Thursday, December 31, 2009

The Best and the Rest of 2009

Happy New Year!

I've been mulling the people, places, and things that have made my gluten-free life more bearable this year. I call it the Best and the Rest because, well, there are so many to name -- and they're all great. And yeah. This is a long list.

So in words, links and pictures, I'd like to present the first-ever

Ging Recommends! The Best and The Rest of 2009

I'd like to start with people, and at the top of my list, at 1. and 2. are my "Gluten Free Gurlz" -- Lori Pocock (on left) and Jennifer D. Harris (aka JGF).

These women have been such a wonderful addition to my life. I've really gotten to know them this year, and we've had great times at the Atlanta Gluten-Free Vendor Fair, and at brunch at the Four Seasons. And other places in between.

But the best of 2009 starts with these two GF friends. And OH, the things we have planned for 2010!

And trust me, folks, you're going to be hearing A LOT about and from Jennifer Harris in 2010.

Jennifer is also the GF Product Specialist at Return to Eden in Atlanta. Visit her when you're in town. A tour by Jennifer is worth your time, and worth the trip.

The rest of these people really rocked my world with their friendship AND their products this year.I feel a gluten-free kinship and fellowship with them all.

Marilyn Santulli and American Gra-Frutti

Everything Marilyn Santulli produces at American Gra-Frutti is product with integrity and lots of gluten-free love. I have to say I have my favorites -- Peppermint Creams, the It's Not Fruitcake, and also the They'll Never Know cake.

But my favorite product is the luscious Peachtree Pimento cheese spread! Here it is with another favorite of the year, Udi's Gluten-Free Whole Grain Bread. Grilled.

Eric Larsen and the fine folks at Starfish Gluten-Free.

I love the battered cod, but more than that, I love the spirit and heart of this company. Eric Larsen has become and email/Facebook friend, and I'm glad I know him. And I'm always glad to reccomend this wonderful product.

And next year? Shrimp and tilapia. Can't wait.

Jill Brack and GLOW Gluten Free

Why I love GLOW and Jill Brack is simple: A heart for the community. She is one of the products featured in the first gluten-free food bank. Her generosity is amazing. Her cookies are better than home-made cookies. Win win. (see post below this for more).

Shelley Ritchie of Moondance Heavenly Desserts.

Shelley's from Georgia, and she's trying very hard to get into Whole Foods. I've been trying to help. She has THE BEST, period, bar none, brownies in the world.

They look like this

but taste...heavenly. And they're available through Gluten Free Mall.

The Best Gluten-Free Places of 2009:

1. Denver, Colorado, is the best gluten-free place on earth. It starts that this is the home my GF brother-from-another-mother, GF Steve! I truly cherish his insight and friendship and love. I can't wait to go to Denver to meet him and The Artist this August. While our friendship has grown from our blogs, it has transcended those blogs.

Also in Denver is perhaps the most important product I found this year -- Udi's Gluten Free. It wins the GF GOLD AWARD of 2009 in my book.

Because of Udi's, I will never have to settle for mediocre gluten-free bread again. Ever. The fact that the lovely Heather Collins at Udi's made me the Southeast Super Here (complete with cape) means I will do anything to get Udi's in a GF person's pantry. Seriously. I even went to stores in Tampa this break with Udi's to get the word out about their fine breads, muffins, and pizza crust. Udi's is Da Place. and Da Bomb.

Check out that sandwich above...wish I could show you my pizza I'm making for dinner.

Also in Denver is a special woman named Gluten-Free Dee, Dee Valdez.

She is the instigator of the first ever gluten-free food bank in Loveland, Colorado. She has inspired me to try to found one of these in my community, in middle Georgia, and in Atlanta. I know I will have great guidance and love with this. What a loving, giving spirit. So inspirational.

So yeah, I wanna go to Denver and take all of you with me!

And finally, the rest for 2009

Shoutouts to:

Gluten Free Gobsmacked author Kate Chan and the chicklet. How happy am I? Aunt Ging says hey!

The Atlanta Metro Celiacs
and Middle Georgia GIG

Chef James Harris at Harrah's Atlantic City

Lee Tobin and the Whole Foods GF Bakehouse

GFMeals from Your Dinner Secrets (Pork cutlets!)

Nebo Restaurant in Boston


Coconut Bliss

Blue Moon Pizza in Smyrna, Georgia

Outback in Roswell, Ga.

Sally's Bakery on Roswell Road

and of course,

My sweet Randy


to Lobster, the original GF food, anywhere

Much love, and here's to 2010.


1 comment:

  1. I love love love Udi's Gluten Free Bread. My daughter, who also eats gluten free, sent me a loaf in a package of other stuff. When it came, I immediately opened the loaf, and it smelled like bread. I buttered a slice, took a bite, and said to my husband, "I will never buy another brand of bread." Then we made sandwiches, and after lunch, I ordered a case of 8 loaves. I wrote a review on my blog and told people, 'drop what you are doing and go order this bread, right now.'

    I am in love, as in love as you can be with bread.