Sunday, May 09, 2004

Gourmet Products Show 2004 Highlights

The 2004 Gourmet Products Show opened today in San Francisco. This trade show launches thousands of new products and is a great opportunity to get a feel for trends, and see some new concepts for the kitchen. There is a lot to take in, three floors of exhibits in fact. Some of the things that caught my eye were:

1. Fondue pots, fondue pots, fondue pots. Are they back in style or what?

2. Bamboo tabletop and kitchenwares. Beautiful and environmentally friendly and in more shapes, textures and styles than I ever imagined.

3. Silicone cookware and bakeware. It's everywhere, and some of it is now safe to use up to 675 degrees, an improvement over the first few pieces I tried that lead to @#$%^! and burned fingers in the kitchen.

4. Ceramic knives. More companies are selling them, they are not cheap but they are sharp and supposedly stay sharp for a year or so. Will they chip and break, are they too light weight or are they the next big thing?

5. Toaster bags. Made of woven fiberglass, these bags let you you neatly melt cheese in toasted sandwiches in a pop-up toaster, toaster oven or microwave oven. And they even brown the bread...

A highlight for me was getting a chance to meet one of my favorite food personalities, Alton Brown and chat with him about many things culinary, including his terrific TV show "Good Eats" and the episode where he baked biscuits with his grandmother, the latest gossip about Rocco DiSpirito and what he thinks of ceramic knives. As usual, more to come!