Friday, August 3, 2012 15th Year Anniversary

As many of you know, I’m an Allstar Brand Ambassador for What that means is… I volunteer for a program of AR members along with other members around the US. In a monthly newsletter we are given assignments,  preparing, photographing and reviewing recipes. We also get to test products of site sponsors. I’m enjoying the program as I’m surrounded with like minded people who love to cook, bake and talk about food.

A few months ago I received an email inviting me to attend AR 15th Anniversary Celebration on Thursday July 26th- Saturday 28th! I could hardly believe it, as I have always wanted to visit Seattle and here was my chance. Also to get the chance to visit AR in person was so exciting. Boy, was I in for a treat!

Since I've never been to Seattle I decided to extend my trip and bring my husband (Kevin) along. We arrived Monday, a few days to explore Seattle before the AR events. We checked into our hotel (The Inn at the Washington Athletic Club), which was in a perfect location to everything Seattle. We stayed long enough to drop off our luggage in the room and headed out again. First on our list to see was Pikes Place Market.
--> This market is HUGE! It’s our kind of museum with all the beautiful stands of fresh seafood, fruit and vegetables, and the beautiful flowers. 
After walking around we worked up an appetite for lunch. I had done my research and got a lot of recommendations on where to eat. We had lunch at the Steelhead Diner at the Pikes Place Market and it did not disappoint.
with Port Soaked Cherries, Smoky Almond ~ Rosemary Brown Butter, & Creamy Hominy Polenta
with Crispy Parsley & Sauce Louis

--> My restaurant  list was long but I will tell you we managed to cross off most of them.   Here is where we went and what we had.

Matt's in the Market
 Kevin's said this was his favorite meal EVER!  Beef tenderloin, yukon gold potato puree, kale, wild mushrooms, demi glaze and marrow butter.  Kevin let me have a small bite and it was crazy good!

I had halibut with a corn broth.  It was delicious, the fish was so fresh.
 This was the view outside the window at Matt's.

 Serious Pie  We had no idea what to order as all the pizza's sounded good.  So we asked the waiter to order us his favorite.    It was clams, house pancetta, chilies, lemon thyme and it was seriously yummy!
Crème Caramel French Toast - pear, caramel, fresh strawberries and pecan butter

‘Eggs Charcutieres’ with Rustic Duck Terrine \and Veal Shallot Pan Sauce

As you can see we both LOVED our breakfast.  Kevin didn't really lick his plate, but he wanted to!
 THE original Starbuck!
There is truely a Starbucks on every corner in Seattle.
Salumi - This was a tiny little place that you will miss if you didn't know where to find it.  Also there is a line outside the door, be prepared to have a 30 minute wait.  We had heard  about Salumi and that it was run by the Batali family (Mario's Dad and Sister).  We ordered two sandwiches, the salumi and the Porchetta.  The Porchetta was  tender, juicy pork, and very yummy.  We ate it so fast we forgot to take a picture.  This is a picture of the salami sandwich, also very good but if you had to pick one order the Porchetta it was amazing.
When you order pancakes or french toast here you get to go to the fruit bar.  YUM!
I know we ate a lot BUT we walked all of Seattle.  In Seattle you are either walking up a hill or down, my legs are still sore!  Below are a few of the sights, what a fun city.
The Duck-land and water tour

Kerry Park-Queen Anne Neighborhood-Beautiful View
Here is the Space Needle.  We didn't go up in it as we just ran out of time.  I hate when that happens!
               We spent one day on a Bon Vivant wine tour.  Had a wonderful day visiting a few different wineries with a few other couples and drank some (a lot) really good wine. 
We didn't go up in the space needle but saw many times from a distance.  Okay enough with our time in Seattle and on to why I was there, Allrecipes 15th Anniversary.

Thursday evening began with a tour of AR office space, which was located in the heart of downtown on Pine Street. Right away you realize that the employees love working there, a lot! As we were touring their work space, they explained that they had been celebrating all week, and this particular day they had just had a putt putt tournament throughout the office. You could tell they had a fun working environment, they even have a disco ball!  After the tour came the Meet and Greet Happy Hour party! It was very relaxed as all of us ambassadors got to meet each other, most of us, for the first time.

I was amazed when the AR employees came up to me and said, “you must be Dawn”, they already knew me (us)! I even got to meet the President of AR, Lisa Sharples. They all made us feel important for our part in the Ambassador program.

Both the Happy Hour and the Anniversary Party was catered by a personal chef Karen Binkhorst. She and her staff did a fantastic job in the AR Kitchen. The appetizers were all delicious!

Friday, we arrived at AR at 8 AM and had breakfast before starting our day. After getting our fill we were given an introduction to AllRecipes by William. His entire job is devoted to making AR the happy place to work.  How cool is  his job! The AllRecipes culture is is about acceptance, inclusiveness, caring, to be humble and allowing each employee and member the right to be an individual.  What a great place to work!

Next to come was a presentation showing an in depth look at AR. We then broke off into workshops and focus groups such as social media info (talked about how they use twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, apps, ect.), video tips on filming and photography (they even talked about where to get some photography equiptment at a good price), business Intelligence (talked about the performance stats that they check everyday to keep them the #1 food site). At 3:30 we all headed back to the hotel to get freshened up for the big celebration party along with all the (happy) employees.  Here's a few pictures of the party.  It was a good time had by all!
THANK YOU AR for giving me this opportunity to celebrate 15 years with you and the Allstar Ambassadors.


  1. Very nice. I enjoyed reading very much.

  2. Great post, Dawn! I really enjoyed reading it, and the pics are awesome! Thank you for sharing!!

  3. It was so nice to finally meet you in person Dawn! I loved going through your post and seeing and the wonderful places you and your husband visited. There is so much amazing food in Seattle! Thanks for sharing your visit :)

  4. Wow amazing recipes style ,I like your work ,best sharing .