TLDR: I highly recommend this experience.
I already posted this review on Facebook, I’m posting it on WordPress to share my experience with a wider audience.
The GF Expo in Portland has been sooo nice. Portland is cool too, I’m a fan of cheap, fast, light rails for mass transit as I’d rather not rent a car in a strange city if I don’t have to. When you walk into the Expo you are given a large re-usable shopping bag, and a full loaf of bread…that’s before you even get inside. Inside the hall all of the vendors have free samples, and you can even get a free sample of the bread they gave you at the front door. I wandered around for three hours loading up on carbs and sugar and alcohol. Yes, there were hard cider and gf liquer/liquour booths also giving out samples. After I’d had a bunch of cider samples I needed a waffle covered in whip cream and strawberries.
And everyone was so nice. It was crowded, but people were all quite polite and patient. We had some nice chats with food makers trying to market their creations, very few people ship to Alaska, but Lynne encouraged many of them to contact The Natural Pantry so there’s hope that some of these items will make it up here. The Trader Joes was very blunt and said they were not opening any stores in Alaska and wouldn’t ship there.
At the end of the first day we met the creator of The Celiac Project, a podcast and movie project covering stories, news, and personal experiences of living with celiacs. They held a panel discussion at the end of the day where we learned that the recommended wait time to kiss someone who has eaten gluten is 2-3 hours. We also met one of the creators of Gluten Free Portland, much like our Gluten Free Anchorage group, and they had a wonderful list of all of the restaurants and bakeries that were GF and celiac safe.
Just hangin’ with my buddy Bob at the Expo. 🙂