I hope everyone is having a great summer. It’s been wet to say the least, but still a good one so far. Before I talk about the conference, the next General meeting will be held at the Duquesne Club on 28 August at 7:00 pm. There will be a Pastry Presentation by William Racin the club's Exec. Pastry Chef. There will be Hors D’ Oeuvres and a cash bar prior to the presentation and a dessert buffet after. Please remember to dress appropriately business casual is required. No jeans, sneakers, or tee shirts. Parking & club entrance is on the 6th floor of the Liberty Ave garage.
As I mentioned in my last letter, the ACF National Conference was held in Orlando at Disney Worlds Coronado Springs Resort, 09-13 July. The accommodations were very comfortable and the weather was HOT & HUMID!
The conference started with hands on classes through out the day. These have an added expense added to them. A few of these classes were: Fruit & Vegetable Carving, Ice Carving for Food and Beverage display, Authentic Peruvian Cuisine, ServSafe Managers Course, to name a few. The welcome reception that night was a very nice array of action and stationary stations. It was a time to meet new friends and see a few older ones.
The conference was filled with many seminars, demos, and lectures all day from 8:00 am – 4:30 pm. The Opening Session was the usual 8:00-12:00 with three presenters: Emily Ellyn, Lorena Garcia, and Francisco Migoya. Emily Ellyn shared her culinary journey which inspired her passion for food. Lorena Garcia, who is a Venezuelan born chef, Johnson & Wales Grad, restaurateur, and author, talked about traditional complex Latin cuisine and making it healthier. She also talked about “Big Chef, Little Chef, a non-profit program to help children and their families take control of their eating habits. Francisco Migoya ModernistCuisines head chef discussed the innovative work that went the book Modernist Bread. He showed and talked about the extensive research & development process as well as sharing the science and history of bread as well as the techniques and ingredients that will shape its future.
Along with the great seminars, there was the business part as well. Budget and policy discussions and by-law word changes were among the topics covered.
Other seminars included Floridian Cuisine with Norman Van Aken, Finding time for Health, Fitness, & Future with Charles Carroll CEC, AAC and Eric the Trainer, Hollywood Physique Expert (who has ties to Pittsburgh). They discussed how to incorporate health and fitness into a daily routine. Andrew Nutter CCE, CCC of IUP discussed how to plan your career. Rich Rosendale talked about the importance of reinvention of your food and yourself. John Noble Masi, talked about treating your customers like guests and personalizing their experiences.
Other seminars included; allergen awareness, Savory Sauces Fruit inspired BBQ sauces, Bee Keeping, The New Healthcare Foodservice, Savor the Flavor by Costa Magoulas CEC, CCE, CCA, AAC, The Efficient Innovative Kitchen by Poly Science Culinary.
There was also the Jr. Culinary Team Competition, Knowledge Bowl Competition, National Chef of the Year, National Pastry Chef of the Year, and ACF Culinary Team 2020 Team Tryouts, as well as the ACF Trade show.
All in all I wish I could have seen more, but it’s impossible. On a personal note, the highlight for me was the AAC induction and Ceremony. I was truly humbled by the experience.
Rikk Panzera, CEC, CCE, AAC