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Recap of Paleo(fx) 2014

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I love Austin. It’s the only city that I’ve ever really truly considered moving to. The weather is pretty wonderful, the people are lovely and fit (yes, that is important to me) and the city is very hip. Bill from Primal Palate explained the town as very hip, but not trying to be. Which is true. That town just wreaks coolness everywhere. From the strung lights all over town, to the loud music playing no matter which block you turn on, to the small restaurants created by food enthusiasts…it’s exactly what I would want in a city.

Getting to Austin for Paleo(fx) this year proved to be the challenging point. After the plane being 45 minutes late, I thought we were good to go. But once we were directly over Austin, we were informed that the president would be taking off with Air Force One so we couldn’t land until they were off the ground. So we circled. Nice, big circles. A bit annoying, especially since I was holding my pee for the airport. Peeing on airplanes sucks. The pilot even informed us that if the president didn’t take off in 5 minutes, we would have to stop in San Antonio to fuel then head back. WTF? You’re frustrating, Obama. But luckily, after 45 minutes of circling the air, we were allowed to land. It was silly. But I held my pee. NBD. And thankfully, I had pretty much the nicest guy in the entire world sitting next to me. I rarely ever talk to the person next to me, but this young guy with a long ginger beard was just the friendliest of friendly people. We pretty much told our life stories. I’ve never seen someone so happy about life. And flying. He LOVED flying. So he kept me entertained with stories while we flew for an unneeded amount of time.

Once I got to Austin, the wonderful day began. Bill and Hayley from Primal Palate, Kara (their awesome assistant) and I headed straight to 24 Diner for lunch to meet up with a crap ton of other bloggers. This restaurant was my total favorite last time I was in town and it did not disappoint this year. I had a bacon and gorgonzola burger on arugula along side bacon braised green beans. The meal was amazing. Then Josh brought out his favorite new cookies he’s made for everyone to have one, and it was officially the best meal. But what made the experience even more special was a guy inside the restaurant (we were outside on the patio) bought my lunch to thank me for my website. He told me it was the least he could do. How crazy nice is that? Talk about good karma for him. I was so incredibly touched by this guy. So cool.

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this burger was effing awesome
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chewy, sweet, chocolate and salt. perfection.

 

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yay 24 Diner!

After we grocery shopped for the house we were staying at, and spent a total of 10 minutes in the house, we headed over to a gelato place called Dolce Neve to try out their grass fed dairy gelato. I honestly couldn’t remember the last time I had tasted gelato. And this place was the perfect reminder of how amazing gelato is. I had the pistachio and salted caramel flavor and ate it waaaaay too quickly. We then headed to the rented house to have a little potluck. Which included more sweets. I wasn’t planning on eating just dessert for dinner that night, but that’s how it turned out. Brittany from Brittany Angell brought literally 50 pounds of treats with her to Austin to share with all of us. So I tried half of her homemade fudge rounds, which was honestly the best thing I’ve ever put into my mouth, and half of her oatmeal cream pie. All of it was insanely delicious. I got a little sugar high, but I kept it together. Even though we were planning to turn it in early that night because of all the circle flying thanks to Obama, we ended up not getting home until late and completely passing out.

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i want to eat that all the time
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no wait, i want to eat THAT all the time

The next morning, we made breakfast that included bacon, eggs, and green beans. The house included 8 people: me, Bill, Hayley and Kara from Primal Palate, Sean and Suzanne from Pastured Kitchen, Vanessa from Clean Eating with a Dirty Mind and Stacy who doesn’t have a blog and we still love her. We then went to Picnik to grab some coffee on our way to Paleo(fx). I had never been to Picnik and a ton of people recommended it. Which I totally understand now. This cute little stand sits upon a grassy hill where you can get coffee, shakes, food, treats and then sit in the grass and be merry. And merry I was. I got a mocha chocolatte which was filled with butter, coconut oil, protein powder, and all kinds of other cool stuff. I’m not a huge fan of buttered coffee like all you paleo weirdos out there, but this one was really good. And it kept me almost all day. Because I had that at 11am and didn’t get hungry again until 6pm. And that’s usually not how I work.

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simple is best when it comes to breakfast
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mocha chocolatte is AMAZING

Friday was the only day I had much of a schedule at Paleo(fx). I did a cooking demo with Vanessa from Clean Eating with a Dirty Mind where we cooked up some cauliflower rice topped with teriyaki beef stir fry. The demo went smooth as can be. And when we asked if people had any questions, people asked if I missed my dog and what I fed my dog. Jackson is pretty much famous. What a badass.

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so glad I got to teach a cooking demo with Vanessa!!

The next thing I had to do at Paleo(fx) was speak on a panel. I hadn’t done one before and I’d really like to never do one again. Some people love voicing their opinions to others, but I kind of think that’s what my blog is for. So why do it in person to others who don’t give a sh*t about my opinion. Speaking on a panel feels cold. The room is silent, no one is smiling, no one is laughing. It’s just boring in all honesty. You’re asked a question, you answer it then get off topic about something else you actually wanted to talk about, then someone else can’t really answer the question because the whole conversation has been side tracked. It’s just a weird environment. Some people love it. I saw that first hand. And those people should have been on stage, not me. Just a fact.

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After the painfully quiet panel ended, we headed on our way to dinner. There’s was absolutely no way I was going to be around more paleo dessert debates, so I headed to dinner with Vanessa, Stacy and our girlfriend Cassy from Fed and Fit, all dessert lovers, to the Salty Sow. The year before, I had gone to all the preplanned dinners that cost over $125 and were terrible. This year, I would not make the same mistake. We had multiple cocktails (gin and tonic for me, please), truffled deviled eggs, bone marrow (found out I’m not huge on bone marrow), duck fat fries, then I finished my meal off with some pork shoulder. It was AWESOME. Oh duh, we had butterscotch salted caramel pudding for dessert. Wonderful. Everyone should try that place if you go to Austin.

The next day, us ladies decided we needed a shopping day. No paleo talk, no grumpy people, no jerky and snacks from vendors, just shopping and girl talk. And that’s exactly what we did. We went shopping on Congress and went to a bunch of small tents for jewelry and whatever we could find. The best tent I found was Stitch and Stone. Love their jewelry!

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Later we had lunch at a Mexican restaurant that was just whatever, so I don’t really need to talk about it. But we decided we needed to treat ourselves to gelato, because it was Saturday and sunny and hot outside and we were in Austin, but mostly because the other ladies hadn’t tasted the amazing gelato. So I took one for the team and ate the damn gelato. This time I got salted caramel AND goat cheese with blueberry and lime. Then we shopped more and more before deciding that we needed to try HopDoddy for dinner. The thing about that place is the line is loooong, but that’s pretty much how all restaurant lines are unless you can make a reservation. So we waited in line for an hour and a half but thankfully they brought us cocktails as we hung out in line outside around the building. I won’t say it was the best burger I’ve ever had, but it was pretty good.

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more wonderful people

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The last day in Austin was just as wonderful as the previous days. Mostly because I started my day off at a CrossFit gym! I went to Fortitude Fitness and did “The Sevens” workout. I’ve truly never been so sweaty. Seriously, ever. And it was the one time I didn’t have a headband. My eyes were burning the entire workout, but it was needed. And to celebrate a great workout, we headed off to Kerbey Lane to have some breakfast, but mostly to have gluten free gingerbread pancakes. That place was pretty good but the pancakes were SO thick, we had to smother them in maple syrup to be able to eat them. I’m not complaining. Then we headed back to the expo to see some lovely people including my readers, vendors, bloggers, and really smart people. I also got to see my cookbook cover on the front of a postcard. I nearly teared up. I’m just so so excited for my second cookbook and to finally see it in person soon!

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breakfast is complete without Hayley
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just a few of the awesome people i met this weekend
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the cover of our cookbook in small version!

We finished our final night at a BBQ place that I wasn’t super impressed with. Not as impressed as last year. But then we got Lick to end the whole weekend on a high note. I got salted caramel and coconut peanut butter and chocolate ice cream. It was fantastic.

Ok, we need to summarize. The weekend was absolutely wonderful. I couldn’t have asked for a more fun weekend. I met truly good people, didn’t hung out much with the non-fun people, ate good food, laughed until I cried, and felt no sort of shame about anything I ate. I say that because I think when people see the food I upload to instagram, they feel like I can’t call myself paleo or I’m splurging and going to feel sick after. That’s not the case. I live my life how I would like to. With food that doesn’t make me feel sick and a balance of good food and happy times. I don’t feel any sort of sadness or frustration when I eat a treat, I just get on with my day and eat what I need to to feel the way I would like to. This trip was no different. Now go live life. Be merry. And go to Austin. RIGHT NOW. Man, I love that city.

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Oh, Hi! I’m Juli.

I’m a food hoarder. And a really bad dancer. If you don’t know me well, you will probably not understand my humor. Therefore, I apologize ahead of time. Thanks for listening to my ramblings of my ever-changing life and trusting my kitchen mishaps. Your trust in me is appreciated.

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49 thoughts on “Recap of Paleo(fx) 2014”

  1. Just checked out the Etsy store for Stitch and Stone. I want everythinggg.

    Looks like you had an amazing trip!

  2. Hi Juli!
    I was so excited to see your post about Austin! I’ve lived here (or in the area) all my life, and it’s always so fun to hear about what others think of it. It truly is a unique place. 🙂 thanks for all the great recipes and entertaining rambling! Never fails to make me laugh.
    Brittany
    P.s. I am DYING to know what the not so good mexican and bbq places were! That’s kind of what we’re known for around here…

  3. Wow, that looks like an incredible weekend with amazing people and food, very jealous! I’m sure you rocked the panel, but I hear you, not sure why a panel has to give that stick-up-its-a– vibe!?

    I love that you make no apologies for doing YOUR paleo thing, after all the whole point is to find your own personal health. I don’t know why some people can’t get that! LOVE your recipes and your awesome attitude!

  4. I live in Austin and I seriously don’t get the love for HopDoddy. The people who work there are fantastic and they make a decent burger but there are SO MANY OTHER PLACES here to get a really good burger without waiting in line for an hour and a half. Crazy. All of you out-of-towners got hit with the airport whammy — Obama on the way in and awful weather delays on the way out! Glad everyone made it home okay, though!

    1. I think that’s just a picture of a ring she tried on at stitch and stone. Its on the wrong hand to be an engagement ring anyway.

      1. Nope. What I’m talking about isn’t that pic — it’s the post-breakfast with Hayley photo that shows a big gold/diamond number right on the 4th finger of Juli’s left hand. There may be news in the air…?

        1. hahahaha no no, i just wanted to wear both rings and my fingers were all swollen from working out so i had to wear both on those two fingers since they wouldn’t fit anywhere else

  5. Thank you so much for sharing your trip experience! I wanted to go to Austin for the conference so badly but unfortunately I could not make it work out because of deadlines for school… also by the time I seriously considered making the trip, round trips from Halifax, Nova Scotia were 1,200 dollars … not in my budget! Thank you for your blog, every new recipe and post is a bright spot in my day!

  6. Juli,

    I loved this post! Austin is my favorite city to visit and I loved your write-up of the weekend. Your balanced approach to eating and living a FULL life the way you want to inspires me!! Keep all the great posts and pics of Jackson coming!

  7. Just ate at the Salty Sow in Phoenix.. . how can we get next year’s event here in Downtown?
    We have a great crossfit community and fantastic nightlight … plus a great little hotel and conference center I just happen to sell!

  8. Austin is one of the best cities. I have been out in the Denver area looking at colleges with my daughter who is gluten intolerant. We laughed that we are really on a tour of all places that have gluten free food. Have had the best baked goods in Colorado Springs and finally found a pizza that had the most amazing crust we have experienced so far at Marcos.If I was an organised person I would have asked you for a list of places to try in Denver. We were in the city for only 2 days but next time I will ask ahead. Love your puppy!

  9. The weather is wonderful? I lived there several years and the summer is a nightmare of heat. Austin is fun, but it can’t hold a candle to Portland, OR, where I now live. Lots of paleo stuff here too, but glad you had fun!

    1. Austin and Portland are sister cities. Portland just has terrible weather but it’s pretty much the same city. It’s only mid 80s here currently.

  10. So glad you loved Austin!! Isn’t it the bomb? I was so bummed that I was just up the highway and couldn’t make it to Paleo(fx)…I’m hoping to next year!

  11. You are so hilarious, Juli! (Your rants are honestly one of my favorite parts of your blog) Very inspiring for me to live a lifestyle like you once I am out of college! Can’t wait to try your carrot cake cookies this weekend 🙂 Have a great day!

  12. I live in Austin as was a volunteer at Paleo FX. I had 3 out of town house guests for the event and we caught your cooking demo and it inspired us to recreate the recipe with Venison that one of the guys had brought as a gift. It turned out great. What was better was the 2 guys were in the kitchen doing the cooking. I’m glad you enjoyed your time in Austin. It’s the only place in Texas I’d want to live.

    1. so glad you liked my stuff because i LOVED yours. i wish i would have bought more while i was there. your stuff was my favorite by far!

  13. Can’t wait to get your new cookbook! I have it on pre-order 🙂 PS- Love to new font on the book cover vs. the old font. I think it’s fresher- if that’s a word you can use for fonts lol.

  14. Caitlin Griffin

    Can’t wait to visit Austin and hopefully attend the conference/expo someday. Thanks for the daily inspiration 🙂

  15. I feel like i’ve seen all these pictures haha, (good ol’ IG) But I just wanted to say that you are gorgeous Juli! Thanks for sharing!

  16. Hi Juli!
    My friends and I loved your cooking demo and wanted to go all fan girl on you guys and offer to hold the mic for Vanessa, but held back. I’m glad that someone else picked up on the non fun vibe, there were a couple vendors that we had fun with but overall the atmosphere just seemed so heavy (which is another reason we didn’t approach you to tell you how wonderful you are and how much we love you). At any rate, I love your site and recipes, thank you for all you do.

    1. Girrrrrl you totally should have come talk to me. That’s what’s weird about these events, a lot of people in the community are so serious or feel entitled like they are better than others. It’s a bummer 🙁

  17. Seriously LOVE that floral tank you are wearing in one of the first pictures! So cute! Glad you had a great trip and I love your honesty with food. You only live once! Enjoy the gelato! 🙂

  18. I was also a volunteer at the conference and the highlight of my entire weekend was you signing your cookbook for me. It was the last one that I brought with me that needed to be signed. Like someone else said, I was quite timid about speaking to you. Yes, I was a little star struck! I was also the person that signed ya’ll in on Thursday. I don’t live in Austin, I’m in the San Antonio area, and was staying with my oldest son but was at the conference alone. I have now learned that will be more fun hanging out with other that share your interest in Paleo. I love your blog and my co-worker loves your older youtube videos that you dance in, he misses those! And I agree with everyone else, your clothes are great and Jackson is the cutest!!

  19. Loved this post! And I will have to say, I think HopDoddy is overrated. It’s good, sure, but not worthy of its usual line in my opinion. Next time you visit, try to check out Wholly Cow Burger (http://www.whollycowburgers.com). They have two locations now, but I have only been to the one on South Lamar (many, many times). Their “Fit Cross” burger is what my dreams are made of.. Amazing local, grass-fed organic beef patty with bacon on portabella “buns”. I usually add avocado. Sweet potato fries are also stellar. And you won’t have to wait for an hour sweltering in the sun!

  20. Ohhhh and also head to Lulling or Lockhart for some seriously good BBQ! Lulling has City Market, which is my favorite, but you can’t go wrong with Black’s, Kreuz, or Smitty’s all in Lockhart. In Austin, there is a great BBQ
    truck, Brown’s BBQ (usually parked on S Lamar), that has some of the very best ribs I’ve ever had.

  21. Juli – thank you for always being honest and transparent about your approach to Paleo. Nobody has time for the paleo police!

    I started experimenting with paleo about a year ago, because I love testing out different eating styles on my body, but I don’t eat meat (personal choice) so I’ve had to find ways to modify so that it fits my lifestyle. It’s nice to see a ‘paleo celeb’ doing the same! Plus, cookies and ice cream are delicious and indulging in moderation is A-OK in my book.

  22. 1. You had a fantastic trip! I now need to add Austin to my bucket list.

    2. I would never pass up the chance to have salted caramel gelato. Never ever.

    3. Your viewpoint on eating is so balanced and makes so much sense, that I immediately think OF COURSE it’s paleo. You rock Julie.

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