33K Members – Northern Virginia Foodies Holds 2019 Kickoff Celebration

33K Members – Northern Virginia Foodies Holds 2019 Kickoff Celebration

Black Olive Bar and Grill at the National Conference Center played host to over 200 attendees for the Northern Virginia Foodies recent 2019 Kickoff Celebration.

Guests dined on a Latin-Asian fusion menu that showcased the talents of the National’s Executive Chef, Peruvian-born Frank Estremera, and his team.

The National Conference Center's Exectuive Chef Frank Estremera

The National Conference Center’s Executive Chef Frank Estremera

Culinary highlights included a whole tuna displayed, filleted, and served as sashimi with ginger wasabi cotton candy; Pork Belly Bao Guao; Vegan Ceviche; and Duck Confit Potato Salad. For dessert, guests were treated to a build-your-own s’mores bar and a thrilling display of chocolate sculptures, assorted truffles and other confections from local chocolatier, the Conche.

The Northern Virginia Foodies Group is a Facebook community of over 33,000 self-proclaimed epicureans, founded by local photographer Andrew Sample known for his dynamic approach to photographing food.  Sample’s work has been featured nationwide. The group is open to “anyone who loves food.”

“To see this group come as far as it has, with over 33,000 members, events, meetups – it is amazing,” said Sample. “I am so grateful for how far we have come and all of the amazing things we have planned. There are happy hours, mixers, supper clubs, contests, cook-offs, competitions.”

Dessert display by the Conche (1)

Dessert display by the Conche

“The National was thrilled to introduce the Foodies group to a hyperlocal, creative and diverse menu,” said Katie Barchas Wilson, Community Outreach Manager, National Conference Center and West Belmont Place. “We pride ourselves on outstanding execution and top-notch service and are grateful for the opportunity to host such an eclectic and epicurean audience.”

“This event was the first and a huge success. The venue at the conference center was perfect and with Katie’s help it was marketed and organized perfectly,” said Sample.

Nazie Apostolou, Marketing Coordinator as DC Prime; Pepper Gonzales, Chep de Cuisine at DC Prime, Andrew Sample

Wilson and Sample agreed that the conference center will likely host many more Northern Virginia Foodies events.

Carmen Felder, AJ Jones, Lance Farquharson

Carmen Felder, AJ Jones, Lance Farquharson

Visit facebook.com/groups/NovaFoodies to request membership.

Photos by Alex Mangione

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Brian Reynolds