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Growing up in a Tennessee mountain town, Chef Walker’s family owned one of the only eateries around – a quaint delicatessen frequented by everyone. Eager to help his father at the restaurant and his mother in her vegetable garden, Walker felt inspired from a young age to bring people together through food. Each season, what grew in the garden made its way to the restaurant and his family’s Southern home cooking.
Walker’s culinary creations honor his early love of food and family – where dishes are the gateway to traditions that nourish human connection.
Today, Walker is delighted to see the return of local, seasonal and all natural foods. Fresh ingredients and tastes that embody particular places inspire him to create and cook. As a experience and favorite Atlanta-based chef, Walker has spent more than 25 years in the city’s top kitchens. And, as consummate host, Walker is at his happiest when welcoming small-group dinner parties around his table – where both friendship and food nourishes.
In co-founding The Food Society, Chef Walker believes that community can form around the collective table, whether virtual or in-person. He says, “When we cook and eat together, we are partaking in each other’s traditions, stories, and memories.” For Walker, these treasured experiences can happen in a home kitchen, at an intimate dinner party, or in the fields of a family farm.
Christopher Atwood is a cook, author, teacher, scholar and food writer. Born and raised in Boston, Massachusetts, he has hung his apron in many places – Atlanta, Chicago, New York City, San Francisco and Vermont, with international work in Italy and Spain.
Each of these places became beloved homes-away-from-home, and left an indelible (and edible) mark on Chris’ cooking: from learning to make pasta in Tuscany alongside Italian grandmas to foraging among the Pacific’s fog-kissed redwoods.
Chris earned his PhD in Italian Literature & Culture from UC Berkeley (2014). During his studies in the Bay Area, he hosted hundreds of pop-up dinners in his home, unlocking the secrets of regional Italian cooking for North American food lovers. Chef Chris spent more than two years eating and cooking his way through Italy, living in Bologna, Florence and Rome. Chris has been teaching for 20 years and also holds a Master’s of Science in Education.
Since 2013, Chef Chris has instructed over 2,000 students in the arts of cooking, including adults, children and teens, and corporate teams. For Chris, savoring a meal together is one life’s rarest universal human experiences. “Even if we don’t speak the same language,” he says, “we can understand each other through the foods we choose to make and share with each other.”
Oh, hi! My name is Kenzie Rowland, and I am an avid home baker. Baking has become a type of religion for me as an adult. There have been many a sleepless night where I wander into my quiet, low-light kitchen to whip up something sweet and have a peaceful moment to myself. There’s just something about getting lost in all the smells and senses of baking your favorite chocolate cake that can bring you right back into the room and out of your head.
It’s the way I show love to others as well as myself. Nothing compares to working with your hands and creating something that brings joy to others. I am grateful every day that this love of baking was passed down to me by my family. \
If I’m not in my kitchen baking, you can find me acting, writing screenplays, shamelessly plugging my two published books of poetry The Sky Cracked Open and Atlas (see what I did there?), hosting my podcast Not Very Ladylike and doting on my joyfully spoiled fur-baby, Sophie The Cat…who also happens to be my sous chef.
I hope you have as much fun baking with me as I do baking for others!
Yu-Kai Lin is a professional gallery owner, pianist, and chef. He runs Kai Lin Art in Atlanta's booming Westside and teaches piano from his studio in Brookhaven. Yu-Kai enjoys vinyl records, contemporary and modern art, and obscure Japanese spices.
I think most of our first memories of food begin with our mothers and fathers in the kitchen. remember waking up to the comforting scents of Jasmine rice, curry roux, braised beef, steamed baos, pickled cucumbers...
I love food because it brings us together to the dinner table to celebrate, to reconnect, and to share in nourishment and in sustenance.
Food transports our palettes and broadens our taste buds creating an experience that allows us to savor and share.
My love for food started at a young age when my mother, grandmother and I would make Christmas cookies every year.
This continued on into my teens spending afternoons at home watching Great Chefs of the World on PBS and trying to replicate some of the recipes for our family dinner at night.
Feeling unfulfilled by my career in my late 20’s, I decided to make a change and pursue a culinary career. While pursuing a Culinary Arts degree from Art Institute in Atlanta, I reconnected with my love for baking from working in commercial kitchens.
After working some time in a local bakery and later becoming the executive pastry chef at a fine dining restaurant in downtown Atlanta I decided to open my own bakery.
I have since sold the bakery but my passion for food is still persistent.
Amy Kimoto-Kahn is a wife and mom of three who lives in Boulder, Colorado. As a student of her families' long history of cooking , she shares recipes on her food blog, easy peasy japanesey. She is the best-selling cookbook author of two umami-packed cookbooks: Simply Ramen(Race Point, 2016) and Simply Hot Pots (Race Point, 2019). You can find her sharing food experiences and travels on her Instagram
Amy is a graduate of the Miyajima Ramen School in Osaka, Japan. She’s taught a popular series of Asian-inspired cooking classes for Williams-Sonoma. Her best-selling first book, Simply Ramen, compiles 70 traditional and non-traditional ramen recipes for the noodle lover. Her recent book, Simply Hot Pots brings hot pot cooking to your table.
She’s published articles for (and been written up in) All Recipes,Pen-Online , BAMCO, and Edible Marin & Wine Country. Amy is inspired by the struggles and joys that her mother, Yvonne, faced during and after WWII in California—including, the cookbook that her mother and friends (the self-dubbed “Dames”) inked, which is now sold at the National Japanese American Museum in Los Angeles .
In Amy’s own words: “I enjoy the process, the bringing together of family and friends—the warmth and memories cooking and eating can invoke and the pleasure of tasting something that is so satisfying with the reward that you’ve created it.”
Patrick Davis is an entrepreneur, publisher and author. For 25 years, he served as chief executive officer of Davis® Brand Capital, which he founded and built into a respected global brand consultancy and investment firm. He has been integral to strategic work for numerous iconic brands, many of them in the food, beverage and spirits space. He has consulted extensively for a number of renowned chefs and cookbook authors, and leading cookbook publishers.
Patrick currently focuses most of his energy on growing Unbound Edition Press, an independent publishing house he founded to advance high quality work that might not appeal to mainstream publishers – including thoughtfully challenging books about food culture.
Also an accomplished poet and literary critic, Patrick is a member of the American Academy of Poets. His most recent writing is featured by Gertrude Press, Great River Review and Provincetown Arts. Additionally, he has ghost-written five books for the world’s major publishers. He conducted his doctoral research as a fellow in American literature at Washington University in St. Louis, where he taught for seven years.
"With The Food Society, we intend to expand the stories that cultures and families create through food, and give voice to the stories they share around tables," he says.
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