August Contest: Inspiring People to Connect Through Food


“One of the delights of life is eating with friends, second to that is talking about eating. And, for an unsurpassed double whammy, there is talking about eating while you are eating with friends.” – Author Laurie Colwin

It’s no secret: we love food. Members of staff have been known to text pictures of their dinner entrees to each other. One of the most commonly used phrases around the school: “you have to try this!” And there’s a reason why our favorite vacation destinations include France (where drinking wine and eating cheese at 10am is socially acceptable), Greece (where multi-course marathon meals are a daily occurrence), and any wine country on the map (next up: Italian countryside by Vespa).

Now, perhaps we’re just gluttons who can never say no to a ripe, sticky peach or a bowl of risotto flecked with fresh herbs, but we’d like to think our food memories amount to more than a list of ingredients and recipes. When we recall meals from our childhood, exotic vacation spreads, or the first real bottle of wine we ever ordered at a restaurant, there’s something else we can envision besides the sustenance on the plate: the people who were there in the kitchen and at the table with us.

Bite into a flaky spanakopita and Owner Maria Kopsidas remembers the thrilling feeling she got helping her grandmother, mother, and a bevy of aunts prepare for one of her grandmother’s spectacular dinner parties. Cooking began up to two weeks in advance, and each and every item was made by hand so Maria was enlisted, at age five, to stir béchamel over the stove standing on a stool. When she turned six they graduated her to squeezing water out of salted eggplant. By seven, her grandmother had taught her how to make a spanakopita triangle–at a large wooden table in a tiny kitchen in DC, a large bowl of spinach filling in front of them, fillo dough hiding under a damp towel, a miniature brush swimming in a bowl of melted butter, quietly making perfect spanakopita triangles.

Chef Brad will readily admit his grandmother’s potato soup was “quite possibly horrible” by professional chef standards, but says it’s one of his favorite dishes from childhood because he vividly recalls scooping the ladle below the surface and coming out with thick spoonfuls of warmth and comfort in liquid form (which he says is what defines he style of cooking: “full of love and butter”).

So, we made our goal here at Cookology simple: to encourage people to connect over a great meal. All of our cooking classes, wine tastings, and dinners are designed to help you cultivate memories with your own friends and family, side-by-side in the kitchen, and face-to-face at the table. We hope our classes inspire every adult and child to make cooking (and eating!) a lifelong passion.

We know many of you who have joined us in our kitchen have your own memories of food, cooking, and special meals, and we want to hear about them. Now through August 31 post or send in your stories, pictures, or videos about your favorite moments at the stove or around your dinner table, and we’ll choose one winner to receive two seats to a Chef’s Table Tasting Event or Date Night cooking class, and two more winners will receive bottles of Italian wine from Il Pioppo.

Leave your entry in the comments section below, post to Facebook, or e-mail your entry.

Good luck, and Bon Apetit!


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