Edward Lee | Buttermilk Graffiti: A Chef's Journey to Discover America's New Melting Pot Cuisine

Edward Lee | Buttermilk Graffiti: A Chef's Journey to Discover America's New Melting Pot Cuisine

Monday, May 14, 2018 7:00 PM

Highland Inn Ballroom Lounge
644 North Highland Avenue Northeast, Atlanta, GA 30306

Join us for our second annual benefit for GLOBAL GROWERS, this year featuring the Korean-born, Brooklyn-bred, Kentucky chef and restaurateur, and author of Buttermilk Graffiti, EDWARD LEE, in conversation with food and beer writer BOB TOWNSEND of the AJC.

“Thoughtful, well researched, and truly moving. Shines a light on what it means to cook and eat American food, in all its infinitely nuanced and ever-evolving glory.”

—Anthony Bourdain
Named one of Publishers Weekly’s Top 10 Food Books for Spring 2018

American food is the story of mash-ups. Immigrants arrive, cultures collide, and out of the push-pull come exciting new dishes and flavors. But for Edward Lee, who, like Anthony Bourdain or Gabrielle Hamilton, is as much a writer as he is a chef, that first surprising bite is just the beginning. What about the people behind the food? What about the traditions, the innovations, the memories?

A natural-born storyteller, Lee decided to hit the road and spent two years uncovering fascinating narratives from every corner of the country. There’s a Cambodian couple in Lowell, Massachusetts, and their efforts to re-create the flavors of their lost country. A Uyghur café in New York’s Brighton Beach serves a noodle soup that seems so very familiar and yet so very exotic—one unexpected ingredient opens a window onto an entirely unique culture. A beignet from Café du Monde in New Orleans, as potent as Proust’s madeleine, inspires a narrative that tunnels through time, back to the first Creole cooks, then forward to a Korean rice-flour hoedduck and a beignet dusted with matcha.


Capacity at the historic in-town venue is limited. Tickets for the evening are $35 and include a signed, first edition copy of Buttermilk Graffiti, with a portion of the proceeds going to Global Growers, a non-profit working to increase the number of food producers who create access to healthy, sustainably-grown food and also to prepare farmers to be competitive in their local marketplace.

Adding to the festivities this year will be Chinese-American Chef George Yu (Noona, Taiyo, Suzy Siu's and Double Dragon) and Mexican-American Chef Andy Gonzales (Steinbeck's Ale House), who will weave Chinese, Latino, Texan and Southern flavors into a distinctly American melting pot of a pop-up. And of course, the ballroom's full-service bar.