Saturday, October 01, 2016

Birmingham Public Library to Host 2016 Eat Drink Read Write Festival October 1-7

What: 2016 Eat Drink Read Write Festival
When: Saturday, October 1–Friday, October 7, 2016
Where: Central Library
Details: Six-day schedule online at

If you’re the type of person who relishes eating adventurous foods, mark your calendar for October 1-7 when the Birmingham Public Library (BPL) hosts its 2016 Eat Drink Read Write festival (EDRW).

This year’s EDRW festival is dedicated to the idea that taking a risk and seeking out adventurous foods can result in great culinary experiences, said Brandon C. Smith, coordinator of the event.

“Whether it’s trying a Thai restaurant located in a gas station, buying ribs that have been cooked in a 55-gallon steel drum smoker in a parking lot, or foraging for wild blackberries along an old fence line, some of the best meals I have ever had involved taking a little risk,” said Smith, manager of the Eastwood Branch Library.

Headlining the 2016 festival is Chef Bryant Terry of Oakland, California, who has built a national reputation as a vegan chef and food activist, Smith said.

Terry is a 2015 James Beard Foundation Leadership Award-winning chef and author known for his activism to create a healthy, just, and sustainable food system. He is currently Chef-in-Residence at the Museum of the African Diaspora in San Francisco. His work has been featured in the New York Times, the Washington Post, the San Francisco Chronicle, NPR’s radio program All Things Considered, and many other publications. Fast Company magazine named Chef Terry one of the “9 People Who are Changing the Future of Food” in its April 2016 issue.

Bryant’s fourth book, Afro Vegan, published by Ten Speed Press/Random House in April 2014, was named by as one of the best cookbooks for 2014. It was nominated for an NAACP Image Award in the Outstanding Literary Work category. Read more about Bryant at his website,

“Chef Bryant Terry is probably the foremost vegan chef in the U.S. right now,” said Smith of BPL. “He is known as being a leader in the area of food advocacy and working to change the conversation on food in our country.”

Here is the schedule of events for the 2016 Eat Drink Read Write festival

Saturday, October 1, 2016, 6:00-8:00 p.m., Central Library
An Evening with Chef Bryant Terry

In illustrating why he is known as a premier food-justice activist, Terry will present a dynamic program in which he will discuss the need for a healthy, just, and sustainable food system as well as his passion for good food. Expect to be entertained with stories of how jazz, reggae, and soul music have influenced Chef Terry’s cooking. His unconventional presentation style with hip-hop interludes will delight you. Several local restaurants will offer samples of adventurous dishes for attendees to enjoy. This event will require $20 paid admission. Tickets are available at

Monday, October 3, 2016, 6:30-7:30 p.m., Central Library
Children’s Adventurous Food Art Reception

Delve into the minds of local children’s interpretations of adventurous food through this juried exhibit of artwork located on the First Floor Gallery at the Central Library. The artwork was done by young patrons of BPL. The Junior League of Birmingham’s Project Yummy Van will provide healthy snacks and educate the young attendees on healthy eating and skills useful in the kitchen. Free admission.

Tuesday, October 4, 2016, 6:30-7:30 p.m., Central Library/Linn-Henley Research Library/Arrington Auditorium/4th floor
Fermented & Foraged Food Panel Discussion
Pete Halupka and Lindsay Whiteaker of Harvest Roots Farm, Forage, & Ferment, Cameron Strouss of Deep Roots Apotheké, and Chef Thyme Randle of the Underground Cooking Academy will discuss fermented and foraged foods in a panel discussion moderated by Birmingham Magazine’s managing editor, Carla Jean Whitley. Attendees will sample kombucha, kimchi, sauerkraut, and curtido from Harvest Roots, tonics from Deep Roots Apotheké, and lacto-fermented pickled vegetables from the Underground Cooking Academy. Free admission.

Thursday. October 6, 2016, 7:30-8:30 p.m., Wine Loft, 2200 1st Ave. N.
Happy Hour with Literary Cocktails

The Birmingham Public Library’s Young Professionals board is presenting an evening of literary cocktails at the Wine Loft with complimentary hors d’oeuvres. Several of Birmingham’s top bartenders will compete in a contest in which they will create cocktails inspired by works of Latin American literature. Comedian Funny Maine will emcee this event that will take place in the heart of October’s Art Crawl festival. There is no admission for this event, but attendees must be 21 or older.

Friday, October 7, 2016, 6:30 p.m., Central Library
Bards & Brews Slam

The library’s popular Bards & Brews spoken word poetry and craft beer tasting event will close the festival. Poets will compete in a slam for cash prizes while attendees sample beer from craft breweries including SweetWater Brewing, Cahaba Brewing Co., and Band of Brothers, as well as light hors d'oeuvres from Jim ‘N Nick’s, Babalu Tapas & Tacos, and the Ranch House. Voice Porter, a performance artist and experienced poetry slam emcee, will host this fantastic evening at the Central Library, which is presented with assistance from the Alabama State Council on the Arts. Free admission.

The 2016 Eat Drink Read Write festival was made possible by BPL partners including the Birmingham Public Library Young Professionals Board, Deep Roots Apotheké, Dining Out with Comedienne Joy, Coca-Cola Bottling United, Jim 'N Nicks Bar-B-Q, Silvertron Café, Tutwiler Hampton Inn & Suites, Harvest Roots Farm, Forage & Ferment, Michael's Restaurant, Kalisha DigiMedia, Golden Flake, the Junior League of Birmingham, SweetWater Brewing, Cahaba Brewing, Band of Brothers Brewing, Cathead Vodka, Ranch House, Tropicaleo, Babalu Tapas & Tacos, Revolve Kitchen & Brew, Jersey Boys, Edolyn's Pies, Cowboy Chicken, Redeaux's Café at City Hall, and Not Just Catering.

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