Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Gluten Free Expo Part Two

The first show I went to was in 2012 and it was held at the Westin in Lombard. I had so much emotion, I was overwhelmed, excited, amazed at all the products, and the out pouring of people who wanted to talk about being a Celiac. I had met Jen the gal in charge of the event at one of her cooking classes she does in the Northwest Suburbs of Chicago. She was so friendly and so concerned about each of the people who attended her seminars. She was warm and welcoming, and made me look forward to classes to learn new recipes and hear stores of other people who went through similar diagnosis nightmares like me. She mentioned that if we signed up for her emails, we could get a chance to volunteer at the show, I was in! So This year I read all my emails waiting for the one that said "We need volunteers" I was set.

The show was held in the Schaumburg Renaissance Convention Center this year. It was much larger than last years, and was expected to draw in 7,500 people to come to the show. There were 150 vendors ranging from food products, beer, vitamins, local bakeries, make-up, bloggers and vendors with GF clothing.

Last year, my mom and brother came with, they were interested in many of the products, especially since you could sample so many of them. So this year they definitely wanted to come again, my boyfriend and my brothers girlfriend also came with. Each of them found items they really enjoyed. There were several baking mixes they twisted my arm and got me to purchase to make at home. I'm looking forward to replicating some of the recipes, and seeing what else I can make. Since I am the only one who needs to eat gluten free, I appreciate their opinions that the items taste comparable to the rest of the food they eat.

We got to the show about 12:45 we left about 3:30, it was crowded, but we still got to talk to many of the vendors, and find out where locally they are sold, and how many of them are moving into the Chicago area market, and are going to be sold at my local Mariano's!

I was able to get a cute GF T-Shirt from Celiac and the Beast, and a GF cookbook by one of my favorite bloggers, Gluten Free on a Shoe String, they had the book on special for the weekend.


My boyfriend said it was like a day of trick-or-treating for Celiac's. We got lots of brochures on products, information on meetings in the area, and samples of products. There were a lot of vendors who had samples to taste on the spot, but I could only eat so much! I should have started to fast about a week earlier to be able to try everything.

Some of the items we tasted on the spot were -

Rose's Wheat-free Bakery was sampling their GF Dairy Free Cheesecake.
Sweet Ali's had Brownies, pound cake, chocolate cupcakes, and their salted caramel cupcakes.
Rudi's was making grilled cheese sandwiches.
Udi's had their new pizza's for sample, and their soft baked cookies.
Kinnikinnick had a bunch of items, including their new bagels, cinnamon donuts, K-Kritters, and K-toos.
Glutenfreeda had their new hot pocket like sandwiches for taste.
Local Oven was sampling their different bead options (soon to be the bun at Fudruckers!)
Conte's Pasta Co had their pizza, perogi's, and gnocchi for sampling.
Pinstripes was sampling their lasagna that they serve at their restaurants.
Hail Merry had all four flavors of their macaroons for tasting, as well as some of their cakes.
Whole Foods had a apple tart that they said is available in their Gluten Free Bake house selection.
Two Fat Guys Gourmet Sauces were tasting their BBQ Sauces on cocktail hot dogs.
San-J had their sauces all on display and were sampling the sauces and salad dressings on their rice crackers.
Chebe Products were making their bread sticks in bite size portions.
Kiki's Simply Awesome, had spinach feta pockets.
Bard's Tale, Brunehaut, New Planet, and Greens were tasting their beers, in the beer garden.

No comments:

Post a Comment