Texan takes two at Taste of the Kenai

Texan takes two at Taste of the Kenai

The Kenai Peninsula Tourism Marketing Council (KPTMC) held its 5th Annual Taste of the Kenai Food and Spirit Tasting Event Saturday, February 28th at the Sterling Community Center. The event sold out 300 tickets an entire week in advance for the third year in a row.

“KPTMC created ‘The Taste’ to highlight the unique culinary experiences on the Kenai Peninsula, connect with the community and encourage residents to get out and enjoy their own back yard,” said KPTMC executive director Shanon Hamrick.

This year 20 food and spirit vendors participated from Seward to Homer that included winner for people’s choice best dessert 1 Crazy Cupcake: A variety of mini Crazy Cupcakes, “Cupcakes make everything better!” said Sierra Lehl who started her business last fall, “It was just a hobby that I liked to do, my grandma taught me how to cook and in September I became so busy I had to quit my job and do this full time. It was a thrill for me to win, I never imagined I’d be leaving with the plaque,” she said. 1 Crazy Cupcakes are available at Tammy’s Flowers in Soldotna.

Other entries included Alaska Berries: Alaska Berries wine, vanilla ice cream with Haskap berry syrup. Bear Creek Winery: Various Bear Creek Winery Wine. Cakelady in Sterling: Various specialty cupcakes. Chinooks: Specialty sliders, turtle cake, el jefe cocktail. Fine Thyme Cafe: Quiche, grilled cheese, wraps, bread pudding & Russian cream. And the winner of the overall People’s Choice award and the Best Entrée went to Terry Johnson and his wife Michelle for Brisket, pulled pork and ribs. Terry and his wife recently moved to the Kenai from Texas, “We only opened 7 months ago so we’re ecstatic!” he told the Dispatch. “The secret is all in the rub. We do a slow smoke barbeque with lots of love, I use mesquite wood that I ship up from Texas. Texas is a nice place I learned a lot down there, but Alaska is beautiful. We came up to visit for vacation, went home and sold the ranch and two months later moved here and we’re lovin’ it and we’re here to stay,” said Terry, a retired firefighter.

Other offerings that filled the capacity crowd included: Golden International: Sushi samples and Chinese appetizers, Homer Brewing: Red Knot Scottish, Iced & Sliced: A variety of gourmet cupcakes and macaroons, Kaladi Brothers: Drip coffee, Italian sodas, coffee samples and take home samples, Kenai River Brewing Co.: Various Kenai River Brewery Beer, Mykel’s Restaurant: Cranberry gorgonzola pecan pita bites with fennel slaw, Odie’s Deli: Homemade soup and cookies, Sweet Nothings Bakery: A variety of gourmet cake samples and glittering cake pops, The Chart Room Restaurant: Alaskan Bouillabaisse, The Flats Bistro: Bratwurst w/house sauerkraut & The Flats whole grain mustard, The Restaurant at the Porterhouse Grill: Ribeye & New York strip steak bites with potatoes. According to Hamrick this year 18 food and spirit vendors participated from Hope all the way to Homer including Veronica’s Café who offered Soup and Brownie Bites. When it came down to the best brew award it was St. Elias with various St. Elias Beers who won the people’s choice for Best Brew. “A popular aspect of The Taste each year is the People’s Choice awards,” said Hamrick, “It means a lot to everyone especially the winners. In addition to the food and drink samplings attendees enjoyed a live and silent auction full of great items and activities and several raffles. New this year was the use of eco-friendly food service products provided by Loopy Lupine Distribution out of Homer. We extend a huge shout out and thank you to everyone who participated in making this a record breaking year for KPTMC. The Taste is our major fund raiser of the year,” said Hamrick.

All proceeds from the event go to support the Kenai Peninsula Tourism Marketing Council to promote The Kenai Peninsula as a world class vacation destination. A great place to visit is a great place to live, work and do business.

Texan takes two at Taste of the Kenai
Texan takes two at Taste of the Kenai
Texan takes two at Taste of the Kenai
Texan takes two at Taste of the Kenai

More in News

A sign warning of a June 28, 2021, bear attack is placed at the head of the Kenai River Trail on Skilak Loop Road in the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge on June 30, 2021. (Photo by Erin Thompson/Peninsula Clarion)
Federal wildlife officers seek information about early-May black bear poaching

Officials think the poaching happened near the east entrance of Skilak Loop roughly 2 miles from Jims’ Landing

Alaska State Troopers logo.
Ninilchik woman dead after Tuesday collision

The woman was attempting to cross the Sterling Highway from Oil Well Road when she was struck by a pickup truck

Graduates listen to Connections Homeschool Principal Doug Hayman speak during the school’s commencement ceremony on Thursday in Soldotna. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Graduates listen to Connections Homeschool Principal Doug Hayman speak during the school’s commencement ceremony on Thursday, May 16, 2024 in Soldotna, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
‘Expect a lot from yourself and from others’

Connections Homeschool students accept diplomas at commencement ceremony

Screenshot
Graduates of Seward High School leave the gym at the end of their graduation ceremony on Wednesday.
‘Give people something to talk about’

Seward High School graduates 30

Kenai Police Chief David Ross speaks to Kenai City Council members about an ordinance that would repeal sections of city code that prohibit public sleeping and loitering and the city’s curfew on Wednesday, May 15, 2024, in Kenai, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Kenai OKs repeal of loitering laws, curfew for minors

The policies, first enacted in 1978, are difficult to enforce and potentially violate citizens’ rights, according to the Kenai Police Department

Nikiski Middle/High School graduates throw their caps into the air at the conclusion of a graduation ceremony in the school’s gym in Nikiski, Alaska, on Wednesday, May 15, 2024. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Nikiski graduates ‘will always be a part of each other’s stories’

The graduates celebrated their time together and took a moment to anticipate the bright futures that lie ahead

A seal pup rescued from near Kenai beach is treated by the Alaska SeaLife Center’s Wildlife Response Program on May 9, 2024. (Photo courtesy Kaiti Grant/Alaska SeaLife Center)
SeaLife Center admits abandoned harbor seal pups

Both seals were found abandoned and malnourished, and both were born prematurely

Caitlin Babcock, left, and other graduates enter Soldotna High School’s commencement ceremony on Tuesday, May 14, 2024, in Soldotna, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)
Soldotna sends off more than 140 graduates at Tuesday commencement

More than 140 students stepped off the Soldotna High School graduation stage… Continue reading

Most Read