Banner Large

I’m happy and tired, just back from attending this conference. I’ve been going to International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP) conferences for around 10 years. Every year I know more people, and much hugging and kissing and laughter ensues.

There are the  people I only seem to see at this event. There are the people I want to get to know better, including book editors, magazine editors, and  authors. There are the new friends I’m thrilled to see again. There’s the Bay Area contingency, always large. And for the first time, there are the people I’ve got to know here on the blog and on social media. Put them all together and it’s an ever-expanding party, with tons of networking. And I get to learn more about our profession of food writing, in sessions ranging from book proposals to magazine pitching to new media.

bacon_maple_barAnd eating? Did I mention eating? This year’s conference was held in a total foodie town filled with food carts and artisan foods, an almost religious preoccupation with the new, the trendy, and the sustainable. Particularly, I can’t stop thinking about the sustainable pastrami sandwich at Kenny & Zuke’s, an ice-cold foie gras pop at a reception, and a maple bacon bar from Voodoo Donuts, shared in a Prius on a rainy early evening.

My job was to conduct two “Experts are In” sessions on “Staying Ahead of the Curve” and two “Night Owl” sessions for food writers on the topic of reinvention. I love coaching and facilitating discussions, so I hope the attendees got as much out of the sessions as I did.

I’m missing the buzz and the energy from being around so many talented people. Some of the highlights:

If you’re a food writer or blogger, plan to join us in Austin next year, June 1-4.

Were you there? Drop me a line and tell me what you enjoyed best.

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  20 Responses to “Friends, Food and Fun: What's Not to Love?”

  1. Boy does that look interesting! Like a giant Beard Awards Journalists dinner, only better.
    Last year’s trailer tells the story too…
    Thanks for sharing Dianne

    • Hey Carol, maybe next year you can leave Paris for Austin in the summer. Doesn’t that sound awesome?

  2. Yep, you got that right . . . like a giant James Beard dinner, only MUCH better!

  3. It was so wonderful seeing you, it was so insanely crazy that I wish I spent more time with you! I’m sure I’ll see you soon, my head is still spinning from the week!

  4. what an amazing conference! i attended your first night owl session and have lots to think about from that conversation. thanks for your insights and graceful moderation, dianne. wish i’d had a chance to attend your other seminars. the meat revival workshop may have changed my life…spent both flights home scheming on how to schedule butchering workshops at my cooking school without a walk-in.
    portland was def the best conference i’ve attended. austin–the bar is high, in more senses than one!

    • Hi Cherie, nice to hear from you. I thought your idea for a Trader Joe’s cookbook was brilliant.

      I heard the meat revival workshop was awesome –good luck with that.

      Maybe we’ll meet again next year in Austin, and I’ll hear about your latest reinvention.

      • On TJ’s cookbook. Been there (w/ insiders), and it’s not going to happen. There are, of course, already 2 TJ’s cookbooks out there in the market (unauthorized, that is).

        • Her book is already published, Nani, if that’s what you’re referring to.

          BTW, authors don’t need authorization to write about a person or company. Look at the new biography of Oprah Winfrey by Kitty Kelley — she didn’t get Oprah’s permission and it’s a blockbuster.

  5. Dianne,
    I was truly looking forward to meeting you and a lot of other folks, but had to cancel at the last minute (sick child, all better now, of course!) I was quite disappointed. It sounds like it was great, but that’s the way the cookie crumbles, ha ha. I love hearing all about it and look forward to next year.
    Sally Vargas

    • Sorry to hear, Sally. There’s not much you can do. But you can look forward to next year!

  6. Hi Dianne,
    I really enjoyed your workshop on Staying Ahead of the Curve. In fact, I dreamt about using video on my blog last night! It was my first IACP conference and I was truly blown away by the experience, the people I met, the welcoming and positive attitude and the food (of course). My mind is reeling with ideas but I think I need a few days to recover before I put any into action. You would be pleased to know that one of the people I met in your small workshop helped to get a reporter to attend our Kids Cook for a Cause event on Saturday – and the story was in Sunday’s Oregonian!

    • Wow, that’s fantastic, Michelle. Yes, I tweeted about the story earlier today because I was so proud of you and Laura Martin-Bacon, serving food to the homeless and teaching underserved kids to cook.

      Think about the video. I’m not sure we authors have to do it. We just have to think about how to incorporate it. I’ll write more about that later.

  7. Don’t know how you did it–already back and posting! I just finally got my luggage tonight (it went to one airport, I to another) and am still in a stupor from the whirl of ideas, energy and non-stop interaction. After more than 20 years of attending these, you’d think they might be “samey,” but I’m not bored yet. Too hard to choose what I liked best–maybe reconnecting with all those I’ve gotten to know, including you!

    • You have further to go, sistah. I left Saturday afternoon on a 1.5 hour flight to Oakland. And when I got to my desk, Ruhlman had already posted!

      Wow, you’ve been going to IACP for 20 years! It’s amazing, isn’t it, how different it is each year — not just because of the venue and who attends, but because how we’ve changed. Now you have a blog and you tweet. I’m sure you met the people you communicate with in social media — a whole new audience.

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