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Posted by on Dec 29, 2015 in Commentary, Korean Food | 0 comments

Generous tipping pays off in food-story buffet

Generous tipping pays off in food-story buffet

Food writers spend quite a bit of time trying to discover the next new thing — a new recipe to deconstruct, a new restaurant to review, a special event to cover. You have to be open to a new adventure and ready to respond quickly to opportunities. Improve your odds of success by recruiting tipsters.

One such “informant” was a co-worker of my husband’s and on the media list for the Culinary Institute of America. Her forwarding a media advisory started me down the road this fall to the California wine country campus of “the other CIA” to cover an unusual Korean cuisine competition. Most of my best leads take a winding road to my inbox. 

Korea Agro Fisheries & Food Trade Corporation (aka: aT center) hosted a Korean Sensation Culinary Contest in collaboration with the Culinary Institutes of America (CIA) on Oct. 26. This was something the Korean government put a good amount Korean taxpayer money into supporting. I wrote about it at length for ZenKimchi Food Journal:

This dish, called Memphis Seoul sliders, from the Korean Sensation Contest at CIA Greystone in St. Helena, Calif., was one of chef Hooni Kim's favorites, even though it didn't win first place in the contest. (Tammy Quackenbush photo)
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This dish, called Memphis Seoul sliders, from the Korean Sensation Contest at CIA Greystone in St. Helena, Calif., was one of chef Hooni Kim’s favorites, even though it didn’t win first place in the contest. (Tammy Quackenbush photo)

One of my personal highlights from the CIA event was being able to speak privately with Korean-American TV host Marja D. Vongerichten of Kimchi Chronicles, catching up about mutual friends. 

I also absorbed Korean food inspiration from the next generation of American chefs. Dishes in the contest were original and a reflection not only of Korean cuisine but also of each chef’s personality.

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