NPR Covers SFA + Soul Summit at Rivendell

by Kate Parrish on January 11th, 2017

“Could fifteen food world colleagues cook together, set a common table, and ring the dinner bell to welcome all, despite differences in background and vocation that might divide us? Could we speak honestly to one another? Could the ideas we discussed, the agendas we promoted, reconcile us to one another? And could our reconciliation offer a forward progress blueprint for our colleagues across the nation?”

These are the questions Toni Tipton Martin, author of The Jemima Code: Two Centuries of African American Cookbooks, poses in the first of a series of essays (several of which will make their debut via NPR) to come out of the August 2016 summit on racism and difference in food held at Rivendell Writers’ Colony. The two-day summit, led by the Southern Foodways Alliance and Soul Summit and moderated by John Simpkins, focused on how difference based on color imprints and imperils American food culture.

Over the next few weeks we’ll be sharing the essay collaborations that were born out of this important assembly of some of the culinary and literary worlds’ most dynamic voices. To read them in full, head over to, NPR or follow along here. Read the rest of Toni’s essay, “How the South Leads” here.

Pictured clockwise from top left: Todd Richards, Caleb Zigas, Gustavo Arellano, John T. Edge, Lora Smith, Adrian Miller, Paul Fehribach, Andrea Reusing, Michael Twitty, Lolis Eric Elie, Toni Tipton-Martin, Tunde Wey, Diep Tran, Nicole A. Taylor. Not pictured: John Simpkins.

Photo provided by Southern Foodways Alliance.