Prime Your Palate for Litquake's Food Events
Every year, Litquake brings together a veritable orgy of events for writers and readers, and anyone whose soul is a little bit thirsty for some literary juice or a chance to worship at Dave Eggers' feet. This year there are some seriously stellar-sounding food events programmed into the lineup as well. Nina Lesowitz, who is in charge of the food-related programming, tells us there's always a place for food in the festival.
Litquake Sean Vahey and Jake Godby of Humphry Slocombe will be there.
"When people think of a literary festival, they expect to hear poets, authors, even musicians. But in San Francisco, which has been called the 'ground-zero of food politics,' it's only natural to have this food-centric portion," said Lesowitz.
The festival takes place from October 5 to 14, and most of the food events are backloaded towards the end, so you get to spend the week getting hungry. Till then, prime your palate with our short guide to Litquake for foodies:
Novel Endings: Spicy Drinks and Artisanal Desserts
When: Fri., Oct 12, 6 p.m.
Where: The Bold Italic Office
Cost: $20 in advance or at the door
The rundown: We could have picked the lineup for this sweet boozy event from our dreams: founders of Humphry Slocombe ice cream Jake Godby and Sean Vahey; Frugal Foodie cookbook author Lara Star; expert sommelier Evan Goldstein; and the Berkeley dessert chef Alice Medrich -- the Cocolat founder credited with bringing truffles to America (everyone, say "thank you"). Together they will be inventively pairing the likes of Graham's Six Grapes Reserve Port, Rosenblum Cellars late harvest Viognier, St. George Spirits' Breaking & Entering bourbon with ice cream and sweet treats. The night is so special that St. George will be whipping up a custom drink: The Spiced Apple Thief. $20 in advance or at the door.
Chew on This: A Fresh Take on our Obsession with Food
When: Sat., Oct. 13, 3 p.m.
Where: The Marsh Arts Center
The rundown: John Birdsall, senior editor at CHOW.com will moderate a panel that works on the question of when food became central to identity. When we spoke to Birdsall about what to expect, it seemed the conversation would have a Michael Pollan-esque political edge as well. "People in the Bay Area really embody politics. I love that. Politics can invade every part of our lives, and food is a great vector for that," said Birdsall.
The panel includes Julie Guthman, who will pull out some contrarian points on the obesity epidemic, writer on food policy and Wild farm Alliance founder Dan Imhoff, food writer/editor Stephanie Lucianovic, and Barb Stuckey of Mattson.
"At first it's not completely obvious what a panel as diverse as this one would really have to say to each other," said Birdsall, "but the cool thing is that they have all worked in such different disciplines and worked out the problems with food therein, whether it be food politics or their personal relationship to food, in very different ways.It's super exciting to have them all in one room."
You'll have to jog over to the East Bay to catch this one, a place Birdsall thinks is particularly important to the food scene.
"We know by now our food choices have all sorts of baggage attached to them, economically, personally, ethically, and people in the East Bay seem to be particularly attuned to that. So this is a great spot to have this discussion."
Tablehopper Presents...Out of the Kitchen and On the Road
When: Sat., Oct. 13, 6-7 p.m.
Where: Craftsman and Wolves
The rundown: As part of the annual Litcrawl through the Mission (along with the following two events), Marcia Gagliardi will interview Daniel Patterson, Richie Nakano of Hapa Raman, Eddie Lau, and Samin Nosrat about their international experiences.
I Scream, You Scream, Kids Write for Ice Cream
When: Sat., Oct. 13, 6-7 p.m.
Where: 18 Reasons
The rundown: 18 Reasons hosts a reading of students' stories about ice cream, developed at the Peanut Butter & the Pen workshops. Kids and ice cream lovers are welcome.
The Cassoulet Saved Our Marriage: True Tales of Food, Family, and How We Learn to Eat
When: Sat., Oct. 13, 7:15-8:15 p.m.
Where: Mission Cheese
The rundown: After hitting up one of the previous events, head over to Mission Cheese to hear a highly personal take on why food matters in the family. Featuring Gregory Dicum, Caroline M. Grant, Chris Malcomb, and K.G. Schneider.