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Canada Names RFT Editor-in-/Chief Top American Online Food Writer editor Bobbie Hasselbring enjoys lobster at the Maine Lobster Festival

The Canadian Tourism Commission (CTC) announced that Founder and Editor-in-Chief, Bobbie Hasselbring, is America’s top online culinary writer.

At an awards luncheon held at the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel in New York City, the CTC awarded Hasselbring First Place in Online Culinary Writing in the 2013 Northern Lights Awards. Dozens of top food and travel writers across the United States submit hundreds of stories they’ve written the previous year about Canada for the prestigious annual Northern Lights Awards. The categories include Adventure, Leisure, and Lifestyle (print and online), Culinary (print and online), Photography, Video, and Mobile App. Print, Online Writing, Photography and Mobile App entries were judged by John Fennell of the Missouri School of Journalism; Broadcast and Online Video were judged by Roger Williams of IMF, Vancouver, British Columbia. editor Bobbie Hasselbring samples churros in Spain

Where ever she goes, RFT Editor Bobbie Hasselbring tries out the local fare. Here’s she’s sampling churros on the street in Spain.

Professor John Fennell praised Hasselbring’s “deep, poetic reporting” in “A Chinese Food Marathon in Richmond, BC,” her winning story about the Vancouver suburb’s Asian food and cultural scene during the annual Chinese New Year celebration. The story was published on, a food/travel website dedicated to artisan and regional food and authentic travel worldwide. Hasselbring was awarded a certificate and ceramic art specially crafted for the ceremony by one of Canada’s top clay artists.  

Winning Ways Continue

It’s the third consecutive year Hasselbring has been honored by Canada for her writing. In 2011, she won a third place Northern Lights Award for her story “Eastern Townships, Quebec: For the Love of Lavender,” an heartfelt story of love and loss about a businessman who faces a health crises and founds the largest lavender farm in Canada.

In 2012, Hasselbring’s culinary writing won top honors from the Canadian Tourism Commission and Food Day Canada for “Best Culinary Writing in Any Medium” in a nationwide contest of U.S. writers. “A Taste of the Garden,” a story about a historic culinary garden planted in a harsh maritime and a restaurant that creatively uses its herbs and won her top honors. The judges included some of Canada’s top culinary authorities, including Anita Stewart, author of 14 food-related books. Stewart said, “Bobbie wrote lyrically about the Les Jardins de Metis [Maritime Quebec’s Reford Garden]. In both words and images, she expertly captured its spectacular beauty.”

Hasselbring is also one of three finalists for an Excellence in Travel Media Award by Tourism Saskatchewan. The results of that competition will be determined next week.

Other 2013 Northern Lights Awards winners include celebrity chef and TV host, Anthony Bourdain for best Broadcast TV for the Travel Channel’s “Layover” show and second place to Victor Zast; Keith Bellows of National Geographic Traveler for best Mobile App; Amy Rosen and Remy Scalza, first and second places for Print Culinary; John Turk and Andrew Findlay, first and second awards for Leisure, Lifestyle and Adventure Print; Sarah Gold, Leisure, Lifestyle, and Adventure Online Writing; Steve Dolinsky and Johnny Jet, first and second prizes Video; and Catherine Karnow, first place for Photography for National Geographic Society, and Gary Arndt, second place Photography.

 — Photos of RFT Editor Bobbie Hasselbring by Anne Weaver, RFT Editor

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Bobbie Hasselbring

RFT founder and the website's former editor-in-chief, Bobbie Hasselbring has been a travel junkie her entire life. She's been an award-winning writer and editor for more than 25 years and author of the regional food-travel bestsellers, The Chocolate Lover’s Guide to the Pacific Northwest and The Chocolate Lover’s Guide Cookbook.

7 thoughts on “Canada Names RFT Editor-in-/Chief Top American Online Food Writer

  1. Laura Parsons

    Congratulations! That is fantastic news, Bobbie! Your writing entices us to read your travel adventures with new goals for our own culinary experiences. That lobster looks so good I feel like you might share a bite! 🙂

  2. Sue Frause

    Congratulations, Bobbie! So glad we connected and look forward to working with you (love all the travel connections we make). Cheers to you!

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