Jan 31 2016
Under The Table Supper Club with Professor David S...

Under The Table Supper Club with Professor David S...

Presented by Deckle Edge Literary Festival at Oak Table

Set for Sunday, January 31st starting at 6:30PM, Executive Chef Todd R Woods and Sous Chef Charles Stricklin will collaborate with Professor David Shields.

Shield’s academic resume is impressive: The McClintock Professor of Southern Letters at USC, he teaches courses on early American literature, Southern literature and Southern foodways. He has written books on American poetry in the 17th and 18th centuries, on an early 19th century USC French professor who pioneered the wine-making industry in America and on the history of Carolina Gold rice and rice culture in South Carolina.

But his research into lost foods draws the most attention. Shields spends countless hours in the basement of Thomas Cooper Library, scouring old agricultural journals. When he latches on to one subject – such as the Bradford watermelon – he finds where and how it was best grown. In the case of the watermelon, he found remnants of the variety still being grown in Sumter County and has spread the gospel of its tastiness. In other cases, he has worked with scientists in a gene-based process that can lead to de-extinction of a variety.

“For starters, basically, there is nothing basic about David,” said Brian Ward, a horticulture specialist with Clemson University’s Coastal Research and Education Center, who has worked alongside Shields on several projects.

“In a world of food revolution where chefs and growers alike are realizing that what once was is now more important than anything, David is a superhero. … When he finds a lead, he tracks it down, and if germplasm exists and he is able to obtain it and verify its validity, he entrusts seed to people like me who are specialists in bringing the germplasm back. He’s kind of like an Indiana Jones of old foodways.”

Glenn Roberts, founder of Columbia’s Anson Mills, was so impressed with Shields he tapped him as chairman of the Carolina Gold Rice Foundation, which pushes the development of that heirloom grain and other historic foods.

“There’s no one like him in America,” Roberts said. “He has the intellectual property and then goes out in the field and does the work, actually harvesting African sugar cane.”

Heirloom foods were a salvation for Shields. He was at a mid-career signpost, waiting for direction a little more than a decade ago. A tenured professor at The Citadel, he could have been comfortable writing or contributing to more books on literature. – The State Newspaper 

Read more here: http://www.thestate.com/living/article13726307.html#storylink=cpy
The dinner is $68 per person excluding gratuity and a cash bar will be available. A portion of the proceeds will benefit Deckle Edge Columbia’s Book Festival.

The inaugural Deckle Edge Literary Festival will be held February 19-21, 2016, in Columbia, South Carolina. The weekend-long festival will feature readings, book signings, panel presentations, exhibitors, writers’ workshops, activities for children and young adult readers, and a wide range of other literary events for many interests and all ages. The Deckle Edge literary festival will gather and foster the diverse branches of our region’s literary community through an inclusive weekend of public events and programming for readers, writers, and lovers of the written word.

WHO: The Oak Table, 1221 Main Street
WHAT: Under the Table Dinner: Five Course 
WHEN: Sunday, Janaury 31st at 6:30PM
HOW: $68 per person plus gratuity

Admission Info

The dinner is $68 per person excluding gratuity and a cash bar will be available. A portion of the proceeds will benefit Deckle Edge Columbia’s Book Festival.

Dates & Times

2016/01/31 - 2016/01/31

Location Info

Oak Table

1221 Main Street, Columbia, SC 29201