May 24, 2010

I Met Eric Ripert!

For my birthday among other things, Steve bought me tickets to the Foodie Experience: An Evening with Eric Ripert/Anthony Bourdain Foodie Experience at the Hippodrome Theatre that was held on Saturday night.

The evening of anecdotes, questions, and answers was hosted by Reagan of Mix 106.5. The chefs talked about all sorts of topics from contestants on Top Chef, working in the restaurant business, family, traveling, and of course food. Anthony Bourdain was asked what food trend he dislikes the most and he said cupcakes :( I'm still a fan though. I really did gain a lot of insight on what it is like to work in the food industry and I gained a lot of respect for restaurant chefs. After last night, I began thinking about how crazy it is that chefs today are as famous as rock stars.

For those who purchased a certain ticket (we did!), there was a special food tasting from local Baltimore area restaurants after the talk. Here is a list of restaurants that were there:

City Cafe
Taverna Corvino
Brewer's Art
Ryleigh's Oyster
Woodberry Kitchen
The Wine Market
Rumor Mill
Ale Mary's
Max's Empanadas
Sweet Sin Bakery
Diamondback Tavern
Peter's Inn
Dangerously Delicious Pies
A. Kirchmayr Chocolatier
Baltimore Pho
Antrim 1844
Mr. Rain's Funhouse
Spectrum Catering

Both, Steve and I agree that the food from City Cafe was the best of the night. They offered a cream of crab soup and watermelon bruschetta that was absolutely delicious. I had a chance to talk to the executive chef and compliment him.

Baltimore Pho had a prize wheel at their station which was fun because I won a free appetizer and Steve a shirt! We liked their garlic beef.

I was totally shocked to see that Ryleigh's Oyster was offering freshly shucked oysters on the half shell. Wow!

Being a HoCo local, I wanted to check out the Portalli's table. Portalli's was offering sea bass and a panna cotta and strawberries with a balsamic reduction. The sea bass was quite tasty and the panna cotta was ok, however, I was really impressed with them at how perfectly the fish was cooked despite not having an oven/stove at the event!

Other highlights from the night, MEETING CHEF ERIC RIPERT!!!!! Both, he and Anthony Bourdain were walking around sampling food from the local restaurants and at the same time were being bombarded by fans. I couldn't snag a pic with Chef Bourdain, but hey, ERIC RIPERT!

Chefs at the Portalli's table!

I really enjoyed myself at this event. I know as of recent, Baltimore hasn't really been known for too much besides it's high crime rate and slumping baseball team and because of that I'm really glad Baltimore had a chance to host something of this kind. Something positive and shows a better side of Baltimore- it's up and coming local food scene!

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