The Diva That Helped Throw The IACP Launch Party

When you go to a party that’s hosted by a person who LOVES and makes GREAT food, you know it’s going to be a FABULOUS party because GREAT food makes a party.

But there’s a step up from this, and that’s when you go to a party filled with hundreds of people who LOVE and make GREAT food and there’s GREAT food and drink, to boot. That, my friends, is a FOOD LOVE FEST!

That was the scene at Santos Party House last Monday for the International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP) Launch Party for “The Fashion of Food” Program. In March 2012, the IACP annual conference is coming to New York City for the first time in thirty years. The theme of the upcoming conference is the The Fashion of Food: an exploration of where food, fashion and media connect.

I’m working with the IACP host committee to help make the New York conference a smashing success and we decided that we needed to celebrate with a BIG OL’ PARTAY!!!!

And what a party it was with cookbook authors, celebrity chefs, entrepreneurs, restaurateurs, chefs, writers, bloggers, food PR professionals, food app developers, butchers, bakers, salumi makers, brand representatives, recipe testers, nutritionists, journalists, hobbyists, photographers, radio hosts, culinary historians, and so many more culinary professionals from all over the tri-state and beyond in attendance.

What I loved was the range in ages and lifestyles. At one point someone said, “If a non-food person walked into this event, he would not be able to understand what brought this diverse group of people together in the same room.” But everyone who was there knew. All the IACP members know. It’s the LOVE of FOOD.

Food is a common ground. A leveler of differences. A conversation piece. And guess what we were all talking about? FOOD!!! While we ate wonderful food provided by the very generous sponsors who provided nibbles and drinks and even sculptures that reflected the theme for the conference.

Driscoll’s Berries brilliantly covered a dress form with strawberries and blueberries as the centerpiece of their berry bar—it was a show stopper! She was looking mighty sharp on the night and of course the berries were delicious! We decided her name should be Halle.
Jarlsberg Cheese teamed up with two talented and creative food bloggers who are also designers, Erin Stutts from Ugly Food Tastes Better and Emily Hanhan of Nomnivorous. They created the most fashionable display of cow ladies strutting their stuff on the House of Jarlsberg runway! Too CUTE!

Pork never goes out of fashion. The butchers from Salumeria Rosi Parmacotto had a splendiferous display of their delectable salumi: mortadella, prosciutto di Parma, salami and this porchetta that was TO DIE FOR! I would have totally worn that. Lady Gaga was silly to make that meat dress outta raw meat. Wrap this girl in thinly sliced proscuitto, please.

Hearty, freshly baked bread and beautifully crafted cheese are two of the simplest pleasures in life. The folks from Bobolink Dairy & Bakehouse had mountains of both at the party. Their display looked like a cheese and bread SPECTACULAR, and it tasted even more spectacular. At the end of the night, the luckier guests got loaves of bread to take home. I’m still nibbling on the cranberry walnut loaf—toasted and dripping in butter—making it last.

Now the owner of Jimmy’s No. 43 is a clever lad. He had his team cook up two appetizers, one with pulled-pork crostini with squash that people were still dreaming about a few days later, and the other a robust chicken liver and kale panzanella salad. Both delish and wisely good for soaking up alcohol—CLEVER. Plus, all the razzle-dazzle was behind the table—the always fashionable ladies of Jimmy’s No. 43 serving it up for the crowd. BRAVO!

And we were still fashionable washing it down, sipping Blackberry Cobbler cocktails from Bull Dog Gin, a selection of beers from Brooklyn Brewery and Brooklyn wines (did I just write that?) from Brooklyn Oenology Tasting Room, and the most fashionable Voss Water. Not only is Voss refreshing and delicious, but who does not look good drinking it—the bottle dresses up any outfit!

All in all it was a FAB party even though I was a little stuffy on the night from the cold that knocked me out the next. I avoided kissing anyone, but I think I may have gotten a little HUG burn and it was totally worth it!

So cool to see tons of my old friends from past conference whom I don’t get to see except at the annual conference, along with so many people that I am able to see much more because I’m based in NYC and get to host and attend events for food people. New Yorkers are lucky, and we’re feeling might lucky to have the conference in New York City—it’s going to ROCK!

I can’t wait for the next pre-conference event and to see everyone again at the conference! Plus, this is my first conference where I will meet a bunch of people that I’ve befriended over Twitter and Facebook and have yet to meet in real life. I’m supremely excited. My only regret is the conference is only five days long. I can already see that there’s not enough time. I foresee tears at the end of it and maybe a few even earlier.


But for now no tears just gratitude. I really want to thank everyone who helped make this party happen, almost out of thin air, especially Lisa Cusano, Gavin Stephenson and the Santos Party House owners and crew, Judith Klinger and the IACP-NYC host committee, Jeff Albucher, Jimmy Carbone and the Food Karma crew, Joe Doughney (my hero), Dj Snacky Tunes the volunteers, everyone who came. those who wanted to come, but didn’t make it and all the people on the Social Media and PR Team for the IACP conference who helped get the BUZZ going.

Here are some other folks who wrote about the party:

Kathy Blake Experimental Gourmand
Judith Aroma Cucina
Emily Hanhan Nomnivorous
Eryn Stutts Ugly Food Tastes Better
Dan Renegade Kitchen
David Joachim IACP Blog

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