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After an amazing culinary adventure at the Food & Wine Classic in Aspen, Betty’s back to the comforts of home in Los Angeles. And by comforts she means intolerable traffic, the sound of leaf blowers, and of course, her Snuggie. While Betty edits video footage captured at the Classic (featuring interviews with Chef Michael Chiarello, Chef Ming Tsai and Chef Stephanie Izard — coming soon!), here’s a little taste of how Betty rolls at the greatest food and wine celebration on Earth!
The quaint town of Aspen, renowned as a world-class ski resort (and less renowned as the backdrop of Jim Carrey’s Dumb & Dumber) offers many treasures including the coveted site of the Classic…
BARBECUE WITH JOSE ANDRES
Betty arrives in Aspen in the nick-of-time to attend a Spanish-style barbecue hosted by Chef Jose Andres and Wines from Spain. Chef Andres treats the crowd to tapas, hoagies and an assortment of sausages. Delicious wines pair beautifully with the tasty treats. As a cool rain falls on the hungry audience, Andres proudly carves an entire lamb. Betty witnesses first-hand as Chef Andres extracts the kidneys, slices them and feeds them to admiring Top Chefs. For a brief moment, Betty questions if she’s in an episode of I’m a Food Blogger… Get Me Out of Here!
PARTY AT D19 RESTAURANT
The next Classic indulgence was at D19 Restaurant. Pictured above is a Crispy Pork Skewer with Marmalade. Yum! There was also a Pureed Shrimp Crostini, Abalone Clam Ceviche, Caprese with Caviar and a melt-in-your mouth Fried Onion with Orange Marmalade.
But the Ahi Tuna with Avocado on Potato Crisp stole Betty’s heart. Sure, it’s a trendy appetizer now, but the Ahi was so fresh and the potato crisp was a fun twist. A fine selection of Bastianich Wines were served, which should have been an indication of what (or who) was to come!
Chef Mario Batali arrives! Sporting his trademark orange crocs and khaki shorts, Batali talks with fans and poses for pictures. Also in the house? Restaurateur and Wine Connoisseur Joe Bastianich, son of Lidia Bastianich, Chef Michael Chiarello and Top Chef Hosea Rosenberg.
WOOT! THE GIFT BAG!
Betty returns home from the Classic not only with priceless memories on her mind and awesome footage on her video camera. Oh no. Betty returns with a pirate-sized bounty of culinary treasures in the Classic’s Gift Bag! Oh yes, this baby is fit for even the most pampered Hollywood “A-list” celebrity.
Not just a potato peeler, not just an ice cream scoop. Nope. How about an entire set of Kitchen Aid tools! And not just one pound of Green & Black Organic Chocolates. Try two! How dare you, Green & Black.
Now throw in a set of Stella Artois gold-trimmed glasses, and spices from McCormick. For Betty, this is seriously exciting… like being in one of those phone booths full of swirling money!
Alright, the swirling money phone booth comparison is a bit much, but check out the Grey Goose bottle cozy! Seriously cool. And perhaps the most luxurious gift, Sweep refining exfoliant from the St. Regis Spa, Remede. Lovey. And just when it seems Betty’s bag runneth over, a box of Robert Mondavi wine glasses are placed on top.
Would an A-list Hollywood celebrity be expected to lug all of this loot home? Of course not. And fortunately, neither would Average Betty. Hello, FedEx! Thank you!
WHEN AVATARS COME TO LIFE
Certainly one of the greatest treasures of the Classic was meeting fellow food bloggers in-person for the first time! From the left, Jennifer of Daily Blender, Chef John of Food Wishes and of course, Heidi of Savory TV who helped make Betty’s trip possible. And if you’re wondering about the photo, Patron Tequila hosted a party at the Brexi Brasserie where the tequila flowed like beer and embarrassing photos spewed from the Patron Photo Booth like an episode of TMZ. Nothing like good tequila, and lots of it, to help get acquainted with your online friends a little faster in the real world.
Betty also met the gorgeous gourmands of Food Buzz, Ryan Stern, Kiersten Stevens and Devon O’Donnell. Do you think they get the Charlie’s Angel comparison much? And, yeah, that’s Chef John again. All the ladies just love to pose with him.
MORE TO COME!
Much more to come from the Food & Wine Classic in Aspen… including a recap of The Best New Chefs Dinner and Classic Quickfire, a look at sustainable farming and of course celebrity chef interviews with Michael Chiarello, Ming Tsai and Stephanie Izard!
Thanks to Plum TV and American Express Publishing for making Betty’s trip to the Food & Wine Classic in Aspen possible.
Chef John says
From the subtle brilliance of the headline, to the good sense to include not one, but two, photos of Chef John, this is a GREAT post.
Average Betty says
We all need more Chef John! Meeting you was a true highlight :)
Seriously the best photo face ever.
Average Betty says
Chef John could be a character at Disneyland to pose with. Unfortunately my tongue could be at Ripley’s.
Charlie Nault says
have u tried the Fried Quesada Bites recipe
Christie @ Fig & Cherry says
Lurve the spotlight on the meat! :)
Gera @ SweetsFoods says
The lighting is cooking the meat with Chef Andres, It’ll take time lol :)
Excellent post and photos!
Average Betty says
Hey Charlie! I haven’t yet… but I will :)
Hi Christie, It was spectacular indeed :)
Thanks, Gera! The lamb was actually roasting down by a raging river for several hours. It was so tender and delicious!
Christy Jordan says
Betty, how can anyone not absolutely love everything about you and AverageBetty.com!
They can’t, it’s impossible! You just get getting Good and GOODER!!!
Thrilled to know ya and thank you for the great posts and humor!
Average Betty says
Christy – you are the best! I am thrilled to know you and feel ultimately blessed that I do :)