Manic Monday

Manic Monday

Writing about food as a blogger is a lot of fun. Some weeks are crazier than others, but I’m always open to have a fun time and see something new. This next week is going to be busier than most for me because of food blog opportunities, my normal day job and some family stuff. I have an event every night this week!
Monday Night – Food & Wine Chef Showcase

I’ve always enjoyed this event for many reasons. I once cooked at it and remember it getting so busy we ran out of food even though we had 1,500 portions for an estimated 1,000 people. We did that in about 90 minutes with another hour to go. Thankfully, the restaurant got us more food! As a past attendee, it was fun to then get to enjoy wandering the Museum of Modern Art eating food from some of the best chefs in Chicago. Last night completed the circle, I was invited to attend as a media guest.

This was by far the most fun for a number of reasons. First, I was able to enter at 6pm, about 30 minutes before the crowd of hungry people. Getting to sneak in a few bites without waiting in line and talk to chefs before they’re inundated with questions and praise, always nice. Second, this is a very well-heeled crowd so the ladies were dressed to go out and the men complemented their dates! Lastly, the lineup of chefs is top notch and rivals every event in town. Best bites for me came from Takashi (Slurping Turtle) – salmon on flatbread was simple but well dressed (pizza like), Stephanie Izard (Girl and the Goat) – Goat Chili, always fun to make her laugh with a ridiculous question, why do you always use goat? and Sarah Jordan (Pastry Chef, Boka and GT Fish & Oyster) Banana and Chocolate dessert!

But for me last night became very cool, when I got to meet Dana Cowin, Editor-in-Chief of Food & Wine magazine. You’ve seen her on Top Chef and other shows as a judge or hosting events we all want to attend. She’s the one who gives out the F&W 10 Best New Chefs Award each year. That award alone has launched a number of chef’s careers. It all got a little surreal when she asked us where she should go eat since she only had a short window for lunch today! Actually, change that it got surreal when she started entering notes on her phone – she’s going to take my advice! Gulp! When she first asked, I honestly kind of drew a blank which made me laugh since most of you know I’m full of opinions. Thankfully, my friend got the ball rolling with ideas so I looked/appeared to be a little less “deer in the headlights” than I was.

The other entertaining part of the evening that made me realize maybe this “blog thing” isn’t so bad is when a friend texted me – I wish I was at this (link to F&W event) tonight! My reply – oh, you mean the even I’m at? Needless to say the responses after that got a bit colorful and jealous.
So with one Manic Monday behind me, I’m already getting ready for a busy day of work and then a press dinner tonight at Michael Jordan’s. Hard to say no to steak!

Joe Campagna is the Chicago Food Snob. A former restaurant General Manager, Server and Chef you can find him on twitter @chifoodsnob. You can reach him through email at Joe also contributes to Chicago and

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