Blend Retreat – The FOOD!

Hi everyone! If you follow me on Twitter or Instagram, you probably saw a lot of this this weekend:

Utah

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I spent the weekend in BEAUTIFUL Park City, Utah attending Blend Retreat. I expect to dedicate quite a few posts this and next week to recapping the event and sharing what I learned about all the great sponsors {and my fellow bloggers!}, but today I wanted to focus on one aspect I think you all will love: the FOOD!

The retreat included several hosted meals between Friday and Sunday: a Cocktail Hour and Dinner on Friday, and breakfast on Saturday and Sunday mornings. There were also a few Snack Breaks throughout the weekend, which consisted of some of the event’s sponsors setting out goodies for us to sample. All the food was great {not to mention healthy!}, and I was super excited to learn a lot about some new-to-me brands!

FRIDAY
Snack Break sponsored by Justin’s Nut Butter & Attune Foods

After Carly and I arrived in Salt Lake City, we met up with Becky, who drove us to the Hyatt Escala Lodge. Soon after checking in {and freaking out at how much SWAG we got!} we headed to the first Snack Break of the weekend.

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I was pretty hungry at this point, haha, and had about 20 million graham crackers and entirely too much nut butter. Justin’s was sampling their regular and maple almond butters, regular and honey peanut butters, and chocolate hazelnut butter to spread on Erewhon graham crackers. My favorite combo was definitely graham crackers + honey peanut butter, but I know from experience that the maple almond butter is good enough to eat from a spoon!

photo cred: Becky at Olives n’ Wine

Becky, Carly and me!

Cocktail Hour sponsored by Silk

Next up, we all changed out of our travel clothes and into some nicer ‘duds.

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The hotel put out a pretty amazing spread of appetizers, including crudites with ranch or cilantro-lime dressing, AMAAAZING spring rolls with Thai peanut sauce, and spicy black bean cakes. If I didn’t know that we had a dinner immediately following, I totally would have just eaten this as dinner! It was all delicious.

photo cred: Carly at Snack Therapy

The only picture I think I have of me dressed up, oops! Carly and I traveled from Sacramento together, and can I just say that I couldn’t have asked for a better travel buddy? It takes a special person to keep things light and entertaining when you’re flying home from a fun weekend on like 2 hours of sleep ๐Ÿ˜‰

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ANYWAY, back to cocktail hour! The restaurant at the Hyatt Escala Lodge is pretty gorgeous.

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On the Cocktail menu were three specialty Silkology drinks, all featuring Silk Almond Milk. Being a ginger lover, I of course went for the Ginger Refresher: rum, ginger liqueur, almond milk, bitters, agave & mint. It was one of the most interesting cocktails I’ve ever had, that’s for sure! But it all somehow seemed to work.

There was also a photo booth!

photo cred: our 4th roomie, Arlene

Dinner + Dessert

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Salads!

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Entrees!

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I ended up with (clockwise, from top): mixed greens with Chobani dressing, grilled veggies, Carrot Ginger soup, herb roasted chicken and fingerling potatoes, and a bulgur salad. And I later snuck a bite of Brittney’s quinoa cake, which was so. good.

I loved chatting over dinner with Debra from Miles to Run, and Gena who owns and operates Bake All the Things down in Southern California!

The dessert offerings were also pretty amazing:

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Panna cotta featuring Chobani

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Apple Cobbler

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And.. Berry Tart! Which is what I went with ๐Ÿ™‚

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Obviously I couldn’t wait to dig in before taking a picture ๐Ÿ˜‰

SATURDAY

Breakfast sponsored by The Laughing Cow and Muesli Fusion

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On the menu for breakfast was delicious bagels and Smooth Sensations Cream Cheese Spread from The Laughing Cow. I loved the savory flavors – chive/onion and garden vegetables!

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I went back to try a little bowl of muesli from Muesli Fusion and Silk almond milk. I had never tried muesli before and I may be hooked – it is basically granola without all the added sugar and fat!

Snack Break with Onnit Labs and Miss USA

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Here are Orlando and Whitney of Onnit Labs sampling their nut butters and hemp protein products. They were serving up their walnut-almond-cashew trilogy butter and macadamia cacao cherry trilogy butter on rice cakes, and blending up chocolate hemp protein shakes!

Oh, and you may have noticed that Whitney also happens to be Miss United States 2012! I had a lot of time to get to know her this weekend at dinner on Friday and out on the town Saturday night and she is seriously the full package – healthy, happy, fit, and hilarious! Um and obviously she is gorgeous ๐Ÿ˜‰ Can’t wait to check out her podcast Women Against Mediocrity.

SUNDAY
Breakfast sponsored by Chobani

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Chobani was the sponsor of the entire retreat, so their products were sprinkled throughout most of our meals, but they got their moment to shine on Sunday morning!

In addition to fruit, they had a yogurt/granola/oatmeal station and pancakes made with Chobani in them.

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The pancakes were so good! Greek yogurt really made them light and fluffy. I also was super excited to FINALLY be able to try Chobani Flip, but I accidentally left it in our hotel room’s fridge! D’oh.

There was also an Omelet Bar, which I attempted to wait in line for but gave up after 10 minutes of waiting. I just went back for more yogurt and fixin’s!

So as you can see, I definitely did not starve this weekend!

A super special thank you to Lindsay, Katie and Janetha for again hosting this great event. It was so lovely meeting you all in person, and you did a great job!

Stay tuned for more updates in the coming weeks, including details about all the cool companies at the retreat, all the fitness events {AKA a really beautiful hike}, and a post about where we stayed and what to do in Park City!

Have you ever been to a blogging conference, or another kind of professional retreat?

Did we meet at Blend?? Leave me a comment so we can stay in touch, and feel free to ‘borrow’ my photos!

31 thoughts on “Blend Retreat – The FOOD!

    • Seriously, I should have asked what was in the bean cakes, I want to recreate them at home! And yes yes yes, the people. Hate that I’m back in reality, where not everyone takes pictures of EVERYTHING they eat ๐Ÿ˜›

  1. You took some awesome pictures! I follow Carly and Becky on Instagram so I was stalking the crap out of everyone’s Blend photos (I’ll have to add you to my Instagram-ing follows). I have already decided that somehow I am getting myself to Blend next year, it just looks like such a blast! And I am going on a Professional retreat with my coworkers in two weeks, should be an interesting adventure!

  2. That looks like such an amazing experience and the food looks beyond delish! Thanks for sharing and hopefully ill find one of those soon! I still am hoping to find those Chobani flips somewhere.

  3. HOLY COW! Food Porn Central. Everything looks absolutely delectable and like you had an awesome time! I may have (most definitely) stalked your twitter and liked an absurd amount of pictures, but it all just looked so fun, I couldn’t help myself!

    • It was so fun, I loved being in the company of people who also take pictures of EVERYTHING they eat haha! I’m glad you got to live vicariously through us, wish you could have been there!

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