Gone in 60 Seconds: Pebble Beach Food & Wine

When you think of Pebble Beach, it’s easy to conjure up images of beautiful golf greens overlooking waves from the Pacific Ocean crashing down on the rocky shores. But over the last four days it was also about food and wine. No doubt, a beautiful setting, and a first class event.

Despite the rain, people enthusiastically took in cooking demos, tastings, and book signings and mingled while dark clouds continued to circle. Undaunted, Loni and I joined in on Saturday and Sunday. I had forgotten how short drive is to the coast from San Jose: 40 miles South on 101, followed by a short jaunt across 156 to the East, and then into the Monterey area – about 60 minutes. My pulse quickens every time when I get close to the destination. The scenery is dreamy, maybe even more so with the mist, the fog, and the clouds.

I admit I was surprised how well run the Pebble Beach Food & Wine event was. There were seldom lineups, access to all the amenities was a snap, as was parking. The organizers put on a stellar, relaxed and fun time. Just the way it should be, no?

I’ve been to so many of these and the crowds just turn me off royally. This time, I was able to enjoy the epicurean wonders. Normally the domain of Loni I was able to sample lamb chops, caviar, refreshing fruit sorbets (I think that’s what they were), and, of course, taste several wines including one of our favorites, Etude. However, despite having access to 200 wineries, I have to agree with Loni that the food is what really sets this event apart. I was able to get up close and watch Michael Chiarello whip up food right across from Iron Chef Morimoto, although I’d score this round in favor of the latter.

But I’ll leave it to Loni for a future post to describe the event, food in more detail and more accurately than I could ever could. On this occasion I was just the guy, again, with a camera chasing her around – trying to keep focus, trying not to knock things over. Also, it was the perfect opportunity to get the new Canon T2i rig into the field for a shoot!

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