Social Media Never Tasted So Good

October 18, 2009 at 2:13 pm (Florida, Fort Lauderdale, marketing, networking, social event, Social Events & Networking, social media, South Florida) (, , , , , , , , , , )

Twineup2

Last night’s Himmarshee Twineup Take 2 at Himmarshee’s Side Bar in Downtown Ft. Lauderdale was a “pairing-and-pouring adventure!” The event featured three wine flights paired with passed appetizers, and was sponsored by Matthew Horbund, @mmwine, and Jan Idelman, @janIdelman.

If you’re looking for a classy alternative to the normal tweetup setting, this is an idea for you – wine, food, friends. There were prizes given away sponsored by PokenGirl and Pickchur, and along with the price of the tasting everyone received a coupon for $20 off of a $60 food or wine purchase at the venue.

To start the evening we had a 2008 Murphy-Goode Sauvignon Blanc from Sonoma County. This light, crisp wine paired well with the petit crab cakes with pickled habenero tartart and island spiced shrimp and yucca croquettes with drunken mango salsa.

The second flight was an Australian born 2005 Hope Shiraz. This Shiraz was more fruity and less peppery than most tend be. The pairing for this was amazing! It was a duck confit & sweet potato empanada with vanilla-shiraz macerated cherries.

The final tasting was a 2004 Cabernet Sauvignon, Tahuantinsuyu from Mendoza, Argentina – one of my favorite regions, especially for Malbec! This was paired with mushroom & cambazola toasts with oil cured campari tomatoes.

The evening had a mix of good food, good wine, and good conversations – what more could you ask for? It was nice to meet @PamRockSoFl @enzobalc, @stacykinney, @SisterMary, and thanks to @mmWine and @jidelman for hosting the event! If you missed this twineup, information on the November one will be posted at A Good Time With Wine.

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Cool Beans – A Tale of the Coffee Tasting Tweetup

October 15, 2009 at 12:05 am (Florida, Fort Lauderdale, networking, social event, Social Events & Networking, social media, South Florida, Uncategorized) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Caffe_Rustica

Are you tired of attending tweetups for the masses? Here’s a new spin on the twitter universe – a coffee tasting tweetup. Think of a wine and cheese paring party, but with coffee and cookies. And what overworked designer, developer, geek, or business maven doesn’t like a good cup of coffee? The best part of an event like this is that there is a smaller turnout than many other social media events allowing for more chances to meet and converse with new people.

If you don’t follow what I’m saying, imagine this: you’re a social media newbie, maybe more introverted than some, and decide to go to a social media event. You stand in a corner doing your best wallflower impression and don’t know how to break the ice with people who are part of the “in crowd.” I mean you don’t want to linger like an awkward stalker outside of an ongoing conversation, and busting into someone’s chitchat that you don’t know can come off wrong or just seem rude. An event in a more intimate setting with a small group is a great way to expand your social circle and your comfort zone in unison. So why not hold smaller gatherings to help welcome newbies and make new friends

Tonight’s event was held at Caffe Rustica next to the Gateway Theater in Ft. Lauderdale. The coffee shop was like the Cheers bar, Wings café counter, and Central Perk from Friends all combined into a charming little spot with less drama and better coffee. If they didn’t know your name when you came in, they knew your twitter handle when you left.

We were a little late, so we had some catching up to do. The tasting had started with India Mneb it was like a strong tea, more refreshing than you get from your get-out-of-bed in the morning variety joe. Next up was Brazil Morenhina Formosa made with the Raisin Process – Jim the owner/barista is very knowledgeable in the art of beverage preparation and shared a little about the history, roasting style, and background of each brew. Third tasting was Guatemala Acatenenango Gesha a little stronger than the others, but still very good. The final flight was the strongest (and favorite of mine – the 3 cup-a-day drinker) Ethiopa Bonko made with a Wet Process. This coffee was much more robust than the others, some might say it’ll get you up in the morning and give you a shave, but I just think it was a good strong coffee.

Between flights and after all the rounds had been finished the small group of coffee lovers sat around discussing a variety of interesting topics from camera equipment to anecdotes of everyday life. My favorite conversation centered around Starbucks’ new instant coffee. The most insightful part of the discussion came when someone quipped that they didn’t know what Starbucks’ taste testing ads were supposed to prove. Are they raising the bar for instant coffee or lowering the standard by which we hold our $8 sugar infused creation of fast food-like coffee? If you think about it it’s either one or the other. It’s like up-selling your product while simultaneously devaluing it.

I’d like to thank @CaffeRustica for hosting the event and @MoreWillie for organizing it. It was nice to meet @DavideDiCillo, @ggadventures, and @stefaniwhylie, and apologies to those who I didn’t get your handle. I look forward to the next foray into the world of the caffeinated arts, whenever that may be.

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Pizza, Pizza, Pizza Party!

August 25, 2009 at 11:50 pm (Florida, free, Miami, networking, social event, Social Events & Networking, social media, South Florida) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Pizza-TweetupThis evening was the Pizza Tweetup held at Pizza Volante in the Miami Design District – a special thanks to @Lapp and worstpizza.com for organizing the event. The restaurant offered an intimate space inside, and sidewalk dinning outside allowing for conversation with many groups of people. I always enjoy a good face-to-face discussion with people every once in awhile. Tonight was no different; some of those I carried on conversations with were: @Ines, @jarret23, @jeffreycohen, @valpass, @IamNezer, @alexdc, @johnnybond86, and of course @Lapp. The food was delicious, the company was good, and the bar was serving, so it was great night.

Check back on PizzaTweetup.com for the next event. Unfortunately I won’t be able to make tomorrow night’s RefreshMiami, but there are plenty of upcoming events for the South Florida social media community like Nuvo Tweetini, Herald Tweetup, a hands-on social media training workshop, and rumors of a Beerup (unconfirmed).

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Unmasking the Avatars – Tweetup @ Brio Tuscan Grille

August 19, 2009 at 11:47 am (Florida, Fort Lauderdale, free, networking, social event, Social Events & Networking, social media, South Florida) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

brio-tweetup

Last night I attended my first tweetup. It was sponsored by the Sun-Sentinel and hosted at Brio Tuscan Grille at the Shops at Pembroke Gardens. Brio had some really good food and drink specials for the group. The food was good, the conversations were engaging, and there were a lot of prizes raffled off. I spent some time talking with @pokengirl about the benefits of using pokens – little characters that “high-four” to transfer contact information instead of everyone having to write each other’s name and information down, the data is then transferred to a privately accessible rolodex-esque database. I had some good conversations with @Murrayiz, @ctiedje, @pbabanes, and @rsm4lsu about everything from work related topics to the use and direction of where social media (twitter, facebook, linkedin, etc) are headed.

It was nice to meet the people behind the twitter avatars last night. I hope to see everyone again, and maybe some new faces, at the PizzaTweetup at Pizza Volante on August 25.

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