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FNCE 2016

It was my first time attending the annual Food and Nutrition Conference and Expo (FNCE) this year and I'm SO grateful it happened to be hosted in my favorite city Boston! I was able to catch up with family, friends from my hometown and from college, former colleagues, mentors and the most amazing dietitians of our nation!

This is a Kate Moran special at Blue Moon Bagel Cafe. I kid you not. In the heart of Medfield Mass where I grew up, one of Boston's best bakeries provides the most delicious scratch baked goods, sandwiches, soups and salads to the local suburbs. Owners Dan and Linda Freedman have had a line out the door over their 20 years of successful business.

This place is so very dear to my heart. As a fourth generation master baker, Dan taught me all he knows about baking. He'd spend the extra time explaining the science and processes behind his products while I was studying to be an RD in college. I ended up completing a portion of my foodservice dietetic internship there.

Managing the bakery for 4 years was the best decision I made, as I met one of my dearest mentors, implemented a farmers market in town and felt truly a part of the community. The management skills I learned were just the start of my career.

I had the pleasure of spending a few days at home with my family. It was a gorgeous weekend so we went to Nashoba Valley Winery in Bolton, Mass and enjoyed some vino in the sunshine.

When we got back from the vinyard, Mom made fish tacos, homemade cole slaw and refried beans. She has always been the backbone of my culinary creative inspiration. For as long as I can remember, after working a full day herself she would have dinner ready {often from a Bon Appetit Magazine recipe} by the time my Dad got home from work. We've always had a garden with fresh produce and herbs. We got milk delivered from the local dairy and when summers got busy we participated in local Community Supported Agriculture. She taught me local, whole foods are just the beginning to a well balanced diet.

At the conference I met Siggi himself, of Siggi's Dairy. He clearly was so happy to take a picture with me. I was starving after heading into the conference for 8am sessions with only coffee in hand. The expo with FULL of 400+ companies and vendors offering samples but I needed substance. I asked Siggi for a whole container of the seasonal pumpkin flavor and I was immediately rewarded. Also recieved a sweet bag to bring to the farmers market! #winning

My dear Framingham State Coordinated Program alumni friends Kristina and Jane humored me as I got so excited about Farmhouse Cultures gut shots and sauerkraut. Totally nerding out getting excited about probiotics! :)

At night I was invited by Food and Nutrition Magazine to the FNCE Social where I met Academy Spokespeople, Stone Soup bloggers, amazing dietitians and won a juicer!

Another night, I had dinner at Uni Boston. Boston Magazine just ranked it as one of the top 50 restaurants in the city. I may or may not have returned with a friend another night because the mouth watering innovative Asian cuisine was worth another visit. You can't go wrong with literally anything on the menu from hotate scallops to chilled octopus.

After three full days of ten 90 minute education sessions and social networking events with the nations top dietitians, I enjoyed lunch with a college friend and we cheers to the commencement with a New England Bloody Mary at Legal Seafood Harborside, shrimp and all!

After reviewing Legal Seafood Harborside's menu for a solid 30 minutes we both enjoyed a special request of swordfish, local tomatoes, pesto and fresh mozzarella. Hello to-die-for!

Obviously my last stop in my little home town was Blue Moon Bagel Cafe for my favorite breaky sandy. This time I enjoyed roasted portobello mushrooms, egg, avocado, a shmear of homemade pesto on a freshly made multigrain bagel with sunflower seeds and oats. You think you know, but you have no idea how amazing this is!

Flying back into Florida in the midst of a beautiful fall sunset was a lovely way to end a fabulous week! Can't wait to return back to Bean Town for Thanksgiving! Feeling grateful to have the opportunity to attend FNCE, catch up with the many people I was able to see and bring home solid food and nutrition information to share with clients. Feeling blessed!

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