Sunday, November 3, 2013

Acheson, Dean Headline Metro Cooking DC Day 1

Timothy Dean brings the sizzle

DC foodies came out in force for day one of the eighth annual Metro Cooking DC show at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center yesterday. Top Chefs Hugh Acheson and Timothy Dean led an impressive lineup of culinary stars that were on hand to participate in the Celebrity Theater, book signings and cooking lessons.

Top Chef is my favorite reality TV show, so I was particularly excited to see Acheson & Dean in person. Dean, who just opened TDBurger in NoMa (great burgers... you have to go) cooked up some sizzling skirt steaks (with authentic Jerk seasoning) and will return today. Acheson had a full plate (pun intended) before flying back to Atlanta last night. Sadly, the super-friendly Acheson has no plans to open a restaurant in DC; although he took time to sing the praises of José Andrés, Bryan Voltaggio and others, 'DC has so many great restaurants.' Trust me Hugh, the nation's capital always has room for a Top Chef Master.

Hugh Acheson offers advice to two prospective chefs

Lots of vendors, many with local ties were on hand to show off their goodies. Potomac, Maryland-based MeatCrafters provided samples of some of the best cured meats I've ever tasted. If you have a chance, stop by later today and try Ararat (a Middle Eastern salami that's insanely flavorful) Spanish-influenced Fuet and Truffle Mania (with its playful mix of black and white truffles.) This is why shows like this are so valuable... They provide potential customers and top vendors a chance to "get to know each other." To think Slim Jims were on my shopping list for next week: Shame on me.

Hold the Alcohol with Tanisha Townsend

Sampler fans had lots to choose from, as there was no shortage of sips and tastes available. Chips, dips, chocolates, even pulled pork samples were there for the taking tasting. I'll be sure to pace myself before heading over to the first ever Grand Tasting Pavilion later today (1-4) featuring 40+ bites from some of the top eateries in the DC Metropolitan Area.

Great turnout for MeatCrafters

In case you missed it, we're in November; and that means six weeks or less for holiday shopping. Be sure to catch the debut of Metro Cooking DC's Holiday Bazaar, where you can find tons of ideas for that "perfect gift." You weren't going to give Gift Cards again this year, were you?

Day 2 gets underway at 10 this morning, closing at 5:00 PM. The Grand Tasting Pavilion is open from 1-4, with an Smörgåsbord of celebrity appearances, cooking classes, and tastings in between. Click here for today's full schedule.

Angeli Gourmet

Celebrity Bookstore

15 calorie Margaritas, courtesy of Drink Skinny