Pesto, change-o: conference food done right

This is my third piece in my continuing saga on Dreamforce 2012. I already wrote about the attendee experience and how social is changing things (with data to back up that claim). On the heels of a fun night Tailgating with DelCor, I turn now to my favorite topic...

If you know me, you know I love food. Lunch was a grilled chicken breast sandwich with arugula and a cilantro/jalapeno pesto on a crispy role. The bean salad and cookie were also not something you’d typically find at a large meeting lunch buffet. How long was the line? I waited, at lunch time, behind five or six people to pick up my lunch box. I sat outside in the sun and listened to a local ‘girl’ band comprised of four 15-year-old girls who formed their band in fifth grade – and they were good.

The conference didn’t cost any more – and even significantly less, in some cases – than many of the association meetings I attend, yet the DreamForce folks gave the food the attention it requires. Other days’ lunches were equally happy experiences. If they can accomplish this with relatively low registration fees for a huge onsite attendance (70k folks), then my expectations are raised to expect more than a tray of cold cuts and condiments. Just say no to stale buffet lines.