On the evening of August 24, thanks to son-in-law Jonathan Moyer, I was on the receiving end of a free dinner at the downtown Denver Hyatt [well, it was almost free - we had to pay for parking]. Daughter Rachel had a work conflict, so I got to be the replacement. The event was the Fourteen Annual Dinner for the University of Denver Joseph Korbel School of International Studies, where Jonathan is currently working toward a PhD. Basically it's a fund-raiser with lots of schmoozing and catering to rich folks, but it's also a time to recognize some folks who have had an impact in Denver and the world. This years honorees were Chauncey Billups, Timothy and Bernadette Marquez, and Ban Ki-Moon, who also gave the keynote address.
But this is not about the event - it's about free food! We were greeted at the top of the escalator by staff serving champagne. Then it was on to the open bar for a Blue Moon and a glass of Merlot. Dinner was First Course - Butter Leaf Lettuce & Endive Salad with Honey Glazed Pecans, Fresh Figs and Local Fort Collins Goat Cheese with a Sherry Garlic Vinaigrette; Entree - Creek Stone All Natural Filet Mignon with Boursin and a Syrah Reduction, Parmesan Truffle Risotto, and Asparagus & Half Roasted Roma Tomato; Dessert - Dulce Picchu. Everything was very good.
What is the fascination with free food? I don't think that it's only me. I certainly did not grow up hungry, but I think that perhaps it all started in college. At Goshen College, the meals were strictly rationed - not even a second glass of milk was allowed during my first couple of years at GC. And, being growing and active boys, we were always looking for more food, and the cheaper the better. Many times we would toast up a whole loaf of bread and top it off with peanut butter and jelly. Our roommates from Vietnam introduced us to "noodle" and we could fill up for pennies! During graduate school days, we students would keep a keen eye out for any event that was accompanied by free food. Thus, I became hooked on the concept that if one looked around, one could find an abundance of free food, from holiday receptions hosted by administrators to departmental seminars and gatherings to happy hours featuring free food bars.
While I still keep on the lookout for free food, our focus now is more on cheap food at Happy Hours! But free is still good, and thanks Jon - that was the best free food I have had in some time :-)