Monday, February 7, 2011

Friday Night SlowBowl 2011 Paso Robles California

This past Friday we joined with over 50 of our Slowtravel friends to celebrate "Superbowl weekend" in a now annual event we call "Slowbowl". It is a weekend where we have various themed food competitions called "Smack-downs" and travel to wineries in the Paso Robles area to tour vineyards and taste great local wines. It's a weekend of great reunions, lots of laughter, great food, wine and lots and lots of fun.

It all starts here at the cottage where we meet on Friday night at 6:00 for the
big Smackdown food competition. This years theme is recipes from the 1950's and 1960's.

After leaving Los Angeles mid morning Mike and I have already enjoyed a beautiful drive in sunny 70 degree weather passing acres of rolling green hills, the blue Pacific ocean coast and miles of scenic countryside farmland. Now we are ready to PARTY!

It's wonderful to see fellow slowtraveller friends like Wendy and Rob and hey that's
our wonderful slowbowl Skipper "Shannon" on the right. Slowbowl was her idea several years ago. She is an excellent party organizer.

Rob,Wendy and Shannon

You will often see friends with their laptops, notebooks etc. out. What they are doing is sending photos, blogging or messaging to other slowtravel friends across the U.S., and abroad so that they can be a part of this event too.

Lots of activity in the kitchen where preparations are being made for the food competition judging to take place.Once the judges finish their scoring then it's time to EAT!

There's always a hungry crowd

Here's Sean and Rebecca. I want to stay on her good side, Rebecca is one of this years judges!
We are all so happy that Cindy and Scott are at Slowbowl this year. They came all the way from their home in Alaska. Cindy is a fantastic cook and baker. She filled her suitcase with home made biscotti and paneforte. Mmmm what a treat!

It's getting very exciting as the judges are doing their tasting and scoring

Lots of wine consumed in anticipation!

Here's Chris from New Jersey and Rob from Big Sur.

And from the Bay area it's lovely Sharon, Tracey and Eden.

I wonder if Shannon is trying to bribe our lead Judge Deborah. Deborah came all the way from
Missouri and boy was she glad to escape the snow. We ordered sunshine for our friends from out of state.

There's always lots of great wine for these slowtravellers.

Okay ladies who will be the big winners tonight?

Recipe books from the 1950's are among the many prizes...

The smackdown is divided into different categories. Here are some entries for "appetizers".

Palmas cheese squares were amazing...

So was Kims cheese fondue.

Everyone gathers now to hear the judges decisions.

In the jello category there are three contestants.

Marcia made a family favorite cranberry jello mold

The upper lime jello mold was my entry. It's made with mini marshmellos, cream cheese, whipped cream, lime jello of course, coconut, pecans, pineapples and a few other things. The far
right entry was by Sharon. All three were authentic recipes from the 1960's.
Well the big surprise was when they announced who the winner was. Guess who?

That was pretty funny and my prize was an authentic 1950's recipe book featuring foods made with "Sour Cream"

Other lucky winners were Marta from Seattle

She made cocktail meatballs with a grape jelly sauce and some other ingredient. They were excellent.

Here you can see Judge Deborah taking great care in her point system for calculating a winner.

It was exciting to hear who had won for each category

And the winner for salads is EDEN!

Her bean salad was delicious and a classic.
Taking the prize for main dish was Wendy.

Her "meatloaf" was a classic and she even made her own catsups in two different flavors to go with her dish. Both sauces were great.

The grand prize winner for best overall recipe for the 1950's-60's went to Nancy
for her great "Harvey Wallbanger"cake.

Here is Nancy graciously accepting her grand prize of several original booklets of recipes from the 1950's.

Her cake was really delicious!As the evening grew into the wee hours a very funny game of BlackJack was being played.

We think a good amount of wine helps move this game along.

At long last it is time for us to bid farewell to the party.

Afterall we have a big day ahead of us tomorrow. The wine tasting tours begin!


Rebecca said...

Great photos, Barb! And you are always on my good side:)

menehune said...

Great photos - thanks! Looking forward to seeing more. The ideas were very creative - from the start with the 50s-60s theme.

nancyhol said...

Ahh, what fun it was! I was thrilled to win the grand award for my Harvey Wallbanger cake. I am heading over to the recipe thread to post the cake.

Deborah said...

What a great recap of the evening, Barb!
It was wonderful to see you again.
Remember, next business trip to St. Louis, Make sure Mike brings you along and drops you off at my house.

barb cabot said...

Deborah, you made a great judge! What a blast this past weekend was. I'm so happy you were able to come west. Next year hope Dan can come too. Would love to see you in St. Louis, fingers crossed. See you on the boards.

Trekcapri said...

Hi Barb, congratulations to you and the other winners. Thank you so much for writing such a great recap of SlowBowl. It was fun seeing and reading about the great time you all had.

Dawn said...

This has got to be the best way to enjoy the Superbowl, it is 7.55 in the morning here in England and it has made me really hungry.
Congratulations on your winning pudding xx

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