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The Future of Taste

Blog

Festival Planners and Panelists On What They're Most Looking Forward to During Taste Talks

Sarah Zorn

It’s hard to believe it, but after months and months of planning, Taste Talks Chicago is finally here! So provided they’re able to take a breather and simply relax and enjoy the event (yeah right!) we spoke to a trio of top staffers — as well as a few festival participants — about what they’re most looking forward to seeing (and eating) during Taste Talks this year.

Daniel Stedman, Founder of Northside Media

What panels/events/dinners are you most looking forward to during Taste Talks this year, and why?  

I'm really excited to see the Canadian chefs, Matty Matheson and John and Connie from Charcut, as they are all personal friends. Also really excited to hear Arlene Stein and her panel about How to Entertain. I'm not a great entertainer and frankly, I think I can learn a lot from Arlene Charles Joly, Elana Green, Andrew Zimmerman, Rachel Crowl and Matthias Merges.

What dish are you most excited to eat at the All-Star BBQ?

For the BBQ, I'm excited to see how Paul Kahan and Marc Vetri take on short ribs !!! Yow!

 

Dana Cree, Panelist on Free-Styling with Ice Cream Desserts

What are you most looking forward to during Taste Talks this year, and why?

I'm most looking forward to meeting Tim and Jeni, and seeing Jessie again. When we work so hard in our kitchens, we often don't get to spend time with the others we respect and admire in our fields, we have to stalk them on Instagram and follow their careers from afar. Taste Talks has curated an incredible group of people, and  brought me the opportunity to spend an afternoon with three people who I admire greatly.

 

Kelsey Kreiling, Co-Producer of Taste Talks Chicago

What panels/events/dinners are you most looking forward to during Taste Talks this year, and why?

I'm really excited to see what the Mother of Pearl dinner will be like. We have some incredible chefs lined up and I know they'll do something spectacular. I'm also excited to see "The Greener Path" panel on Saturday with Jessica Murnane, Amanda Cohen, Heather Crosby, Anne Owen and Chris Pappas. They all have different approaches to plant-based eating and (even as an omnivore) I love learning more about that world.

What dish are you most excited to eat at the All-Star BBQ?

Well, I know that Charcut's John and Connie DeSousa are making a Bison Heart dish that has an insane amount of prep behind it, so I'm excited to see what they're cooking up! I'm also a huge pie fan, so I'll be hanging out by the Bang Bang Pie Popup to support No Kid Hungry.

 

Johanna Lowe, Panelist on Learn from the Masters: Food Photography & Storytelling Techniques

What panels/events/dinners are you most looking forward to during Taste Talks this year (besides your own) and why?

The Chef’s Dinner, as a chance to relax, wind down after the weekend. Also Learn from the Masters: How to Entertain, because the panel is amazing and I hope to learn from them in order to bring ideas to my own business.

What dish are you most excited to eat at the All-Star BBQ?

Lee Wollen and Beth Eccles’ Grilled Fall Squash with blood Sausage and Ricotta.

 

Mallory Ulaszek-Tews, Co-Producer of Taste Talks Chicago

What panels/events/dinners are you most looking forward to during Taste Talks this year, and why? 

I am looking forward to the Small Distillers & Great Barkeep's mash up as I love a good custom cocktail. Have to admit I am most excited to see Matty Matheson's Vice Munchies screening. He seems to be the most wild and fun person and I can't wait to see the man behind the Instagram handle @mattydeathbro.

What dish are you most excited to eat at the All-Star BBQ?

I am partial to goat and lamb so definitely looking forward to what Matty and Nick Collela from Great Lakes Tattoo dream up, as well as what Jason Hammel and Paul McGee have in store for us!

 

Kate Bernot, Moderator of In Cider Spirit

What panels/events/dinners are you most looking forward to during Taste Talks this year (besides your own) and why?

I'm very much looking forward to the photography and storytelling panel featuring Huge Galdones, Johanna Lowe and Ellen Malloy. As a journalist, it's my job to tell food and beverage stories in a compelling way, and these three are masters of it. Hopefully I can pick up some of their secrets. I'm also excited for the Small Distillers and Barkeeps panel featuring Rhine Hall, Letherbee and Chicago Distilling. Those three make some of the tastiest spirits in town and are also all wonderful, entertaining people who are working to advance Chicago's reputation as one of the best drinking cities in the country. 

What dish are you most excited to eat at the All-Star BBQ?

The entire menu makes my mouth water; it's great to see such a variety of ingredients and chefs. I'll stand in line for hours for Paul Kahan short ribs, as well as anything Paul McGee whips up. Will I still save room for Mindy Segal's s'mores? Yes. Yes I will. 

Taste Talks Food & Drink hits Chicago October 3-5, 2014. See the full schedule and buy tickets here.