Critical Encounters - "Writing, Food, Intimacy"
Speakers include: Christopher Albrecht, Executive Chef of Eno Terra; Professor Leonard Barkan, Princeton University; Frank Bruni, Columnist and Former Restaurant Critic, New York Times; Gabrielle Hamilton, author and Chef of Prune in New York City; and Anita Lo, author and Chef of Annisa in New York City.
Location: McCormick Hall 101
Date/Time: 03/26/13 at 4:30 pm - 03/26/13 at 6:00 pm
This event is free and open to the public.
Conceived and organized by Professor Anne A. Cheng. Jointly sponsored by the Department of English and the Center for African American Studies.
Critical Encounters brings together like minds from unlike disciplines in a series of open dialogue before an audience of campus community and the public. The series promotes reflections and debates concerning race, cross-cultural translation, and issues of social justice at the intersection of art, theory, culture, and politics. In bringing together artists and thinkers from disciplines that do not traditionally talk to one another who nonetheless share similar preoccupations, this series of dialogues aims to provide opportunities for unexpected, synergistic exchanges. It also aims to engage departments and units across campus in cross-disciplinary collaborations.
Frank Bruni, an Op-Ed columnist for The New York Times since June 2011, joined the newspaper in 1995. Over his years at The Times he has worn a wide variety of hats, including chief restaurant critic (from June 2004 through August 2009) and Rome bureau chief (2002 to 2004). He has also written two New York Times best sellers: a memoir, "Born Round," that was published by Penguin Press in 2009, and "Ambling Into History," a chronicle of George W. Bush's campaign for the presidency, published by HarperCollins in 2002. That same year HarperPerennial reissued, in paperback, "A Gospel of Shame: Children, Sexual Abuse and the Catholic Church," of which he was a co-author. (It was initially published by Viking in 1993.)
Christopher Albrecht is the executive chef of Eno Terra in South Brunswick’s historic village of Kingston. He grew up in East Brunswick, New Jersey. Before joining the Momos — who own such well-regarded Princeton restaurants as Mediterra and Teresa Caffe — he spent more than a decade working with chef/entrepreneur Tom Colicchio. While still at the Culinary Institute of America in 1995, Albrecht began at New York’s Gramercy Tavern, which Colicchio and über-restaurateur Danny Meyer cofounded. In 2000 Albrecht moved to Colicchio’s Craft, then to Las Vegas in 2001 as head chef at Craftsteak, then to New York’s Craftsteak in 2005. Along the way, Albrecht internalized Meyer’s hospitality concept, which places top priority on creating a caring environment that begins with the staff and branches out.
Leonard Barkan is the Class of 1943 University Professor and Chair of the Department of Comparative Literature. He has been a professor of English and of Art History at universities including Northwestern, Michigan, and N.Y.U. Among his books are "The Gods Made Flesh: Metamorphosis and the Pursuit of Paganism", "Transuming Passion: Ganymede and the Erotics of Humanism," and "Unearthing the Past: Archaeology and Aesthetics in the Making of Renaissance Culture," which won prizes from the Modern Language Association, the College Art Association, the American Comparative Literature Association, Phi Beta Kappa, and the PEN America Center. He is the winner of the Morton Dauwen Zabel Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He has been an actor and a director; he is also a regular contributor to publications in both the U.S. and Italy, where he writes on the subject of food and wine. He has recently published "Satyr Square," which is an account of art, literature, food, wine, Italy, and himself. His current projects include a scholarly study of the relations among words, images, and pleasure from Plato to the Renaissance, and a book on Michelangelo's drawings and writings. At Princeton, he has taught courses on subjects including Shakespeare, Michelangelo, Narcissus, Word and Image, and Comedy.
Gabrielle Hamilton is an American chef and author. She is the chef/owner of Prune, a restaurant in New York City, and the author of "Blood, Bones, and Butter," a memoir. Michiko Kakutani, reviewing Hamilton's book in the New York Times in February 2011 calls it "brilliantly written." Anthony Bourdain describes it as "simply the best memoir by a chef ever." Hamilton received her MFA in creative writing from the University of Michigan and received the James Beard award for best chef in New York City in 2011.
Anita Lo, a second generation Chinese-American, is the chef and owner of Annisa in New York City. She is one of the most respected chefs in the country, earning numerous accolades for her inventive contemporary American cuisine that reflects her multicultural upbringing and classic French training. Lo opened Annisa, in 2000. Food & Wine magazine named her one of ten “Best New Chefs in America” in 2001, and the Village Voice proclaimed Lo as “Best New Restaurant Chef.” In June 2009, after nearly ten years in business, Annisa suffered an unfortunate blow—a fire destroyed the restaurant entirely. In April 2010, after a complete renovation of the original Barrow Street location, Lo reopened Annisa. In October 2011, Lo released her long-awaited first cookbook, which highlights her passion for bringing simple, multicultural flavors to her American kitchen.
Department: Center for African American Studies