Raskin’s Really Getting Around

logoThe Southern Foodways Alliance’s annual symposium gets underway tomorrow, if informal dinners around Oxford count. I’ll be there, eating beetroot pachadi, drinking muscadine cocktails and learning about cookbook dowries and Duke’s mayonnaise. The symposium this year is devoted to working women’s stories, and I’m certain attendees of both genders are looking forward to seeing how SFA tackles the topic.

So for the next two days, there won’t be much to read here. But I hope you’ll follow me on Twitter for updates from the event, or – better yet – track #SFA13 for comprehensive coverage.

See you Monday.

Taste of Charleston Iron Chef Pits Men Against Women

bildeIt’s unimaginable that a friendly competition would divide chefs by religion, race or ethnic background. But the gender war format is exceedingly popular in culinary circles: When Top Chef went to Texas, it pitted men against women in Restaurant Wars, and MasterChef Australia built an entire season around the conceit.

And next weekend, Taste of Charleston is basing its Iron Chef event around the “men vs. women” theme, following up on the gender allegiances which naturally rippled through the crowd at last year’s Charleston Wine + Food Festival when Michelle Weaver and Mike Lata met in the Waffle House Smackdown.

At Taste of Charleston, the showdown features Drew Hedlund (Fleet Landing) and Brandon Buck (Middleton Place) taking on Jael Allen (Mosaic) and Eva Broyles (Eli’s Table).

So what happens if the women win? Does a victory advance the cause of kitchen equality? Or does it reinforce the idea that men and women cook differently? Continue reading

Les Dames Raises Funds for Culinary Scholarships

Les Dames d’Escoffier is now selling tickets for its annual fundraiser, an evening eat-and-drink sampling which benefits the groups’ scholarship fund.

The 36-year old philanthropic organization of female leaders in the food-and-beverage industry in 2005 established a Charleston chapter, which is hosting An Autumn Affair for the third time. The Oct. 3 event at Lowndes Grove Plantation will feature live music, wine tasting, member book sales and silent auction. The food lineup includes Callie’s Charleston Biscuits, Cacao’s Artisan Chocolates, Celia’s of Charleston and Empanada Mama.

Tickets to the event, which runs from 6 p.m.-9 p.m., cost $55 and are available at ldeicharleston.com.