We started Cultures & Cuisines because, despite the abundance of websites about food, travel, and food and travel, we weren’t seeing the kind of writing we wanted to be doing, nor the kind we wanted to be reading: informed, intelligent, well-written narratives about the places, both literal and imaginary, where food and travel meet, narratives that allowed a luxurious word count, while keeping in mind that every word matters and shouldn’t be wasted, narratives that resulted not from in-and-out “parachute reporting,” but from a deep interest in and love of a particular place, and the desire to learn more about it and share that with others.
We also weren’t seeing bylines by writers we knew were capable of such writing, writers who had, quite possibly, squirreled away in a desk drawer or, more likely, a digital drive, that piece they never sold because they couldn’t find the right outlet for it. Or writers who didn’t have the publication history that an editor expected. Or writers from any one of the many communities of identity that are marginalized by traditional media. And, most of all, people who were historically the subjects of stories, but who were never given the opportunity to construct a narrative from their own point of view, in their own voice.
We publish pieces that fill that space.
It’s a great big world filled with more than seven billion people, all of us sharing in common, if nothing else, the fact that we must eat, that food, whether abundant or scarce, is one of the most essential elements of our culture. This means there are at least seven billion stories just waiting to be told, and we’re honored to be able to share some of them with you.
Beyond the essays, articles, videos, and photos you’ll find on this website, you’ll be able to connect with food and culture in other ways, too. Our Cookbook Restoration Project rescues and republishes old, out-of-print cookbooks, giving them new lives and new audiences by making them available in a format that makes them accessible to anyone with a computer. Carefully designed by artist Drew Gilbert after hours of historic and archival research, the cookbooks in this collection retain a classic look, honoring their origins and eras. Check out our global calendar, where you can find both renowned and obscure festivals and other food events. And offline, you can meet the site’s founders, contributors, and friends at one of our dinner parties, workshops, or food walks.
It is our hope and expectation that you’ll leave this virtual table feeling sated, and that you’ll return often.