I want to tell you all about fantastic foods and that starts with Culinary Concepts! Now my employer, this local restaurant group based in Southwest Florida, serves some of my favorite food around town and everyone should try it.
We operate Chops City Grill, Pazzo! Cucina Italiana, Yabba Island Grill and Blue Water Bistro!
Previously, I worked as a food writer for The News-Press Media Group in Southwest Florida, which means I'm the kind of person who goes window shopping at Fresh Market or the Skinny Pantry or Sur La Table or Williams Sonoma.
I started at the News-Press in the spring of 2010 as a business reporter.
I studied journalism at the University of Florida, with a focus on multimedia, but have always had a passion for food...
As a little girl I remember my Cuban grandmother's papaya milk shakes, her frijoles colorado and the way she whipped up egg whites and cooked them over a flame on her gas stove to make meringue.
In college, my food interests manifested in other ways. I focused my research on media coverage of local and organic foods and things like guerrilla gardening. I'd invite friends and neighbors over for elaborate dinners and potlucks. In graduate school, I got a plot at the local community garden and grew everything from swiss chard and kale to watermelon and butternut squash.
For my undergraduate studies, I spent five months in Paris with short trips to Avignon, St. Paul de Vence, Nice, and Normandy. I also traveled to Madrid, Barcelona, La Costa Brava, London, and Venice. Whether my stop was in the Marais in Paris or in Madrid, my personal travels were built around the food, sampling regional dishes such as sopa de caracol, a soup with snails cooked in a mint broth, or paella Valenciana and champagne sangria on La Costa Brava. I ate at the oldest restaurant in the world, El Sobrino de Botin in Madrid, and at a restaurant in Barcelona where chefs in training serve their best.
For our honeymoon, my husband, Jordan, and I embarked on a month-long exploration of foods and gardens and estates at various cities along the eastern U.S. from Naples, Florida to Bar Harbor, Maine. Some of the highlights: seeing Thomas Jefferson's gardens at Monticello and buying heirloom seeds, picking wild blueberries and making blueberry pancakes in New Hampshire with friends, and enjoying a lobster boil on the pebble beaches of Eggemoggin Reach in Maine.