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the faces of southern farming tastemakers: five businesses raise the culinary bar in savannah

an evening of opera you’re invited

food blogger elena rosemond-hoerr redefines southern cooking August 2013 / Issue 3

Table of contents


Letter from the co-editors

6 Currently

Behind the Scenes


See what’s inspiring the co-ediotrs this month

The Persistence of Southern Cooking


A personal memoir


Cooked with Love

One food truck hits the streets in Baltimore


Redefining Southern Cooking

With North Carolina food blogger Elena Rosemond-Hoerr

Paprika Southern

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The Faces of Southern Farming

We explore the growing trend of independent farmers with the Deckers of Root Bottom Farm in Asheville, NC




Five south Georgia businesses who are contributing to an emerging food scene

Art-Working Responsibly Artist Allen Peterson


Trou Normand: Palate Cleanser A Parisian travel log


An Evening of Opera

Styling a Savannah dinner party

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The Gallery P.S.

Paprika Southern Recommends

Issue 3 / August, 2013

Letter from the co-editors We are occasionally asked if Paprika Southern is a food magazine. Understandable, since we named it after a spice. In fact, we considered several food-related options when brainstorming a title for this magazine, but “paprika,” in addition to striking just the connotative note we wanted, seemed one that didn’t—necessarily—scream “foodie.” It is appropriate, though, that a magazine named after a popular spice should have a food and drink-oriented issue. Working on this month has been an amazing experience. We’ve had the chance to talk with so many interesting and inspiring people, people who are proactively working to advance the food scene in their communities, people who encourage creative and mindful eating, and who are truly passionate about what they do. We’ve been inspired by all the people in the pages of our August issue, and we hope you will be as well.

The Team Bevin valentine Co-editor

siobhan egan Co-editor

Krystal Pittman Baker Advertising

if you are interested in purchasing photographs from the magazine, please contact mail@paprikasouthern.com Paprika Southern

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Bess Bieluczyk was born and raised in the Connecticut suburbs. She received her MFA in Photography from Savannah College of Art and Design and her BA from Sarah Lawrence College in Bronxville, NY. She is an active, exhibiting photographer and an administrative coordinator at Johns Hopkins University.

Josh Jalbert is a professor of photography at Savannah College of Art and Design. He received a BFA in photography from the Art Institute of Boston at Lesley University and an MFA from the University of Oregon. He is currently pursing a Ph.D. at the European Graduate Schoool.

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Anthony Garzilli is Editor/Manager of the Jasper County Sun, a weekly newspaper in Ridgeland, SC Garzilli, 35, of Savannah, GA., is a native of Bronx, NY, and has worked as a sports reporter and editor for 13 years. He’s won four first-place SC Press Association awards for writing excellence. He’s married, has a 1-year-old niece, and listens to Pearl Jam.

Kelly McCarty has lived in Roanoke, Virginia her entire life. The kind of Southern she is more like Duck Dynasty than Gone with the Wind. She once uttered the words, “Don’t give any moonshine to the dog.” Kelly has a B.A. in Communication Studies and Spanish from Hollins University.

Jeanne Svendson is an explorer extraordinaire! Give her a map and a destination and she will find her way there. Jeanne’s Louisiana roots and love for the South led her to SCAD where she earned her B.F.A. in photography. She plans to open a gallery, Jeanne Elizabeth Fine Art, in 2014.

Issue 3 / August, 2013

Behind the scenes in August

The delectable treats whipped up by Amy and Laura of Maison de Macarons. (The passionfruit macaron, mentioned in the article, is the photo on the left!)

Bevin photographing for our An Evening of Opera feature.

A summer storm trapped us inside Savannah wine shop Le Chai while we interviewed owner Christian Depken.

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An up-close peek at Kelly Spivey working on her small-batch chocolate bars.

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Paprika Southern traveled to Mashall, NC in July for our cover story!

Siobhan photographing at B & G Honey Farms in Register, GA.

We love sharing sneak peeks of what we’re up to throughout the month, as well as connecting with our readers! Stay in touch and a get a behind-the-scenes look at what’s coming up by following us Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. Follow paprika southern

Instagram / Twitter / Facebook page 7

Issue 3 / August, 2013

Currently... See what’s inspiring the co-editors this month!

I’ve had my eye on this cookbook by Deborah Madison for a while. I love the idea of educating myself about vegetables and how to use them so I can make better use of my trips to the farmers’ market.


I’ve been enjoying watching Longmire, a Wyoming-set show about the sheriff in a small town this summer. If you dig cowboy hats, this is the show for you.

Talk about a summer read with some teeth. I return to it each year.. Bonjour Tristesse perfectly captures the heat of summer under the French sun.

Paprika Southern

Midi rings are having a major moment, and I want to start building my collection. I love the simplicity and delicacy of this style, as well as the potential to mix and match.

I’m completely feeling southwestern-inspired prints for late summer and early fall and have been mentally planning imaginary outfits around this skirt from Ruche the past few weeks.

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I never get tired of listening to these often overlooked tunes from the 60s. Have you seen the documentary Searching for Sugarman? If you haven’t, you need to. It’s all about the mystery surrounding this fantastic folk musician from Detroit.

While recently sorting through some of my old stuff at my parents house in NY I came accross some of my old friendship bracelets circa 1992. I immediately started wearing them again because I’m a nerd and still think they are totally cool. If you think yourself less of a nerd take a look at this more updated version from Madewell. I’m extremely excited about this cookbook from Sarah and Morgan Decker who just happen to be this month’s cover story. The book is full of delicious recipes. Sarah herself actually made me the veggie lasagna on my recent trip to Asheville to do the story. Oh, and did I mention the beautiful photography by Sarah as well?

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This new Netflix-exclusive show from creator Jenji Kohan of Weeds fame tells the story of a privileged woman from NY who gets sent to prison for a crime she participated in years earlier. The show will have you laughing, crying, and will also make you mad. Totally worth watching!!! Issue 3 / August, 2013

The Persistence of Southern Cooking by Kelly McCarty

M uch

has been written about Southern food, about how delicious it is, how odd it can be (it’s true, we do things with Jell-O that you wouldn’t believe), how it makes Southerners fatter, how it reflects our beauty and resilience but also our sordid, blood-soaked history. Sometimes a lowly poor-person food like cornbread becomes such a tortured metaphor for the South’s entire history that it barely seems possible to butter a piece and enjoy it. Still, it is hard to imagine that anyone is as emotional about Italian subs as Southerners are about biscuits. Food is a collective experience for people born south of the Mason-Dixon Line. Every Southerner knows that peanut brittle, fudge and coconut cakes mean Christmas and watermelon, corn on the cob and potato salad are summer and family reunions. Ever since my family stopped having reunions, I have been threatening to crash other people’s family reunions--with a homemade pound cake, of course. We all have an opinion on sweet versus savory cornbread, if grits taste good and whether or not Southern Living magazine should be defining states like Delaware and Oklahoma as Southern. My take? Cornbread should be sweet and even when slathered in butter, grits are disgusting. Southern Living Paprika Southern

needs to toss out Delaware and Maryland. Texas and Oklahoma can stay on as Southwestern and Florida squeaks in on the technicality of being the farthest South, even though only the top part is culturally Southern. There is a grand past to southern food, but there is also a deep personal significance. Nothing defines southern food to me like my paternal grandparents. My grandfather Billy was an avid gardener who brought green beans, potatoes and corn from the earth to the plate long before the locavore movement was cool. He took the decidedly un-southern stance of refusing to drink tea of any sort because he was forced to drink it in the Navy, but he loved Tang because it was the drink of astronauts. Billy knew that a maraschino cherry could turn a bowl of ice cream into a special occasion and he taught me the trick of putting salt on fresh, cold watermelon. But it was my grandmother June who was the true embodiment of all things southern. She did not approve of contemporary Christian music, people wearing shorts to church, or her neighbor’s habit of plucking the leaves off their shared tomato plants. Even in her eighties, she was always “done up,” wearing brightly colored suits and full make-up, page 10

Untitled 33, 2010, Page Perrault

slowly in the South and throughout my childhood, we ate Sunday dinner at my grandparent’s house. My mouth is watering just thinking about roast beef, squash, butter beans, potatoes, and ham biscuits. No store-bought potato salad has ever held a candle to hers. She made a version of chicken tenders with crushed Rice Krispies and seasoned salt that my great-grandmother came up with long before chicken tenders were invented. June used some kind of grandmotherly magic Nothing was more Southern about June to bake pound cakes with margarine that than her cooking. The old ways fade were still far superior to pound cakes I’ve even to go to the doctor to get her blood drawn. June once dumped trash in the town manager’s office because the town refused to pick up the garbage from the alley behind her house. Sometimes you get the magnolia, sometimes you get the steel. June always had dishes of candy in her living room--candy corn for Halloween, gum drops for Christmas and candy heart for Valentine’s Day. Peppermints were the mainstay.

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made with five sticks of full-fat butter. My brother once ordered green beans at a steakhouse and announced, “These are not like June’s green beans,” when they bought him steamed green beans. He had only ever eaten southern-style, cooked to death green beans. Thanksgiving and Christmas were truly special occasions at June’s house. The angel biscuits that she made for the holidays may have actually been sent straight from heaven. Her pumpkin pie (the secret ingredient is apple butter) is the best I’ve ever had. When I make her Christmas coconut cake, which is only a boxed mix cake dressed up with a frosting of Cool Whip, powdered sugar, sour cream, and frozen coconut, it still gets more raves than my elaborate scratch-made cakes. We looked forward to her Christmas baking all year. The variety included fudge, peanut brittle, peanut butter cookies topped with Hershey’s kisses, spice cake with butterscotch chips and brownies with a cream cheese topping. She also made something that Pinterest describes as “no-bake oatmeal cookies,” but Southerners call “preacher cookies.” June always told me that the reason was they were easy and quick to throw together when your preacher came to visit. The only savory holiday goodies were oyster crackers seasoned with dill and homemade Chex mix from the recipe on the back of the cereal box. The Chex mix is the easiest thing in the world to make, but I thought my father and Paprika Southern

brother were going to disown me when I made some for a friend’s birthday and didn’t make enough for them. Billy has been gone since 2005. We lost June recently, in the month she was named for, after a short and unexpected illness. She was raised as a Methodist but had been a member of the local Baptist church for more than sixty years. Her funeral was a grand Baptist production--hymns were sung, two preachers spoke, and her beloved Mary Martha Sunday school class turned out in full force. Southern tradition dictates that a meal is served at the church after the services are conducted at the graveside. It’s not at all proper for the bereaved to bring a dish, but my grandmother was a Southern lady who was eighty-five and a Baptist. A spectacular funeral is something that she would have wanted. So I got in the kitchen and made a chocolate cake with a poured fudgy icing and a blackberry jam cake, loosely based on my great-grandmother’s recipe. I stirred jam into batter, thinking, “This is the last thing that I will ever do for her.” It seems like an odd thing to say, but the food at my grandmother’s funeral was absolutely amazing. Little old church ladies can turn butter beans into the best thing you ever put in your mouth. There was sweet potato casserole, several takes on macaroni and cheese and delicious cheesy potatoes topped with cornflakes. page 12

It was obvious that the church ladies swapped their recipes, because everything was a slight variation on my grandmother’s dishes, even a version of the sweet and tart pineapple-orange Jell-O that is my brother’s favorite dessert. The savory food was beyond delicious but many of the cakes on the dessert table were not homemade. My blackberry jam cake was the first thing to go. I think June would have been proud. It is a sad and difficult thing, knowing that my grandparents’ era has passed. I’ll never have another Sunday dinner at their little yellow house and if I want the pumpkin pie this Thanksgiving, I’ll have to be the one to make it. The traditions of southern food help me keep my grandparents’ memories alive. I think of Billy whenever someone offers me a homegrown tomato. I am not personally a fan of tomatoes, but if someone offers you one, particularly in a rainy summer like this one, they are making a sacrifice of true love. I have become a fairly good home baker in recent years and I have taken up the mantle of the Christmas baking extravaganza, making no fewer than four types of cookies and two cakes. June will never truly be gone as long as I can make her recipes. The greatest compliment that my baking has ever received was, “I haven’t had a cake like this since my grandmother was alive” because I know how hard it is to live up to the memory of a southern grandma. page 13

Pumpkin Pie Recipe courtesy of Kelly McCarty Growing up during the Great Depression, my late grandfather, Billy, never liked his mother’s pumpkin pie because she couldn’t afford to buy spices. But my great-grandmother’s pumpkin pie made him a fan. The apple butter produces a velvety smooth, uniquely spiced pie. 2 cups canned pumpkin 1 cup brown sugar (firmly packed) ½ teaspoon salt 1 teaspoon ginger ¼ teaspoon cloves 1/8 teaspoon allspice 3 eggs (lightly beaten) 1 cup evaporated milk ½ cup apple butter ½ package refrigerated pie crusts or the very ambitious can substitute their favorite homemade single crust pie recipe Use a 9-inch pie pan. Follow refrigerated pie crust package instructions for a filled pie. Combine first 6 ingredients. Mix well. Add eggs, milk and apple butter. Pour into prepared pie pan. Bake at 425 degrees for 40 minutes. After the first 15 minutes, use a pie shield or aluminum foil to prevent excessive browning of the crust. Pie is done when a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean. Issue 3 / August, 2013

Cooked with Love by bess bieluczyk

Paprika Southern

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is a sticky

J uly

evening —

there is no other kind in Baltimore during the summer—in what looks like a sherbet-colored camper, mother-daughter co-owners Jen Cullen and Pat Dembeck are hard at work, on the grill and manning the order window of Busia’s Kitchen food truck. “Busia” is an Americanized version of the Polish word for grandmother. The truck was named in memory of the woman who “passed on her love of food and cooking to us,” according to Jen, who also says “Our favorite place to park our truck is the Lauraville Tuesday Market. This is where we got our start 5 years ago. Each June, when the market opens, it feels like we are coming home.” The market crowd seems to agree as my dining companion snags the last pita, and an obliging customer borrows a marker from Pat to “86” it on the menu board. Why join Baltimore’s growing food truck posse, I ask Jen? “We decided to open a food truck instead of a restaurant because it’s a growing trend to bring goods and services to customers rather than having customers come to you. The advantages of this are being able to take our food to a wide variety of customers and areas, having a flexible schedule, and being invited to community events.” Are there downsides to running a restaurant on wheels? Jen recalls an incident on the road, “We were driving up a steep incline and realized that the catering cabinet in the truck was not locked. Needless to say, all of the food crashed to the floor while we were in transit.” Sometimes kids also chase and call after the pastel van, mistaking it for an off-duty ice cream truck, but that’s a more pleasant problem. I question the inspiration behind the Polish menu. “Because we love it and Baltimore only has a few Slavic restaurants,” Jen succinctly states. To my knowledge, Busia’s Kitchen is the only food truck serving Polish fare. page 15

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Though the Polish population in Baltimore has dwindled over the years, it has left its mark on the city and a craving for pierogi is its wake. For the uninitiated, a pierogi is similar to a dumpling and can have a variety of savory fillings. I’m in luck as my favorite, cheese and potato, are on the menu this evening as part of the plentiful “Polish Platter.” They arrive slathered in fried onions and a dollop of sour cream. In my opinion, you could top a shoe in fried onions and sour cream and it would still taste OK, but to stretch the comparison, if these pierogi were a shoe, I would not be able to afford them—they are delectable and clearly handmade. The dough is light as is the potato fillPaprika Southern

ing. It is true comfort food. Mine are accompanied by a cucumber salad with a refreshing, tart dressing and a fluffy pancake dotted with crispy apple pieces and a light cinnamon-sugar topping. Another platter option is the traditional Slavic stuffed cabbage, golabki. The filling platter is a wonderful way to sample a variety of items. Those not tempted by Eastern European fare can also choose a ribeye cheese steak—one of Pat and Jen’s favorite dishes—or even a Mediterranean pita. My dining companion chose a chicken pita and consumed it with such gusto that I was unable to get photo before all that repage 16

mained in the wrapper were remnants of tomato and traces of tzatziki sauce. “The food on our truck is unique because we serve high quality, hand-picked food. Some of our food items are very labor intensive, such as pierogi. So in essence, all of our menu items are cooked with love,” says Jen. And I have to agree—you can taste it.

visit busia’s kitchen online www.busiaskitchen.com

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redefining southern cooking One Recipe at a Time by bevin valentine

D o a web search for “ southern

food” and you’re bound to find a lot of fried chicken, fried pickles, and fried everything else. However, when that search is amended to “southern food blog,” one of the first results that appears is something a little different. It is Elena Brent Rosemund-Hoerr’s food blog, Biscuits and Such, and, in a landscape saturated (if you will) with deep-fried everything, it is a breath of fresh air. Elena grew up in Durham, North Carolina and moved to Baltimore in 2004 to attend Maryland Institute College of Art to study photography. It was her first experience living outside of the South and in a city. After graduating, she remained in Maryland, but found herself missing home and experiencing the culture shock of being a displaced Southerner. Working in a job she disliked, that had nothing to do with her chosen field of photography, Elena hit on the idea that if she could just make some country-style steak—the same one her grandmother made—she would feel better.

Photograph courtesy of Elena Rosemond-Hoerr

fascinated by—food blogs, it was in this direction she turned to fill in her knowledge, but was disappointed by the dearth of blogs with both good information and aesthetics that focused on southern food. Frustrated with this void on the Internet, and armed with a background in photography and a significant other, Dan, who was a web designer, she decided to fill it herself. Biscuits and Such was born in 2008.

A Southerner born and bred, Elena wanted She—sort of—remembered her grand- to use her blog to bring her childhood memmother’s recipe, but found a few gaps. ories of North Carolina home-cooking into Having recently discovered—and been her kitchen in Maryland. Whether steamPaprika Southern

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ing crabs, pickling, or making barbeque Eastern North Carolina style, she strives to stay true to what she identifies as the roots of southern cooking, always choosing seasonal, fresh ingredients. Shopping at farmers’ markets, her local co-op, and Whole Foods, she makes a point to use only the highest quality ingredients she can find. Her favorite core ingredients—red pepper flakes, sea salt, olive oil, butter, garlic, onions, apple cider vinegar—serve as the foundations of her recipes, fleshed out with whatever’s in season, whether it be pumpkins in the fall or tomatoes in summer (at the time of our interview in July, she was considering instituting a minimum tomato consumption per day for herself and her husband due to their unexpected bounty in the garden). It is a tenet of Biscuits and Such that southern cooking is rooted in what’s fresh, what’s local, and what’s available. Take southern favorite shrimp and grits, for example. Though it is now possible to find highpriced versions in restaurants throughout the South and beyond, the dish has humble beginnings as fishermen’s fare. When shrimpers in the lowcountry came in from early morning work, they threw the day’s catch together with grits for breakfast or lunch. It was fresh, and, most importantly, it was there. Further, she points out that foods like fried chicken, that have come to be iconic of southern cuisine, were, traditionally, never eaten every day. They were special occasion foods, reserved for celebrations. Elena states, “I think Americans page 19

need to remember, and [what] Southerners in particular need, is to get back to a connection to where our food comes from, an emphasis on eating whole, real foods, and a determined effort to make foods yourself and make foods from scratch…I want to get back to the roots of what makes southern food special and not a caricature of the South.” When Elena and Dan moved back to North Carolina (they now live in Wilmington) in 2012, it was a kind of homecoming. She no longer had to cook all the recipes she remembered from growing up herself, she could simply go to a restaurant to find good biscuits or country-style steak. This newfound culinary largess left her conflicted about her blog—she no longer had to bring North Carolina cooking into her kitchen to have it, it was outside her door. What had once been a necessity seemed redundant and, in searching for a way to refocus Biscuits and Such, she hit upon the idea for her Taste of North Carolina project. She took a daunting task—for each county (North Carolina has 100), she would research and cook a recipe. In some cases she bases the recipe on an ingredient that is widely available (Wayne County, for example, is the home of Mount Olive, so she did pickles), it could be something unique to the history of that county, and at other times it will focus on ingredients that are part of the contemporary culture of the county. With ninety-five counties left to go, this project will undoubtedly keep Elena busy for years. Issue 3 / August, 2013

Roasted Tomato and Shrimp Grits

courtesy of elena rosemond-hoerr

tomato sauce: grits: 2 cups coarse grits 3 cups water 2 cups heavy cream 2 cups milk 1 cup grated sharp cheddar cheese 1/2 tbsp white pepper 1/2 tbsp kosher salt juice of 1 lemon

Paprika Southern

2-3 large heirloom tomatoes 3 tbsp salted butter 1/4 cup brown sugar 1 white onion 4-6 strips bacon 1 tbsp hot sauce (I used a habanero sauce) dash of salt dash of red pepper flakes dash of smoked paprika dash of pepper 1 pound of fresh, raw, shrimp page 20

In a heavy pan melt butter and brown sugar over VERY low heat. When the butter has browned add in tomatoes, and stir well. Simmer on countertop for 15-20 minutes, and then roast in a 300 degree oven for an additional 20. In another, larger, pan (this is where having a cast iron collection comes in handy) cook bacon. Set aside. Dice onions and cook in bacon drippings over low heat. When the onions are caramelized add in the crumbled bacon, hot sauce, and tomato mixture. Add in seasoning. Continue to simmer. Clean and peel shrimp. Boil until just barely pink, and then strain and add to the tomato sauce. Simmer all together for an additional 20-30 minutes. While the sauce is simmering, bring heavy cream and water to a slow boil. Stir in grits and continue stirring as the grits thicken. Once the grits are thick remove from heat and stir in milk, cheese, spices, and lemon juice. Mix together well, cover, and let sit. Serve a healthy amount of grits topped with a few big scoops of the sauce to your patiently waiting, hungry and excited, dinner guests.


Elena’s blog


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T he Faces


Southern Farming

text by anthony garzilli photography by siobhan egan

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T he

face of southern farming has a beard and there’s a beige cap on his head and a beer in his hand and his eyes begin to close then jolt open as he gently rocks on a chair on the porch of his Marshall, N.C., home. No, the face of southern farming is alert and smiling, her hair’s in a bun and she’s talking excitedly about the years-long journey from Virginia to Asheville to Utah and finally to Marshall, home of a rundown former tobacco farm that she helped turn into Root Bottom Farm, a thriving microgreens and root-vegetable business. Dark blankets the sky. He mentions something about having a farming niche; she jokes about needing new work boots. They live just minutes from downtown Asheville, which in early July recorded 8.44 inches of rain. The weather left the farm muddy and sloshy and dirt-caked her already worn-out cracked boots. The rain forced hundreds of garlic bulbs to be rescued and housed in the farm’s barn for curing, but business is good. Restaurants are buying microgreens, especially sunflower greens, and garlic and soon the farm will expand to grow fruit.

southern farming usually reach their weekly financial goals. Together, Morgan Decker and his wife Sarah are fulfilling their farming dreams. n



Marshall, N.C., is in Madison County, about 20 miles from downtown Asheville. Population: 872. Within the hills and mountains, on East Fork Road, is the low-lying land that attracted the Deckers in 2011. That bottom land is what inspired the Root Bottom Farm name. There’s a guest house, adjacent studio space and a one-bedroom, 700-square foot, 90-year-old cabin with a porch and a curious cat. That’s where the Deckers live. They met in Utah and have lived in Marshall for about two years. The Utah-born Morgan, a former kindergarten teacher in Santa Monica, Calif., who had interned at a farm in Vermont and worked at one in Utah, and Sarah, a photography teacher and adventurist, who once lived in Asheville and thru-hiked the Appalachian Trail. She grew up living on a farm in Virginia.

By selling at the farmers’ market on Tuesdays and selling to seven Asheville restauMorgan was a skier at four years old rants and other businesses, the faces of Paprika Southern

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and was involved in summer camps and always enjoyed being outdoors. Having a profession that requires him to be outdoors 12 hours a day is ideal.

tually Morgan had to crawl through the windows, passed mattresses, just to open the door. They took more than 60 truck loads of junk off the property and burned or recycled more refuse.

Sarah put hundreds of miles on her Subaru a couple of summers ago after working in Utah. She looked at 12 different properties in Madison County, searching for the ideal farm.

It wasn’t ideal, but it was, because after having lived in 34 places throughout her life, Sarah believed she had found a home, a place to raise her children. A place to put down her roots. Morgan saw its poWhen she discovered what would be tential. her new home, she saw four neglected single-wide trailers and a house “I saw what it could be, not what it was,” packed with so much junk that even- he said. Paprika Southern

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“I grew up on a farm in Virginia; my happiest time was when we lived on that farm,” Sarah said. “I remember when it was good. Living on the farm was awesome.” They were married in the spring of 2012. Morgan a full-time farmer; Sarah, a photographer for French Broad Rafting and Ziplines, and the farm’s blogger, logo designer and do-whatever-is-needed partner, including weeding and harvesting. Together they cook and clean and sometimes they even steal a few minutes to watch a movie.

luckily it’s young people who are changing it,” Sarah said. The Deckers own Root Bottom Farm. They had money saved to buy the 5.3acre property—they often rent the guest house, which helps pay the mortgage—and Morgan said it’s a huge advantage to be able to do what he pleases on the good, flat farming land. His organically grown foods include microgreens, garlic (5,200 bulbs planted this year), basil, cucumbers, tomatoes and potatoes, and about 40 different vegetables, but the foundation has been set to begin growing fruit, including grapes and berries.

“There are never enough hours in a day. Ever,” Sarah said. “We work until we can’t anymore and then we cook dinner He found his niche by selling microgreens, and we pretend to watch something on but he wants to always think ahead. “Can’t put all your eggs in one basket,” Netflix and then fall asleep.” Morgan said. They do it all again the next day. They Morgan fills about 30 of the 11-by-8 trays love it. of sunflower greens a week. On a recent Morgan, 32, and Sarah, 31, are trying to Saturday, he harvested 150 pounds of help reverse a trend. According to a 2007 potatoes. The day before he sold $180 U.S. Department of Agriculture report, the worth of goods to restaurants. His wife’s average age of the principal farm operator boots are still a mess. is 57 and the fastest growing group of farm n n n operators is those 65 years and older. The Deckers are part of a younger breed, When Sarah was pursuing her MFA in joined at the local farmers’ market by oth- photography at Savannah College of Art and Design, she wrote a list of attributes ers in their 30s. that constitute her perfect man. This “The face of farming is changing and was 2006. Sarah’s requirements includpage 33

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ed her man to be tall, handsome, funny, someone who likes to travel, enjoys good music, recycles, be earth conscious and be a farmer. Also the guy wasn’t supposed to be a Libra, but nobody’s perfect.

The young face of southern farming scratches his beard and asks the smiling other youthful face if she can grab him something from inside. It’s late, cool, the skies have quieted. Tomorrow’s another morning-to-dark day.

“Subconsciously he was always the per- Sarah obliges, opens the door, and there fect man,” Sarah said. “I just had to find they are, adorned in polka-dots: a new him.” pair of neoprene boots. Morgan didn’t have a list and wasn’t on a quest for a woman, but then he met Sarah. He courted her with Bok Choy. She swooned. “I’d given up looking for someone and that’s when I met Sarah,” Morgan said. Paprika Southern

Visit Root Bottom Farm Online www.rootbottomfarm.com page 34

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tastemakers of savannah text by bevin valentine photography by siobhan egan

Food culture in Savannah, Georgia might best be described as “in-progress.” At Paprika Southern we see Savannah as a microcosm of a larger culinary movement happening across the country. While we’re still catching up to some other southern cities of similar size and demographics, it’s that very quality—of being “in-progress”—that makes this time an exciting one. Savannah is on the cusp of something not yet fully realized. These five small businesses recognize this sea change and are working, through a commitment to quality and craft, to expand the local food culture in Savannah and in southern coastal Georgia.

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Philip Brown, Owner and Roast-Master of Perc

T ucked into D e S oto A venue

in Savannah’s Starland District is Perc, a coffee roaster and wholesale company. The space is bursting at the seams, with bins of coffee beans filling the floorspace, and a coffee roaster roaring in the background. Owner Philip Brown turned the roaster off during our interview, though two of his employees—Spencer Perez and Taylor Kimball—continued bagging coffee in the back while we chatted.

of coffee a week, and he and his team are committed to bringing coffee of the highest quality to Savannah. Philip started out in Athens, GA as a part-time musician, parttime barista, and was eventually promoted to manager of the coffee shop where he worked. After managing the shop for several years, he became interested in developing a skill that would allow him more independence in his employment and apprenticed with the head roaster.

This non-stop mentality and persistence has led Perc to acquiring nearly 70 local accounts, ranging from coffee shops, to hotels, to restaurants, in the three years since it opened. Philip roasts 1,000 – 1,500 pounds

By his second batch he knew he wanted to roast full time. With the idea of starting his own business in mind, he began researching several southern cities—Nashville, Asheville, Atlanta, Charleston, Augusta, and Sa-

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vannah among them—and chose Savannah to move to based on its potential for growth. Many of the other similar cities already had much more established coffee and locovore eating scenes, while he felt Savannah’s was “just starting.” He recognized in Savannah an opportunity to fulfill a niche that was not yet being met. He states, “I think that coffee culture in Savannah is still in its infancy and hopefully we’ll be noted as somebody who’s trying to push it further and further... There’s still so many people in Savannah that haven’t experienced next-level coffee and that’s what we’re trying to do.”

culture in Savannah. The team regularly cups and profiles their coffees—meaning they roast the beans and begin pulling samples around 375 degrees and every five degrees thereafter up to around 435. They taste and compare the samples and debate what profile is the best for each coffee. Through this process they are able to better understand the product, and to better fulfill Philip’s other priorities, customer service and education.

Now that Perc is firmly established in Savannah’s psyche, one of Perc’s goals is to work with each client individually to ensure each cup of Perc coffee be the best it Philip strives constantly to improve—im- can. To accomplish this, Philip works with prove roasting techniques, improve customer the staffs of his clients’ businesses to eduservice, and improve coffee education and cate them thoroughly about the coffees, Paprika Southern

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Left, Spencer Perez works with a vacuum brewer / Right, Taylor Kimball weighs beans to bag Paprika Southern page 40

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the best brew methods, and how to talk about and sell the coffee. He constantly tries to identify weak points so he can hone his craft and continually get better.

to Savannah. When sourcing coffee he looks for flavor profiles that excite him and sources seasonally, sometimes finding coffees other roasters around the nation are excited about and swapping coffees with While Perc does offer a couple of custom them. “The idea is to bring the world to blends, what Philip is truly excited about Savannah where coffee’s concerned.” are single origin coffees. Over 1,000 different flavor compounds have been iden- In talking to Philip, his passion for coffee tified in coffee, giving the taste of a sin- is clear. Perc will move to a larger space in gle bean a high level of complexity. It is September where he can establish a “par up to Philip as the roaster to find the best level” of quality. He plans to invite the ways to bring out the unique flavors of public in and hold presentations and tasteach coffee. He points out that each bean ings to further coffee education, both for is hand-picked and processed, calling for the general public and the baristas who high maintenance and manual labor, and serve his coffee. It is in this spirit that he he wants to highlight the efforts of all was kind enough to share some pro-tips the people it takes to bring a coffee bean for the home coffee enthusiast with us. Paprika Southern

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PERC COFFEE PRO-TIPS Drink It Fresh— Once you open your coffee, it’s fresh for about 14 days if stored properly, but we recommend that you try to finish it within a week. Remember, air, moisture, heat, and light are the enemy of freshness and you’re too fresh to drink old coffee.

Bean Storage— Keep your beans in an airtight container and in a cool, dark place like a kitchen cupboard. Avoid temperature changes and direct sunlight. Avoid storing beans in the fridge or freezer - high humidity, foul odors, and freezer burn are bad for your coffee.

Good Grinder— The grind is a crucial variable in making outstanding coffee. Get a burr grinder. The beans are gravity fed through the burrs once, ensuring a consistent grind. For drip coffee, the grind should feel like sand on a beach. Burr grinders are more expensive, but well worth it. We prefer Baratza grinders for the home. Their Encore model is about $130.

Coffee-to-Water Ratio— Use a digital gram scale and weigh your water and coffee. We usually use a 15g:1g water to coffee ratio. Divide your target yield by 15 to get your dose. Example: 300g of water to 22g of coffee. If you don’t have a gram scale try about two tablespoons to every six fluid ounces of water.

Good Water— Start with cold, filtered water. Let the water come to a boil, then let it rest for about a minute before brewing. Remember, just like cooking with wine, always use water you would enjoy drinking.

Water Temp— Brew your coffee with water that’s between 195°F-205°F to achieve the proper extraction. Any cooler and the coffee will be flat, lifeless, and sour. Any hotter and the coffee will be bitter, harsh, and caustic.

Brew Time— For most brew methods, water should contact the grounds for three to four minutes. If the taste of your coffee is not optimal, you may be over extracting or under extracting your coffee. Experiment with the contact time until you make a cup of coffee that suits your tastes perfectly.

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Amy Shippy and Laura Hale, Co-owners of Maison de Macarons

Entering Maison de Macarons

is a somewhat incongruous experience. Nestled in a commercial area strip shopping center, this charming shop feels like stepping out of Southside Savannah into a patisserie in the South of France. Owners Laura Hale and Amy Shippy enthusiastically greet each customer as they arrive, and thank them for stopping in as they exit. The furniture—piecemeal and shabby in only the chicest way—is a hodge-podge of what they could beg from relatives. And the display case (a Craig’s List find) is filled with the most colorful and vibrant display of macarons that I (who have visited Paris twice) have ever encountered. Paprika Southern

Amy and Laura are long-time friends who finish each other’s sentences and often (accidentally) show up to work dressed alike. They got into the macaron business less than two years ago, after Amy (who likes a challenge in her baking endeavors) decided to make macarons for a Christmas party. As anyone who has ever read a macaron recipe knows (when I contemplated taking them on years ago, I gave up at the words “almond flour”), macarons are notoriously difficult to master, but Amy’s first batch worked. Amy and Laura were both drawn to the variety of flavors and in January of the following year (2012) Amy taught Laura page 44

to make the cookies. In their baking experiments they ended up with more cookies than they, their husbands, and their children could eat, so they took them to their sons’ soccer game and quickly got orders for eighteen dozen. The realization that they had a viable business on their hands took hold, and by March they were looking for a retail location. Macarons (not to be confused with the American macaroon) were originally an Italian cookie, brought to France by Catherine de Medici upon her marriage to King Henry II. A Parisian treat, now found throughout France, page 45

the cookies consist of a meringue shell and buttercream or ganache filling. Due to the finicky nature of meringue, the cookies are temperamental, and each cookie at Maison de Macarons is made by hand by Amy or Laura. Maison de Macarons—the only exclusively macaron bakery in Savannah— distinguishes itself by the variety of unique flavors offered. As well as the traditional lavender, Amy and Laura also concoct flavors such as caramel (their bestseller), the locally inspired Tybee Turtle (dipped in chocolate and rolled in pecans), seasonal creations (apple and cinnamon for fall, bourbon peIssue 3 / August, 2013

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can for Thanksgiving, and Irish cream for St. Patrick’s Day), and, the day we were in, passionfruit (just because it was fresh at the market). Often customers become so attached to the seasonal flavors that Amy and Laura find themselves adding them to the permanent menu (such as the chocolate-covered strawberry flavor, originally intended as a Valentine’s Day treat). Everything is done by hand, from grinding the almonds for almond flour, to whipping the meringue, to making their caramel from scratch. In each cookie they seek depth of flavor and strive for balance between sweet and tart. In the green tea macaron, for example, the cookie itself has green tea in it, but it’s filled with a honey buttercream with flecks of candied ginger, which offsets the sweetness of the cookie. The punchy flavors, beautiful displays, and friendly customer service have quickly made this small business a Savannah favorite. Amy and Laura make and sell between 600 and 800 macarons a day and ship nationwide. Always up for a challenge, they also customize their cookies for events and have even gold leafed macarons for one customer. Since opening their first space last year they have moved into a larger space, which they have plans to expand this year to offset their shipping business, and hope, in the future, to open a second location. Paprika Southern

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Christian Depken, Owner of Le Chai: Galerie du Vin

V isiting C hristian D epken ’ s

wine shop Le Chai: Galerie du Vin is an education. It is truly, as the name suggests, a gallery of wine. Not for this shop aisles stacked six feet high with bins of wines labeled an ill-explained “91 points.” Instead, one bottle of each wine—the stock stored in a temperature-controlled back room—is displayed with a card indicating its price and place of origin. Wine are arranged by region, and Christian will discuss each wine in depth with you as you make your selection, perhaps even showing you photographs from the vineyards he has visited or showing you the soil samples he has collected, and explaining Paprika Southern

how where the grapes grow—the climate, the elevation, proximity to the sea—influences the taste. He knows what wines to pair with what foods and remembers your favorites. He has firm opinions on what a chardonnay should taste like (hint—it’s not oak) and staunchly advocates that we should all be drinking more German Riesling. Christian did not grow up expecting to become Savannah’s resident expert on fine European wines. Hailing from the Chattanooga area, his first interest in the food and beverage industry was sparked by tasting a bottle of Guinness Extra page 50

Stout at a party he attended with his older brother in Athens, GA. This taste—his first of “real beer”—led him to running sports bars and restaurants and lifelong interest in fermentation.

ognized the incongruity of the California and Washington state vintages populating the wine list. He was unable to pair, for example, a California chardonnay with a nicoise salad because no relationship exists between After time spent managing bars and the two. He transitioned the wine list restaurants and learning about beer to all European wines. And it worked. and liquor, the wine bug bit. Christian began researching, reading, and In 2002 the roof fell in on Metropole writing about wines, and in 1999 he (literally), and Christian took the dive was hired to take over the wine bar and opened a wine shop. The conat the late (and much lamented) Café cept of Le Chai—previously located Metropole. As a restaurant that was on De Soto Avenue, now in the forserving a French-inspired, largely mer Chatham Artillery building at the Provencal-based, menu, Christian rec- south end of Forsyth Park—would be page 51

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all European, with everything temperature and humidity controlled, and each wine personally selected by Christian. The name Le Chai is French for what is, essentially, a “glorified shed.” In wine-producing areas such as Champagne, Burgundy, or Alsace, wines are stored in underground caves (les caves), but in Bordeaux, as in Savannah, if you dig underground, you hit water. The wines there would be stored in an above-ground structure known as a chai. Christian’s philosophy of wine is at once both simple and complex. He stocks the wines he drinks. He identifies a categorical difference between wines of the Old World (Europe) and those of new. A number of components are responsible for this difference, but three major ones are climate (Europe’s is generally cooler), soil types (Christian has visited a German vineyard in which vines grow in pure slate), and time (European winemakers have had centuries longer than American and other New World countries—in some cases up to 2,000 years— to perfect their techniques). These factors work in concert to form that elusive trait known as terroir, or “of the earth”— things working together to produce a singular product that is unique to its time and place of origin.

planting several different crops in the soil in your backyard—say, avocado, pineapple, corn, and peanuts. It’s unreasonable to expect each to perform to the same level, or, in some cases, any of them to perform. Put another way—take the example of Georgia’s own Vidalia onion. Vidalia onions are grown in and around the town of Vidalia. Thirteen counties and parts of seven other counties are allowed to use the label “Vidalia onion,” because the soil there has a low sulfur content which makes the onions taste sweeter. Christian says “You can take a Vidalia onion to Minnesota and put it in the ground, and it may grow. It may make a nice onion. But it’s not going to be a Vidalia onion.” That’s terroir.

Ultimately wine is symbiotic—it is dependent upon the time and place it was made, and in the consumption, it should be paired with food and shared with friends. Christian is committed to raising the bar for wine in Savannah—not only through offering high quality wines, but also through tastings and wine education. By putting better wines (not necessarily exclusively European wines) in front of people, they improve their palettes and learn to distinguish what they like. Christian sees a recent upswing in the quality of the If this concept sounds a bit difficult food scene in Savannah, and, as a busito grasp, Christian breaks it down ness owner, is committed to continuing with the following example: imagine to improve it. Paprika Southern

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Beekeeper Bobby Colson of B & G Honey Farms

B y far our biggest adventure

in researching this story was trekking out to Register, GA and down a dirt road to meet Bobby Colson of B & G Honey Farms. Bobby grew up with bees—his father kept them as a hobby—but Bobby himself never had an interest until 1989, when he and his wife visited a cousin in Florida who kept bees. They spent the whole weekend talking bees, and he was hooked. B & G Honey Farms is a family affair, operated by Bobby, his wife, and his daughter. He started out with a few hives, and neighbors would alert him to swarms in the area. Soon, he had 450 hives. page 55

I have to admit to being a bit nervous around so many bees, but (with the exception of a couple angry bees who buzzed around us mercilessly) for the most part they are too involved with the workings of the hive to bother with outside visitors. Each hive contains 40-60,000 bees, each of which has their individual role. Every hive has one queen bee, the sole laying female in the community. The rest of the (non-laying) female bees are worker bees, each with a specific duty, whether it be climate control, guard duty, or playing lady-in-waiting to the queen. These bees spend their (short) lives busily working for the betterment of the hive, and toward the end of their lives leave the hive to go out and gather necIssue 3 / August, 2013

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tar and pollen to bring back. They deposit the nectar in cells in the hive, which is then fanned by thousands of bee wings to dry it out; this is how honey is formed. Bobby and his family gather the honey in the spring of the year. Once the honeycomb is harvested (they only take about 80%, leaving enough for the bees to have nourishment the rest of the year), it is then put in an extractor to separate the honey and strained three times. Unlike the pasteurized honey often found in traditional grocery stores, this raw honey does not have a prolonged shelf life. Although it will granulate eventually, the healing properties of raw local honey cannot be discounted. Bobby tells us of anecdotal evidence of it page 57

helping to heal scars faster when applied directly to the skin, and its use in the treatment of allergies is well-established. The straining technique Bobby uses removes debris from the honey, but allows the pollen to remain. By eating wildflower honey from your local area, which contains trace amounts of airborne allergens, you slowly build up your immunity. The Georgia average harvest per hive is around fifty-one pounds of honey. Bees play a major part in our ecosystem by pollinating the plants that we, and wild animals, consume. In 2006-2007 Bobby lost 350 of his hives to colony collapse disorder, but has rebuilt the community since then. For the past six years he has abstained from using any Issue 3 / August, 2013

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chemicals such as pesticides with his bees, though more and more pests, such as wax moths and small hive beetles, which can destroy a hive, are appearing. He believes the best way to prevent these pests is by keeping a strong hive, one which can defend itself. Bobby has a twenty-four foot camper trailer he plans to strip out and put one hive in, along with some beekeeping equipment, to travel around to local schools and provide education to children about bees and their importance, not only to honey production, but to our food source. In recent years bees have become more and more in the national (and international) eye. What is simply a small family-run business in rural Georgia is part of a much larger debate. Paprika Southern

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The Chocolate Lab Owner Kelly Spivey

Kelly Spivey is the new girl

on the block—literally. The owner of The Chocolate Lab moved into a small space on De Soto Avenue, directly across from Perc, earlier this summer. Specializing in artisan chocolate bars, she is devoted to bringing craft chocolate to Savannah. Originally from Rocky Mount, North Carolina, Kelly moved to Savannah to study photography at Savannah College of Art and Design. She went to Boston to attend graduate school, but returned to Savannah after a year to look for a job in baking, realizing it was where her passion resided. She worked as a baker for about five years and began studying chocolate. page 61

Her original goal was to make chocolate from bean to bar, but, overwhelmed by the complexity of such an undertaking at this early stage in her career, decided instead to combine baking with chocolate in a candy bar. Kelly’s small-batch chocolate bars are all 100% hand-made by her. She strongly believes in using the best ingredients she has access to, trying to source locally as much as possible. What she is unable to find locally she gets organic and fair trade. The day we visited her, Kelly was working on her vanilla nougat bars, carefully dipping each one by hand in chocolate. Due to their lack of preservatives the bars only last a few months—if the purchaser can Issue 3 / August, 2013

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America, but there’s unbelievable chocolate being made [here]…You just have to know about it.” She intends to continue her candy bars, while also expanding her flavor repertoire and getting her As one of only two people doing craft choc- products to more vendors. Ultimately olate in town, Kelly’s goal for The Choco- her goal is to make chocolate from the late Lab is to expand the chocolate scene bean. in Savannah, and to contribute to Savannah’s growing food movement. She points It’s all connected. In addition to using B to a nationwide trend in food, saying “We & G honey in her bars, Kelly also makes can only get bigger as far as the food scene a bar using Perc coffee. As each of these goes…I just hope to be able to help to in- small businesses grows and evolves, they, troduce people to craft chocolate.” like the bees in Bobby’s hives, create an interconnected network with each othIn this vein, Kelly also holds chocolate er that depends upon itself to survive. tastings. She says “People think the only And the stronger the hive, the stronger good chocolate is in Europe or South the community. resist them even that long. After tasting the goat milk caramel bar (in which Kelly uses honey from B & G Honey Farms), this writer doubts it.

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resources B&G Honey Farms

maison de macarons

Le Chai Galerie du vin

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perc coffee

the chocolate lab

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A r t-w ork in g re spon sib ly by josh jalbert


met atlanta-based

artist Allen Peterson in the South of France in the fall of last year. Allen was my neighbor and colleague during that time. Both Allen and I were in Lacoste to teach art classes at the Savannah College of Art and Design. Over the ten weeks there together, along with good wine and many travel escapades, I had the pleasure of getting to know Allen as a remarkably kind, generous, and creative individual with two young, beautiful girls and a lovely wife. Perhaps, because of my personal connection to Allen, I am in a privileged position to offer a few reflections in regards to his artwork. One thing that artists do is ask questions. Among Allen’s concerns are the questions “what kind of world our children will inherit,” and “how can we best plan for and take responsibility for the effects Paprika Southern

Hive Consciousness, 2012, image courtesy of Allen Peterson

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Image courtesy of Allen Peterson

of our actions?” The weight of these critical questions can be crippling for any artist who has neither the courage nor the conviction to affirm one’s responsibility, to acknowledge the uncertainty of not knowing what is best, and yet, proceed to assert the possibility for art to imagine a better world. Allen’s artwork poses the question ‘what if ?’ For more than a decade, a particular investigation of Allen’s work has been on honeybees’ system of pollination, honey production, and the relationship between bees and humans. Only very recently have scientists begun to understand the page 67

cause of the dramatically increasing death of honeybees that was given the name “Colony Collapse Disorder” in 2006, and has since become a major case of immediate concern with the consequences of unpollinated crops and food shortage for humans worldwide. Allen writes, ‘When I first approached the topic of bees, over a decade ago, I was attracted to their patterns and systems, and the work was more abstract and aesthetic than my bee-related work is now. In 2007, when the alarming onslaught of Colony Collapse Disorder hobbled the beekeeping pollination component of the industrialized agricultural systems of North America and Europe, my work became topically relevant in ways that I hadn’t predicted.  My strategies shifted, including that I began keeping hives of bees in my own backyard in order to better understand bees in a pragmatic sense, and in a sense to help with their survival on an immediate scale.  My work began overtly bringing into question the relationship between humans and honeybees. That question became part of the process when I decided to join the dialogue of artists who ask for the collaborative help of bees in making their work.” In development of artistic forms of collaboration, Allen has “initiated art that is only finished after being left inside an active beehive, where honeybees complete the work by adding their own beeswax honeycomb.” The work titled Hive Issue 3 / August, 2013

Image courtesy of Allen Peterson

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Consciousness, 2012 is of a child’s face cast in beeswax made by the artist and covered by honeycomb made by bees. As a coproduced object, the work is a beautiful model for relational creativity that values more than the human sense, and envisions cross-species, co-evolutionary futures. However, this better future does not yet exist, and it would be false for an artwork today to present such a claim as happiness that has been achieved. Quite the opposite is what the piece immediately presents to us. The world this child inherits is disfigured. The cast child’s face covered with honeycomb is reminiscent of atrocious birth deformities caused by radiation and chemical exposure. It stands as a frightening mutation that indicates a warning of the consequences of a world system that is out of balance. This contradiction between beauty and disfigurement in the work is not a fault to be erased, it is the truth of the artwork that reflects the discord between the possibility of a better world of mutually interdependent harmony and the present reality of its inexistence. When the honeybees’ pollination and production systems are working as they should, each bee can act individually and together with the group, according to their nature. Likewise, genuine beauty in an artwork comes from establishing a harmonious relationship of individual elements in accord with the greater whole page 69

of the piece. The idea of beauty, so central to artwork, is related very closely to the concept of freedom, in the sense that individual elements are not forced into placement but find their proper home within the collective appearance. Art-working is a practice of relation building, as can be seen in Allen’s process; the art only works when all participants, including Allen and the bees, can function as they independently want to. Allen has described this himself saying, “It is important to me that the requests that I make of the bees be minimally intrusive to their regular activities—a ‘reasonable’ request that does not disrupt the hive. Of course, adding a foreign element to the hive is by definition an imposition, just as any beekeeper takes on a managerial role in caring for a hive.  The bees can’t be forced to produce comb, but will only do so if they are comfortable.  This situation, intrinsic to the production of this type of artwork, resonates with the question of humans’ historic relationship with honeybees, which could be thought of in terms ranging from symbiosis to tyranny.” In an artwork, when one element dominates another, the artwork becomes forced, and unbalanced. In society, this kind of imbalance of power leads to ugliness, disorder, and dying. The overdeterminations of money in industrial agriculture put more importance on Issue 3 / August, 2013

the individual and immediate profits for corporations over long-term sustainability. The current world food supply could feed everyone alive today, but we know that does not happen, because there is no immediate economic benefit to this global cause. Art-working extends to ethical thinking as Allen suggests when he writes, “the responsibilities involved with caring for a hive of bees, and the implications of these responsibilities, are important to the work.” The artist’s responsibility to the choices decided upon in art-making and their consequences when unfolded, in the model of artistic practice that Allen provides for us, concern thinking responsibly beyond self-interest “to hopefully avoid the self-indulgence of the role of the artist whenever possible,” for the benefit of the collective and future. In this vein, the forms of art can serve as a small model for a more beautiful and free form of society. “Our own choices as individuals also become part of larger patterns…that add up to complex behaviors on the part of the hive or collective.” When attained, the free actions of individuals collectively supported are capable of producing group actions and beautiful systems worthy of our world to bestow for all life of the future, and as a dedicated contributor to this world I extend my thanks to my friend Allen. Paprika Southern

Image courtesy of Allen Peterson

visit allen’s website www.allenpeterson.com

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your ad here contact advertise@paprikasouthern.com for ad rates

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Trou Normand: Palate Cleanser

a food-inspired travel log

by Jeanne Svensdon What artist doesn’t dream of stepping foot into the cafes of Paris where some of the greats used to meet, brainstorm, and collaborate instead of attending university? To get inside the heads of Picasso, Renoir, Lautrec, and learn where their inspirations came from or what they aimed to accomplish with their radical discussions? Whether they worked all day, slept all night, or vice versa, there was always a need for brain fuel‌to finish that painting, that poem, that idea. It always led back to la nourriture (food). After arriving at Charles de Gaulle Airport in mid-July, the gang was in dire need of some brain food to jumpstart our immersion into the Parisian lifestyle.

The Eiffel Tower

We began our culinary extravaganza at Brasserie Thoumieux in preparation for a behind the scenes tour of the Eiffel Tower and taking 669 steps down from her second floor platform. Beautiful bread arrived alongside fluffy butter, a touch of salt if needed, and sardine pate. The restaurant was quiet other than our delirious banter as jetlag set in. I finished the meal with the freshest piece of cod paired with mixed vegetables. Paprika Southern

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Cafe St. Regis

Two blocks from our apartment on the テ四e St. Louis, across the Seine from Notre Dame, was Cafテゥ Saint Regis. What would become our morning ritual began with croissants, pains au chocolat, coffee, pistachio cake, and the creamiest, sweetest hot chocolate. The wait staff quickly became our family abroad.

Montmartre On to Montmartre where Picasso, Toulouse-Lautrec, and Van Gogh would spend their time drinking absinthe at the Moulin Rouge, work in the studios of Le Bateau Lavoir, and congregate in Place Ravignon, a small cobblestone square outside the studios. Cafテゥs and markets lined the streets, including Au Marche de la Butte where a scene from Amelie was filmed. page 73

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St. Germain

St Germain is where the famished with a pretty penny come to stuff their faces. Every window display is decorated down to the finest detail with vintage delicate children’s clothing, home accessories, colorful pastries, and CHOCOLATE. We had the pleasure of getting a behind-the-scenes look at Jean-Charles Rochoux Chocolatier. They were already working on chocolate displays for their Christmas window.


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Adjoining the Ralph Lauren store on Saint Germain Boulevard is Ralph’s, where blue and white pillows and plates adorn an elegant courtyard setting with an even more beautiful wait staff (all models I’m sure). Being from Louisiana I’ve had the opportunity to try a variety of food in my day. This was a first for fried olives. Delicious. We wrapped up the meal with brownies and crème fraiche, cheese cake, caramel popcorn, and espresso. page 74


An artist’s mecca (mainly street artists), Belleville is a colorful, lively part of town. They sell mustard in containers that look like paint tubes in this area. Too clever!

Les Caves de Prague

Our wine tour began at Les Caves de Prague: Boutique et Bar a Vins, and before we knew it there was no need to continue the tour. The setting was quaint and slightly loud due to others coming in to share a bottle of wine, a cheese plate, and an evening conversation. “It isn’t truth that is at the bottom of the glass, it’s friendship.” We stumbled to dinner at Le Voltaire and kept it light after all the snacking we had done. Most had dessert and I had the loveliest artichoke with a lemon butter dipping sauce. Perfect way to end the day.

Le Voltaire

Fontainebleau & Vaux le Vicomte

Needing a day in the country, we traveled to Fountainebleau to visit the royal chateau and later to Vaux le Vicomte. The sheer magnitude of these “country homes” was mind-boggling, every inch decorated, every detail flawless, and immaculate gardens. We nestled into the courtyard of Creperie Barjole where we could hear the roosters in the hedges behind us and put our eyes on the vegetable garden we were being served from. A ratatouille and sausage crepe for my mother paired with ginger beer, a Japanese salad for me, and a coquelicot (poppy) jam crepe for dessert.

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July 14, Bastile Day, French National Day! We began the day with the Bastille Day parade and festivities, then headed to lunch at L’Avenue where a table was set for us outside. We had two with us whose birthdays we needed to celebrate. Friends were serving friends champagne as we watched men in uniform buzzing about town. After lunch we headed for a boat tour on the Seine where we passed monuments, under bridges, and got to finally see a good view of our apartment. Dinner was a full six course meal consisting of duck foie fras, salmon, cheeses, macarons‌A serious 45 minutes worth of a GIGANTIC nonstop firework display was one hell of a way to end the day.

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Bastille Day

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Monet’s Garden

After an overwhelming visit to Versailles on the way to visit Missure Monet, we stopped at Le Moulin de Forges which was situated alongside a stream. There was a lovely outdoor deck where we sat next to the water. A man painted impressionist scenes in the garden while locals swam in the stream. I ordered grilled black mullet with Provencal herbs and a braised Chinese cabbage salad for my last lunch of the trip. Monet’s gardens were breathtaking and a wonderful “cleansing of the palette,” if you will, after a whirlwind of a 10-day stay in the City of Lights. Je vous remercie beaucoup et j’espère vous voir bientôt, Paris.

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An Evening of Opera photograhy by bevin valentine

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& josh jalbert

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after returning fom her recent trip to france, paprika southern friend and contributor jeanne svendson was inspired to throw a parisian-themed dinner party. with her beau, r campbell, she transformed her downtown savannah home into an evening of opera, and invited us to photograph the preparations. page 79

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The Gallery Each month we ask our readers to submit artwork based around a theme. For August, traditionally the hottest month of the year, we asked for for work inspired by the ocean.

Embrace of Ocean / Catherine Le Comte / photography / Derry, NH Paprika Southern

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As Above So Below / Sarah Rose / digital art / Fort Collins, CO page 93

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High Tide / Benjamin Crossley / digital archival print / Georgetown, KY

Gateway / Catherine Le Comte / photography / Derry, NH

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Jewels from the Ocean / Alfie Wace / digital photography / Savannah, GA

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The Ocean Breathes Salty / Rae Bass / photography / Goldsboro, NC

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At Sunset / Allison Weeks Thomas / acrylic and watercolor / Asheville, NC

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Issue 3 / August, 2013

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Reminisce / Stacy Lynn Diehl / digital photography / Savannah, GA page 99

Issue 3 / August, 2013

Satilla / Randy Akers / mixed media on canvas / Savannah, GA

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Untitled 11 / Page Perrault / archival pigment print / Columbus, GA

Next month’s theme will be “memory.” We are seeking work that conceptually and visually engages with memory--whether it be the nostalgia of childhood memory, a half-remembered dream, or the fickle and unreliable nature of memory. Please submit your artwork that deals with memory to our September gallery section.

To submit please attach jpegs to an email to mail@paprikasouthern.com with the subject line “Memory Submission” and the following information:

Open to all media Deadline August 26

Files should be 150 ppi, no smaller than 12 inches on the shorter side.

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-Artist name -Title of piece (must match file name) -Medium -Hometown -Website (if applicable) -A brief statement about the work (optional)

Issue 3 / August, 2013

P.S. Paprika Southern recommends

new orleans Celebrate the legendary food culture of New Orleans with Coolinary New Orleans in August. With over 50 restaurants participating, customers are offered prixe fixe menus that highlight this southern city’s unique cuisine. August 1 - 31

savannah SCAD Museum of Art presents Mise-en-scène, a show of recent work by contemperary photographer and video artist Alex Prager. Two short films, along with selected stills, are on display. The first exhibition of this exciting young artist to be held in the Southeast is not to be missed. July 27 - December 8

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Dallas Hotel Texas, presented by the Dallas Museum of Art, recreates the installation of artwork present in the presidential suite at Hotel Texas in 1963. The show commemorates the 50 year anniversary of President Kennedy’s assassination by bringing together the works originally curated for the President and First Lady’s trip to Texas that year, and includes Vincent Van Gogh, Franz Kline, Pablo Picasso, and more. Show runs through September 15

Nashville austin Ticka Arts presents their first gallery show at O2 Gallery in Austin. The exhibition will feature a variety of emerging artists making photographically-based works.

Nashville’s Tomato Art Fest combines food and art in celebration of one of the South’s favorite crops, the tomato. This year, the tenth anniversary of the show, is sure to be best yet. August 10

August 16 - 30

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Issue 3 / August, 2013

Follow along with Paprika Southern throughout the month: Facebook Twitter Pinterest Instagram See you in September!

Paprika Southern

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Profile for Paprika Southern

Paprika Southern August  

Issue 3 of Paprika Southern, the online magazine for art and style with a southern twist. Visit us at www.paprikasouthern.com.

Paprika Southern August  

Issue 3 of Paprika Southern, the online magazine for art and style with a southern twist. Visit us at www.paprikasouthern.com.