Catching Some of the “Rising Stars” of Gluten Free- My First Food Expo Experience

By Mick Brown

#MickBrown #EsterMTrevino

To set the record straight- I am not TasteeBQ, the fictional Superhero. Just the Author. I wore the glasses to catch his spirit. Here with Ester M. Trevino the young, up and coming Author of The Gluten Conundrum.

 

There’s no Business like Show Business… Especially when it comes to Gluten Free (GF) Food Shows. I am primarily a Caterer and am new to the Spice Manufacturing Industry. My Brand is barely a year old. Last weekend we had the opportunity to Exhibit at our very first GF Expo. Perhaps, I should thank Indiegogo. Our current Indie Campaign has yet to rain major money on me. However, maybe it’s existence brought us to the attention of the Show organizers. The Gluten Free Food Allergy Fest is sponsored by Living Without Magazine. Held in San Diego, I got to encounter some of the most exciting new “Stars” of the growing GF Food Scene.

Before it all happened, I was originally going to spend about a month in preparation for our very first Gluten Free Expo in Pasadena, on June 7th. I started the Indiegogo Campaign to make new friends and maybe raise a few funds. At least let a couple of people know we would be at the June Expo. Then I get a call from Shelia, the Coordinator of the San Diego event. She said “I read about you online. We had a last minute cancellation, and think you should be there.” Then she sent me a video of her appearance on the Indianapolis Episode of  the “Tasty Freedom” video series, hosted by Jaquy Y.

#SheliaCafferty #GlutenFree3 #GlutenFreeFoodAllergyFest

Before the Show. Shelia Cafferty is the Event Coordinator for 3 Gluten Free Food Allergy Fests, nationwide. She has also recently become part of “The Gluten Free Three” Consultants for Amy Levy Public Relations, based in Los Angeles.

Note- this was a mere 8 days before the opening day of the Show. I had never done a professional public Food Expo before. So I sought the advice of a seasoned colleague from New York, Barbara. At first she was congratulatory, then emails got sort of quiet. I soon learned on Facebook that she had been preparing to do a live Gluten Free Cooking Demonstration on the Bronx 12 Morning TV News. Barbara did come through with much needed help. It was Barbara who first introduced me to the “Tasty Freedom” video series, as she appeared in the Brooklyn Episode with Jaquy Y.

#BarbaraCallanan #Bronx12News #GoldenAppleRule

Barbara Callanan on Bronx 12 TV Morning News. She is also an established Gluten Free Expert with Consult JCB in New York. She and her sister Joan founded “The Golden Apple Rule“, an educational Anti-Bullying initiative to help Kids with Allergies experience less grief in Schools.

 

At the show, I was fortunate to meet Ed from Keil’s Fresh Food Markets, a growing San Diego chain that is poised to give Vons and Walmart a run for their money. Even more fortunately- Keil’s decided to give our new Brand a try, and bought a couple of cases. The product will be available in San Diego at the Keil’s Gluten Free Spring Fling Tent Event on May 17th. They are the only big Retail Store (I know of) that makes such a concerted effort to reach out to Gluten Free customers, advertising over 1500 Gluten Free Products in the stores and online. Because they give big discounts, our challenge will be to “Go Big or Go Home”.  I’ll do my best to stick with the former.

#EdYankovich #KeilsSanDiego  #MickBrown

With Ed Yankovich of Keil’s Fresh Food Markets at the Gluten Free Food Allergy Fest in San Diego. They will be the first store to offer HEROIC! to the San Diego public at Keil’s Gluten Free Spring Fling Tent Event on May 17th. Go there for a chance to taste it for yourself.

 

In the middle of the first day I got to meet Ester from The Gluten Conundrum [pictured above]. The young Blogger is branching out this year, in her quest for the best GF Products. She also has great taste in Grilled Steak Salads. I can see Ester following in the footsteps of Jaquy Y., a former producer at the Food Network- now a Chef, Food Consultant, and the Host of “Tasty Freedom”. It turns out Jaquy flew into San Diego from Vietnam in order to present at the Gluten Free Food Allergy Fest. In fact, I watched her give a couple of Lecture/Cooking Demonstrations from my booth, which happened to be next to the Main Stage. However, for two full days I never did have the chance to meet Jaquy Y.

#JaquyYngvason #MickBrown #Heroic! #CaliforniaGoldbbqrubs #tastyfreedom

Jaquy Yngvason is one to watch. Her Recipes are not just for people with Celiac’s Disease, but for anyone into Healthier and Delicious Eating. This Chef and Host of the “Tasty Freedom” videos has such a bright future. Wish I had Shades.

Of course that changed. Shelia to the rescue… At the very end of Day 2 the Event Coordinator finally got to taste my product. Shelia also reached out to Jaquy to arrange a personal visit. Upon meeting her, Jaquy was just as warm and exuberant as she is in her “Tasty Freedom” video series. I won’t speak for her on how she feels about my new product HEROIC!, which is an All Natural Superfood BBQ Rub. Let’s just say she took a few bottles back to New York, asking what she can do to help. Actually, she already has been an inspiration. It was truly a pleasure to meet Jaquy Y. If she doesn’t have a show on the Food Network soon, hopefully someone will help her launch a new Gluten Free Food Network. Until next time, Eat and Be Well.

Update 5/8/14– Since finishing the article, I just heard from Jaquy on Facebook. She says “Was great meeting you at the Expo!! Your product has already made it into a couple savory cocktails and many salads… Amazing rub, you must try!!”

There you go. Now I am an even bigger Jaquy Y. fan!

Mick Brown is a Food Blogger/Purveyor based in Los Angeles, with over 30 years BBQ and Grilling experience. Aside from Catering, his passions are creating Easy Grilling Recipes and searching for the World’s Best Flavors. General Manager of Tastee BQ Grilling Co. and the new California Gold BBQ Rubs. He is also author of web serial blog “The Adventures of Tastee BQ.” Current Indiegogo Campaign is Get HEROIC! to the Gluten Free Expo- June 7th in Pasadena, CA. Email- Mick@TasteeBQ.com.

LINKS

Gluten Free Food Allergy Fest by Living Without Magazine http://www.glutenfreefoodallergyfest.com/

Tasty Freedom Video Series on YouTube (Grab a Gluten Free Beer and Enjoy!) https://www.youtube.com/user/SalsaViking

Tasty Freedom Website  http://www.tastyfreedom.com/

Keil’s Fresh Food Markets  http://www.keils.com/glutenfree

Keil’s Gluten Free Spring Fling Tent Event May 17th in San Diego  http://www.keils.com/events

The Gluten Conundrum Website  http://theglutenconundrum.com/

The Gluten Conundrum on Facebook  https://www.facebook.com/TheGlutenConundrum

Barbara Callanan on Bronx 12 TV News http://bronx.news12.com/news/food-for-thought-chef-barbara-callanan-offers-gluten-free-tips-1.7841441

Barbara Callanan on Tasty Freedom https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=-4HkAh7Fsm

The Golden Apple Rule (Anti-Bullying Campaign)  http://www.consultjcb.com/the-golden-apple-rule.htm

Shelia Cafferty on Tasty Freedom  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Jw8yh3n_pOc&list=UUdl-rjQJFZ0WQlyreIM4lvQ

The Gluten Free Three c/o Amy Levy Public Relations  http://www.amylevypr.com/#!gluten-free-marketing/cgm5

California Gold BBQ Rubs (Where to Buy) http://www.californiagoldrub.com/products.html

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Should I Stay or “Indiegogo” to the Gluten Free Expo?

#heroicbbqpopcorn

HEROIC! BBQ Popcorn with and without Nuts. Tasting held at Los Angeles Economic Development Committee Meeting in March 2014.

Some will say “It’s about time”, but how do you sum up your life on one page?  Still, I finally got around to adding an About (me) Page for BBQ Catering Confidential. It is still a work in progress, but is good for now. In other news, we recently decided to have a go at Indiegogo.

Indiegogo what? Some may ask. [It was me (asking) about six months ago]. Of course, most people have heard of Kickstarter.com, where Celebs go for help funding their movie projects. Indiegogo is supposedly the second most popular crowd funding site. It gives campaigns the advantage of collecting any pledged funds, even if they fall short of the specified goal. If anything, Indiegogo may be good practice in case we decide to do the big Kickstarter show in the future.

#heroicbbqrub

HEROIC! comes in 2.5 oz. and 5 oz. bottles. Popcorn not included.

Here,  I should quash any rumors that the Rub company is in trouble. Au Contraire, it is just getting started. We plan to be in more Retailers than ever by Memorial Day 2014. However, it is true that when launching a Brand, the start-up costs keep rolling in. Long before you have a chance to sell the thousands to units to cover them.

The Gluten Free Expo is a great opportunity that I just heard about. Having never been to a Gluten Free Expo, or sponsored a booth, it will  be a learning experience. Will definitely let you know how it goes. However, the event isn’t until June 7th, which may be too close to the 4th of July to add many more Retailers. As much as I’d like to go, the current budget is better spent on Memorial Day promotions. Big Retail Contacts made in June may not become active until Summer 2015.

Enough “Business Strategy” session. Anyway, I will keep you posted on the Indiegogo Campaign. If nothing else, it is a good opportunity to present what the company is all about on one page. And it led to us creating our first professional video, starring yours truly. Check it out when you have a chance.

Also, we got a chance to create a new line of swag from American Apparel that (for now) is exclusively available through the campaign. Also, there are Gift Certificates for Catering and BBQ Cooking Lessons from Tastee BQ Grilling Co.

#heroicmerchandise

Campaign Perks include Long Sleeve T-shirts from American Apparel, Aprons and unique BB Caps.

I am still playing catch-up, having recently returned from a trip to Chicago. Will get you dispatches from there soon. The overall report is that Food is just fine in the Windy City. Along with making some contacts and visiting family, I got to come face-to-face with an important piece of my family Food History. They showed me a 1956 ad from my father’s yearbook promoting the Friendly BBQ Cafe owned by my Grandfather in Longview, TX. You can see it and more on the new About page. Until next time, Eat and Be Well.

Mick Brown is a Food Blogger/Purveyor based in Los Angeles, with over 30 years BBQ and Grilling experience. Aside from Catering, his passions are creating Easy Grilling Recipes and searching for the World’s Best Flavors. General Manager of Tastee BQ Grilling Co. and the new California Gold BBQ Rubs. He is also author of web serial blog “The Adventures of Tastee BQ.” Email- Mick@TasteeBQ.com

LINKS

Indiegogo Campaign- https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/get-heroic-to-the-gluten-free-expo-june-7th-in-pasadena-ca/x/6670233

Website http://www.californiagoldrub.com/

Blog http://cagoldbbqrecipes.wordpress.com/

Recipes http://californiagoldbbqrubrecipes.wordpress.com/

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/CaliforniaGoldBBQRubs

HEROIC! Product Press Release http://www.prlog.org/12289136-california-gold-bbq-rubs-introduces-the-worlds-1st-heroic-gluten-free-bbq-rub-with-superfoods.html