November 14, 2014

NYCWFF Grand Tasting & Down Home Country Brunch

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Last month we had the opportunity to go to the NYCWFF thanks to ShopRite Potluck!! We were so excited leading up to the weekend and it didn’t disappoint at all. On Saturday we drove into the city from NJ and went to our hotel to drop off our belongings. Then we headed straight down to the pier as quick as we could to get into the Grand Tasting before we had to work our shift at the Potluck stand of the ShopRite booth. The Grand Tasting is amazing, there were hundreds and hundreds of booths set up with vendors giving out tastes of both food and alcohol. There is no way anyone can try everything that is available, even if you had the whole 5 hours and a huge appetite so you have to carefully pick and choose what’s worth it to you.

 Flavors Fleet Street

Fleet Street Kitchen located in Baltimore, MD had what I would consider to be my personal favorite bite of the day which was their Braised Short Rib. They also offered a Pumpkin Triffle that had mini marshmallows on top. I paired these two delicious offerings with some Pinot Grigio.

flavors pretzels

This Churro flavored pretzel with Nutella dipping sauce was from the Cooking Channel booth. They also had an Everything pretzel with honey mustard sauce as well as a Za’tar pretzel with middle eastern spices paired with a Tazaiki Greek yogurt dipper, but I was in a dessert kind of mood. Since there aren’t a lot of tables and chairs set up we grabbed our pretzels and went over to watch one of my favorite food network star Rachel Ray do a cooking demo!!

flavors wine

Here we are in front of the a wine truck. We were total advocates for the Wine Glass Necklaces which make holding your tiny plates of food easier as your beverage dangles in front of you. Just be sure not to walk around with it full. Plus an extra bonus is it keeps the amount of glasses that break during the event minimal since everyone has them hanging from their necks!

On Sunday ShopRite sent us to the Down Home Country Brunch over at the Midtown Hilton hosted by the beautiful and talented country singer and food network star Trisha Yearwood who we got to meet!! We even had two out of the three of my sisters join us for the day as well. This event was different than the Grand Tasting as it was much smaller and more intimate in a ballroom set up with tables so that everyone could sit down and eat after they went up to get their food.

Flavors shrimp and grits

These shrimp and cheesy gits with collard greens and ham were the best plate of the day in my opinion. Lev Gewirtzman is the chef and owner of Mayfield in Brooklyn and I’m dying to go and try out what wonderful creations he has in store for his guests. The white shoepeg corn pudding that went along with the BBQ ribs was really good as well from the Hill Country BBQ Market.

flavors milk and eggs

The little cup on the left was Damaris Phillip’s Cornbread in sweet milk that had a drizzle of honey. Although it sounds like a strange combination it was clearly my families favorite as every single one of us brought two or three of those tiny cups back to our table. Damaris Phillips won the 9th season of The Next Food Network Star on the Food Network and I was so glad to be able to meet her. She’s from Kentucky and has an adorable southern accent. There was something about the cold milk with the cornbread that made it delightful. The plate on the right was open faced shrimp benedict from Damian McDowell from Marietta in Brooklyn.