Monday, October 13, 2014

American Culinary Federation (ACF) Caxambas Chapter's 2014 Culinary and Foodservice Vendor Showcase

The American Culinary Federation's (ACF) Caxambas Chapter of Naples and Marco Island, held its annual Culinary and Food Service Vendor Showcase  at Estero's  Hyatt Regency Coconut Point Resort & Spa today, Monday October 13, 2014. The ACF This, and other events have funded culinary student's scholarships for 25 years.

There were over 70 vendors at the Showcase, from organic farmers to chocolatiers; honey producers to Wagyu beef purveyors. Seafood from Maine and Spain caught my eye...and palate. 
       OK. So what do these vendors and their presence mean to you? A lot, if you eat at  restaurants or country clubs in Lee and Collier counties-these vendors supply a good portion of your food!  Judging from my dining at the restaurants that select their foods, and what I tasted and saw today-you are in very, very good hands.

  Event Chair, ACF Caxambas Chapter Board Member and Shadow Wood Executive Chef Richard Crisanti spent months organizing the event, which featured  a "Ready, Set, COOK!" competition where students are paired with chefs in cooking competitions.  ACF Caxambas Chapter President and Twin Eagles Club Executive Chef Chas Tatigian was active meeting and greeting attendees.
Chefs Chas Tatigian and Richard Crisanti
 The ACF is the  national culinary professional's organization for current and future chefs and pastry chefs with apprenticeships, continuing education and  certifications.
Internationally regarded Chef Alexander Talbot, known for his pacesetting blog- demonstrated cooking "off the cuff" with products he sourced in a quick walk around the Showcase area.

 He paired  Halpern's Seafood's Alaskan King crab with zucchini, and sautéing sous vide prepared short ribs paired with other ingredients. Taste test? The results were over the top.  "Bursting with flavor" a phrase we hear too often, truly describes his creations (More photos towards bottom of post).

Below is a sampling of just a few of the vendors. Next time you dine out, chances are pretty good that these vendors sourced your produce, meats or seafood.
Jabba Fine Food's Seafood- Ready for Smokin'
Jabba's Smoked Salmon, Scallops, Duck, and Various Spreads
Rational's Chef April Shaw
Chef Shaw's Super Tender and Flavorful Pulled Pork
Halperns' Amazingly Fresh Steaks and Seafood, Including 6 Foot Wide Alaskan Crab
A HUGE Puppy- Larger Than Caroline or Billy
Freshpoint's Produce
Still Life with Cape Gooseberries
Freshpoint's Cornucopia
Happy Foods' Michael with Romanesco Broccoli
Happy Foods Fall Treats
Happy Food's Great Aged Gouda
Raisins- fresh from the Raisin Tree
Culinary Judges Consultation
Chef Gahabka's Autumn Salad with Cranberry-Cheddar Butternut Squash Croutons, Pumpkin 'n Cranberry Crystals Drizzled with Apple Cider Pumpkin Chia Vinaigrette
North Star's Diver Scallop Stars in a Riff on a BLT- by Chef Dan Kniola
Chef Kniola and Cecelia Rosen

Chef Gahabka, Chef Joel Barnes, Al Levine, Cecelia Rosen, Chef Kniola at North Star Seafood
Chef's Warehouse
Wagyu/American Style Kobe Beef From Pilotbrands
Braveheart's Meats
Florida Urban Organics
Boar's Head Cheeses
Boar's Head Charcuterie Plate
NY Strip Steak, Diced Guanciale, Sweet Potato, Butternut Squash, Lingonberries and Zinfandel from Grand Western (Cheney Brothers)
NY Strip Steak, Guanciale, Squash, et alia -Fall Flavors at Their Best
Sysco's Garden Fresh Kale and Vegetable Blend ( Their Mozzarella Cheese-Topped Pizza is Tops)
Saucy Sauces from Naples' Own Sunset Spices and Specialties, Inc.
Chocoholics' "Holy Grail"- The Cacao Pod-Shake, Rattle and Roll It
PolyScience's Dual Sous Vide Set Up- The Perfect Stocking Stuffer for Your  Chef
Melt in Your Mouth Tender Pork Belly after 30 Hour 65 Degree C. Bath-Thanks to Chef Chris Jones
Landert Bread's Artisanal Baked Goods from Switzerland and France
Landert's Pretzels, Rolls and Breads
Landert's Fresh Baked Pies Rock!
Students Intently Listening to Chef Alexander Talbot
Chef Talbot Intently Cooking on Stage
Chef Talbot's Intently Savory Short Ribs
Chef Talbot's Zucchini and Alaskan King Crab- The Taste is Over the Top

Why Would People Take Photos of Food, When They Could be Taking 'n Posting Perfectly Good Selfies Instead?
Today's Take Home Message:  Think "ABC's" - Always Be Creative
Palms In Front of  The Hyatt Regency -Life is Good,Especially in Florida


Anonymous said...

C'mon, Ivan. I'm a big fan of your blog and I've used it to find restaurants when visiting my mom wintering in Ft. Myers. But your output has gone down to almost nothing. And what you do post about are events that you are invited to, not restaurants we can visit. You are my fifth bookmark under "food," so I click on you almost daily, and months go by... You are leaving me with the Chowhound Florida board, which isn't very active for Ft. Myers/Naples, or looking up Jean leBoeuf. I certainly hope there is nothing limiting your reviewing, but I miss reading regular reviews, particularly as the season has started and I'll be there in a couple months.

Ivan Seligman said...

Happy New year!

Yes, I've been remiss in posting-part of which has been that few people Google restaurants by name or look for local food blogs or Chowhound. I often ask people at a restaurant "How did you decide to go to this restaurant?" The answers are telling.

Now, many are lazy or efficient and just go to Yelp or Tripadvisor, where the positive and negative reviews are too often written by employees and their families vs competing restaurant's employees and families. Nasty. Some of the tiniest restaurants have gotten to be #1 on Tripadvisor -by sponsoring campaigns by customers to write in and vote, in exchange for a drink or dessert. I'll start up again, seeing that you and others do care. Perhaps we can grab a Nosh when you're in town?!