Steve Glum, the Chief Marketing Officer, Ace Cafe North America, joins us in the studio to talk about his role at the motorcycle-focused café in downtown Orlando. He shares stories from his time at Ripley’s including a run-in with the famed fertility statues, his time at Hard Rock, and what it was like being part of the opening staff at WDW’s Pleasure Island.
We also discuss TASTE! Central Florida. The annual event that helps raise funds for Second Harvest Food Bank and Coalition for the Homeless. Taking place August 19, 2017, at the World Center Marriott on 536 TASTE! is the premier foodie event of the year and this year is no exception. We also get new details on BOTH Oklahoma Joe’s BBQ joints coming to Central Florida and hear new details on future of the Ace Café brand.
I often cover issues related to pay and the struggles of Central Floridians in the local tourism industry here on Orlando Tourism Report and if any if you have even listened even once then you know that I’m passionate about ensuring we have a strong tourism workforce. But that can only happen if they’re healthy, happy, and willing to stay here.
In Central Florida, 1 in 6 people struggle with food insecurity. 44.5% of Florida households cannot afford basic needs such as housing, childcare, food, health care, and transportation – the vast majority of these families are working. As we work to ensure better pay in the hospitality industry, and in return better pay across the board in Central Florida. there is something else we can do to ensure that ALL Central Floridians are able to fall asleep every night with full stomachs.
The newly re-branded TASTE! Central Florida is this Saturday, August 19, 2017 from 6:45 p.m. – 10:00 p.m. I’m convinced this is the BEST foodie event of the year in Central Florida. If you’re a fan of the various food and wine events at the local theme parks you’ll love TASTE! It has well over 100 local restaurants who showcase the amazing creativity of their chefs with bite-sized dishes using the finest of ingredients.
Yes, tickets at $150 are a bit pricey but that’s honestly less than I spent at Epcot’s Food & Wine fest last time I went there and the proceeds from this go to a great cause. Both the Coalition for the Homeless of Central Florida and Second Harvest Food Bank of Central Florida are supported by the event. Approximately 498,000 individuals turn to Second Harvest’s food pantries and meal service programs to feed themselves and their family each year.
This year’s event will include OTR favorites like Yak & Yeti, Universal Orlando, STK, Satu-Li Canteen, SeaWorld, Raglan Road, Paddlefish, and tons of other local restaurants.
The food (and wine!) isn’t the only reason to go to the event. A silent auction has plenty of amazing Central Florida focused items with donations from many of the area’s hospitality leaders. A wine ring toss, the Edible Orlando Giving Tree, a wine cellar giveaway, and many more events take place throughout the evening helping make this one of the most enjoyable evenings of the year. And unlike the parks you don’t have to stand outside when going from booth to booth.
There’s a lot more we can and should be doing to ensure that the 113 million more meals needed per year to fill the hunger gap in our community is a thing of the past but TASTE! is a great first step in that direction. This year, instead of a hot and muggy day of food and wine in a theme park (or on top of it), why don’t you visit the air-conditioned foodie wonderland of TASTE! Central Florida.
TASTE! Central Florida takes place this Saturday, August 18 from 6:45-10:00PM at the Orlando World Center Marriott (the world’s largest Marriott!).
Chef Eric, Director of Restaurant Operations at the Orlando World Center Marriott, stops by Studio B to discuss Taste of the Nation Orlando with us. While the majority of the conversation is focused on this fantastic local fundraiser for Second Harvest Food Bank, Florida Impact and Coalition for the Homeless Chef Eric also took the time to help celebrate the growing local foodie scene that Taste of the Nation helps showcase.
As one of the lead Chefs at the largest Marriott property in the world Chef Eric is tasked with overseeing 8 restaurants and staff over 400. Together they help create flawless experiences for guests at the resort. This is showcased at Taste of the Nation better than anywhere else. The event fills one of the largest, non-columned ballrooms in the nation with the some of the biggest local talent for a night not to be forgotten all with proceeds going to help alleviate local issues.