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100: Steph's Lookback & Lessons Learned So Far -- 9 Themes
I have been given so many gifts through the interviews I have shared with you here, from biscuits to basic life lessons. There have been many times I’ve teared up (I’m so sappy), and one of my favorite things each week is reliving a chat through the editing process. I smile at the computer, lots of times I’ll text them a hello, and I’ve also noticed some recurring themes. So as I considered, what the hell am I going to do for my 100th episode, I decided to just be me, sharing a few of those themes. So it’s just you and me today, from my house on a road thawing out from an epic freak Charleston snowstorm, so you’ll probably hear some trucks at some point. Anyway, I hope you’ll take some of these themes into the new year with you, delve into the archives for some episodes you missed, and I’ll be back in your earbuds or bluetooth in a few weeks with fresh content and a hearty appetite. Let’s dig in, shall we?
Gillian Zettler, Charleston Wine + Food Festival
It’s the most wonderful time of the year again, folks. I’m so happy to debut a new season of The Southern Fork, spring is springing in Charleston (hello, pollen), and we are in the middle of the Charleston Wine + Food Festival! I’m so proud to be a part of this festival and to celebrate with friends near and far as they visit my city, but since I’m up close and personal to this event, I know how much went into getting to this weekend! I thought you’d like to know some behind-the-scenes stuff too, and Gillian Zettler, the director of the festival, is at the helm of it all. Gillian and I first met years ago in Greenville when she was head of Euphoria Greenville, and I’ve watched her really blossom since taking over my beloved Charleston festival. She’s brought varied programming and a seriously good music taste into the fest just for starters, but it’s not all her. She has a team of people working all year to get here, and she’s quick to provide a shout out, so if you’re enjoying top-notch food and drink with me in Charleston this weekend, here’s what it took to get that wine in that glass.
Joe & Katy Kindred, & Craig Deihl. Hello, Sailor
My trip to Cornelius and Davidson, NC, was a trip down nostalgia’s lane. As a native Charlottean, I’d spent time at the lake growing up, and one of my first writing gigs was as a features writer at Lake Norman Times, so when I went to visit Joe and Katy Kindred at Kindred and Hello, Sailor, I was having all the feels checking out my old stomping grounds. But that was just the beginning -- friend and chef Craig Deihl, from the recently closed Charleston, SC faves Artisan Meat Share and Cypress, is now the CDC at Hello, Sailor, and then there was the calabash shrimp on the menu, the fried bologna sandwich, and oh, the hushpuppies. It’s a wonder I held it together for this interview. But it’s more than just about me and my memory lane here. Kindred, and now Hello, Sailor, are hot restaurants, and not just in the Queen City area, but with people such as the James Beard Foundation, Bon Appetit, and Eater. These restaurant teams craft a 360 experience that is grounded in exceptional food in laid back settings, and I am here to attest that the meals I had this day are two of the best I’ve had in a year of eating. And these people make me laugh, as you’ll hear in the following.