Several weeks ago, my friend Keren, founder of Foodportunity, asked members of the local foodie community to let her know “what Foodportunity means to them”; as a way to gather insight, thoughts, and perspective on an event that has been a Seattle staple since 2009. I wanted to share a little bit about what Foodportunity means to me.
I remember my first Foodportunity experience like it was yesterday. It was the Fall of 2009; back when I was a foodie “newbie”. I remember going with a friend because I was kind of nervous and not really sure what to expect. As soon as we checked in at the entrance, we walked into a blurred sea of enthusiastic people, delicious food, and vibrant conversations. Everything seemed to be brimming with life, brimming with excitement among each other and for each other, and, perhaps most of all, brimming with a fundamental love of good food.
That’s the brilliance of Foodportunity; and particularly of it being in Seattle. Seattle is such a mecca for the foodie community. There are so many unique restaurants, food trucks, and chefs out there, and, luckily for us, they all converge in this fantastic city. Foodportunity wonderfully brings all that talent together for one special night and represents the best of the Seattle food community.
I had heard of Keren through the friend I was going with, but I hadn’t actually met her. I distinctly remember meeting her there at the event. She was so welcoming and warm; if maybe a bit frazzled, as she was trying to be in twenty places at once! I immediately was and still am fond of her. Not only because I feel like we’re kindred spirits in that we’re both “doers”, but that she has such a passion for Foodportunity and its continued growth and success. That passion is clearly evident if you’ve been around her for even five minutes! Her love and enthusiasm for Foodportunity is wonderful and contagious.
I have since been to almost every Foodportunity event (I missed ONE- dang it!) and was honored when Keren asked me to make a cake for the event in 2010:
Foodportunity to Seattle, as well as the foodie community, represents the opportunity to experience all things food. Whether it be preparing the food, sharing the food, photographing the food, or writing about the food. Seattle truly has it all and Foodportunity showcases it beautifully.
Foodportunity for me personally represents growth as a person. Around the time I had started going to the Foodportunity events, I had been cake decorating for several years, and had a cake business. I was also doing more and more photography and was enjoying that as well. I was just really starting to come into my own as an artist, and realizing that I had something to say (I’m a science major and am still in the science field now, so I had always thought of myself as more of a “left-brained” person). As all this was coming together and I was growing creatively and artistically, I was attending the Foodportunity events. To fundamentally grow as a person is something I think is important and is something I strive for, and this positive and supporting, environment has really been beneficial for me and I thank Keren and Foodportunity for that.
Foodportunity not only represents growth for me as a person, but as a cookbook author as well. Being at these events, and hearing other peoples’ stories about writing their cookbooks, what they learned from it, the pros and cons, etc have all been helpful in writing my own with another another “Keren” I know (Karen Binkhorst-a local, private chef and caterer)! Our cookbook is entitled “Every Bite: How to Make the Most of Your Meals“, and is a green, sustainable-themed cookbook aimed at reducing food waste in the kitchen and doing that by making many fantastic, easy recipes. It is hopefully coming out by the end of this year: just in time for the holidays!
We’re so thankful for the guidance and conversation throughout the years and we hope to be able to show off our hard work at an upcoming event.
Foodportunity represents sharing what we have to offer with a positive and encouraging foodie family. It’s learning about what others are doing and how they’re interested in growing and developing as people and artists. And above all, it’s about good food and great people. It’s knowing that we’re all there for each other with warmth, support, and encouragement.