Left Bank Books' Upcoming Tasty Events

Apr 26, 2010 at 2:29 pm
click to enlarge Cat Cora is coming to St. Louis. - Image via
Cat Cora is coming to St. Louis.
"It seems only natural that this increased interest in what we eat and where we eat it would lead to a need for more literature on the subject, which includes new cookbooks, of course, but also includes great food writers, authors who write about how people experience food," explains Left Bank Books events coordinator Danielle Borsch. "That's a really cool thing, that food can be an experience as much as anything else, and when people want to share this experience, then, voila, we have an event."

That increased interest in food shows in Left Bank Books' upcoming events schedule, which is loaded with food and books.

First up, Karen Tack and Alan Richardson will bring cupcakes from their new book, What's New, Cupcake to life at Left Banks Central West End location (399 North Euclid Avenue) on Tuesday, April 27, at 7 p.m. Tack and Richardson with do a presentation with a cupcake decorating demonstration. Afterward, while they sign books, guests can sample the sweets.

On Monday, May 3, the bookstore will sponsor River Styx Art & Literary Feast, celebrating the literary magazine's 35th anniversary. The party happens at Duff's beginning at 7:30. $45 will bring you dinner, live music and readings.

Celebrity chef Cat Cora is coming to town on June 7 to promote her new cookbook, Classics with a Twist, with a 12:30 luncheon at Moulin (co-sponsored by Sauce magazine) featuring samples of her recipes. The $65 ticket includes tastings from Sam Adams Brewing, wine and an autographed copy of the book.

That night, Cora will give a free presentation at Mad Art Gallery at 7 p.m. Prior to the presentation, Friends of Left Bank Books Literary Society members are invited to a reception with Cora, catered by L'Ecole Culinaire.

The downtown location of Left Bank Books (321 North 10th Street_ continues its lunchtime reading groups with author Emily Giffen on May 25. Participants can order CityGourmet box lunches through Left Bank up to 48 hours before the event, or they may bring their own.

Finally, while there aren't many details available at this time, this summer Left Bank will celebrate food related to Missouri's favorite literary son. The July 11 event will feature a lunch inspired by Twain's Feast by Andrew Beahrs, who will be at the event to discuss his book and read passages. From the publisher's description of the book:
In the winter of 1879, Mark Twain paused during a European tour to compose a fantasy menu of the American dishes he missed the most. In Twain's Feast, Andrew Beahrs chooses eight of these forgotten regional specialties, retracing Twain's footsteps as he sets out to discover whether the author's favorite foods can still be found on American tables. Twain's menu, he finds, was also a memoir and a map. Weaving together passages from Twain's famous works and Beahrs's own adventures, Twain's Feast takes us on a journey into America's past, to a time when foods taken fresh from grasslands, woods, and waters were at the heart of American cooking.

Borsch expects the literary food events to continue. "We have noticed more and more books on the subject of the vast amount of crap that's in the food we often eat (Fast Food Nation by Eric Schlossler, books by Michael Pollan, etc.), but there are also a lot of food writers that have been covering the more personal and possibly even emotional side of eating. We have Ruth Reichl, who has been writing food memoirs for years, covering everything from her mother's poisonous cooking disasters to the often humorous secret world of being a food critic. But we also have newer writers, like Julie Powell who explore other ways of how food and cooking can change a person's life. The growing interest in celebrity chefs has also increased the glamour, I think, of food and food writing."