Foodbuzz Festival Gala Dinner
This is my final post on the Second Annual Foodbuzz Festival I attended this weekend in San Francisco. After this, I’ll be getting back to blogging about the other places I’ve been eating at. You can read my previous posts on the Street Food Fare event and the Taste Pavilion event.
The gala dinner was held at the Ferry Building, a popular attraction in SF, especially for foodies. It is home to the famous Farmer’s market, and houses a plethora of shops and restaurants. I had hoped to explore the Farmer’s market and the shops inside the Ferry Building, but the busy schedule the Foodbuzz Festival committee had planned didn’t leave me much time.
I was able to arrive about an hour before the gala to explore the stores inside the Ferry Building, though most of them were already closed for the night. I did manage to do some shopping at Sur La Table. I will have to come back at another point to try the food at the shops inside the Ferry Building.
The gala started with a cocktail hour outside with passed hors d’oeuvres. Afterward, we made our way inside to be seated for a four course dinner sponsored by the Cooking Channel. The dining room was beautifully decorated with sparkling little lights.
Going in to the dinner, I have to admit, my expectations were not high for the quality of food we would be served. However, I was pleasantly surprised. The dinner courses were wonderfully prepared and on par to many of the fine dining places I’ve eaten at.
Our first course was a Roasted Golden Beet tart. The tart was made of polenta and was accompanied by chopped red beets. I’m not a huge fan of polenta, so this was my least favorite course.
The next course was Seared Scallops with Fennel. I love scallops, but usually the scallop dishes I eat are overcooked or too raw. The scallops on my plate were cooked a perfect medium rare. They were some of the best scallops I’ve had.
Our third course was a Rosemary and Garlic Infused Rack of Lamb, served with local wild mushrooms and butternut squash puree. Each person was served a generous portion of lamb. Mine was still slightly pink in the middle, which is how I like my meat cooked. The chops were tender, though they lacked a little in the flavor department. I really enjoyed the butternut squash puree. It was a great twist on the classic mashed potatoes side usually served.
Our final course was a butter almond cake with oranges and a sherry sauce. The cake wasn’t too sweet and was pretty light as far as desserts go.
With each course, we were also served a different wine. I liked that we were given different wine glasses for each wine so that we didn’t feel the need to finish the previous course’s wine. The dinner was a long event, but a perfect way to get to really bond with the people at your table.
There was one more event the next day: a farewell brunch. I chose not to attend the final event. The rainy forecast, exhaustion from the previous days, and the long commute factored into my decision. Had I been staying in SF, I definitely would have attended the final day. All in all, the Foodbuzz Festival was a fun experience full of food, wine, and meeting great people.