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by Andrea Doyle | September 4, 2013

Food is an integral part of all of our lives and is taking on added importance at meetings. I recently interviewed Debra Dohnert, senior manager of special events and travel for the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, who told me she is bold and daring with the food and beverage functions she creates. Color-changing spoons and straws, martinis paired with manicures, lunch served in individual wicker picnic baskets, and edible designer handbags and shoes are highlights of some of her recent F&B functions. I also had the pleasure of sitting down with Guy Fieri, one of today’s hottest culinary stars, in his restaurant Guy’s American Kitchen & Bar in Times Square to talk about his approach to food and beverage at meetings and events.

Planners will also want to check out "Why Kitchens Are Better Than Conference Rooms," an article by Tim Brown, CEO and president of IDEO as well as a Successful Meetings blogger. IDEO’s all-studio meetings are not held in its conference room but around communal tables in the kitchen. Employees are encouraged to get cooking every week and create something on site to share with colleagues.

- Andrea Doyle