Wow, I don’t know where to start. It’s been over 2 weeks since my WSFC (World Street Food Congress) trip to Singapore, until I finally decided that I owe this blog some nice, thorough post about the whole journey. One thing for sure, I’m overwhelmed. And grateful I had the chance. The hospitality was amazing. By the time I arrived at the airport, they held a signage with my name in it - made me feel like a real VIP, lol. Our hotel was also quite nice, huge king bed all for myself, free shuttle to the WSFC venue and to the airport, etc. As Femina blog contest winner, originally the prize was to attend only the WSFC Jamboree, which covers S$28 entrance + food coupons. But the Makansutra committee contacted me and they gave an additional spot for me to sit as "media", accompanying Rani Djoeir, Femina's representative at the 2-days Dialogue, which would normally cost around S$630 (money-wise), but at the same time.... priceless. Experience-wise. I'm a happy woman. Thanks Seetoh! Thanks Carol!
So in the end it all comes down to the new experience, and I'm going to share some of the highlighted bits:
WSFC 2013: THE DIALOGUE.
It’s definitely my first time attending congress/seminar other than some technical Developer Conference :p. Let me tell you one thing, FOOD CONFERENCE IS WAY BETTER. True, that the speakers don’t really care about the look & feel of their slides. In fact, some looked really ugly & cluttered. But as long as they showcase lots and LOTS of food slideshows enough for me to drool by the time it reaches slide #2… then it’s fine. It's super fine. Heck, Anthony Bourdain didn’t even prepare a single deck, only a video, then for the rest, it’s the lifetime experience that spoke for himself.
YES, I WAS STARSTRUCK. BY CULINARY ICONS ALL AROUND THE WORLD.
Seeing Anthony Bourdain was like seeing Bill Gates back in 2008 when he had Presidential Lecture in JCC Senayan. Starstruck. Gives chill to the bone. And I'm acting all teenager again. True, I don't watch each episodes of "No Reservations" or his new 2013 series, "Parts Unknown". I don't even own a single book that he wrote (well, I'm planning to). But after hearing this guy talk, seeing his gesture when he talks about food, and share his around-the-globe experience, man.... do this man have the most interesting life or what! I could tell that his passion for street-foods is excessively big.
Everything that he says was almost quote-able and I feel like tweeting every bits of line :)
Of course, the Dialogue isn't all about Anthony. There were some real big culinary experts, and I'm proud that Indonesia was represented by these 3 individuals: William Wongso, Bondan Winarno, and Iwan Tjandra. Some other big names including Thailand's very own Iron Chef winner, Ian Kittichai, to the Foodcarts Portland (Oregon, US) co-owner, Brent Burmeister. From Vietnam's most prominent Chef Vo Quoc, to the co-founder of Noma in Denmark (voted THE BEST RESTAURANT IN THE WORLD for 3-times in a row, but moved to 2nd position this year), Claus Meyer. Whoaa... definitely adding 'going to Denmark and eat at Noma' to my bucket list.
Anyway, if you're curious on the whole Dialogue programme, please refer to this.
THAT'S A WRAP!
On a scale of 1 to winning-a-lottery level of happiness, I was super ecstatic. It's not every year I got this kind of special opportunity, and I'm pleased I got the opportunity. Big thanks to Femina, to Unin Rani whose been a really great eating buddy, a friend, and also an advanced swimmer (she swims 80-laps minimum! lol) . To Makansutra, KF Seetoh, Carol, and other committee that made this event possible. To Indonesian contingent, new friends, and all, it was great pleasure to know you guys.
(Okay I started to sound like an award-winning of something; I should really stop.) I'm ending this Part-1 post right here. See you at Part-2: THE FOOD :)
Tweet me @umay