VCC – Brain Friendly Food and More

Quite honestly, this innovative and thoughtful menu was too good not to share.

#ecv11 Vancouver Convention Centre Meal

Chef Blair Plates lunch

To be able to put into practice what we are talking about with meeting design and brain friendly foods, and to see and hear about the tangible results was an Event Camp win for all.

Often as meeting planners we will choose from existing menus which may not entirely inspire with their flavours.  More importantly though, the approach often means that we are feeding our delegates high-fat breakfasts, breaks that have many baked goods full of white flour and white sugar leading to carb and sugar loads that have a negative impact on learning and engagement as your body struggles with the chemicals they release in the brain which leads to the “rush” and then the crash, rather than a stable release of blood sugars that allow for maximum meeting energy.

 With Event Camp Vancouver we worked with the Chef to try a fresh approach and the snacks below were available always through the day, so participants could go out at any time and re-energize on their own schedule.

For more information on Chef Blair Rasmussen’s philosophy and approach to creating nutritious and delicious food in the Vancouver Convention Centre’s scratch kitchen can be found here  

The Menu

 Morning Energy Bar

Low Fat Yoghurt Mango Banana Shots

Build Your Own Granola 

Gluten-free Chocolate Almond Loaf

Smoked Oceanwise Salmon, Emmenthal and Free-Range Egg Popovers

Fruit Energy Shot Blocks

Whole Fruit Basket 

Espresso Drink Bar with a Range of Espresso Drinks with Skim, 2% and Soy Milks, Matcha Tea Lattes, Vancouver Convention Centre Wildflower Honey 

Raspberry Smoothie and Watermelon, Organic Orange, Grapefruit and Carrot Juices

Pitchers of Water

Lunches at meetings are often heavy, or multi-course or buffet, and often are also high carb, leading every speaker to ask to not have that post lunch spot! Chef Blair and his team presented an incredible, light, fresh lunch full of local ingredients, and the participants really appreciated having something different. 

Lunch was presented with family style platters for the salad skewers and mini-dessert pops with the main presented in a “bento box” format shown above.

Platters of Caprese Salad Skewers

Spot Prawn Cucumber Sunomono, Micro Greens, Oceanwise Albacore Tuna Tataki and Avocado Tartar on Grilled Papadum,Vegetable Tofu Crepe Roll, Aldersmoked Free range Chicken, Chanterelles and du Puy Lentils

Platters of Double Chocolate and Lemon Cake Pops, Light Raspberry Ricotta Cakes, Apple Kuchen 

Afternoon Energy Bar

Build Your Own Trail Mix 

Garden Vegetable Crudités,

Gluten-free Crisps, Yogurt Dip and Hummus

Cranberry Oat Bites, Kamut Shortbread

and again the Fruit Energy Shot Blocks, Espresso Drink Bar,  Hydration Station were again available.

We knew we were providing the nutritional basis for keeping the attendees alert, so we added small details, a sand trough to play in, playdoh and markers at the lunch table, and an amazing environment to ensure that all the senses were engaged, each piece leading to greater retention of learnings and more “connecting the dots” which leads to greater future application of learning.

Thank you to the Vancouver Convention Centre and Centerplate Catering for understanding and working with us to deliver this innovative menu.