MOCAREADS: Ten Restaurants that Changed America

Wed, Mar 15, 2017 @ 6:30pm - 8:30pm

Tickets: (includes museum admission): $42/adult with copy of book; $12/adult; $10/student & senior; Free for MOCA member
Click here to purchase tickets


Save $8 by purchasing your ticket with a copy of Ten Restaurants that Changed America ($38.10 at the MOCA Shop).


In his new book, Ten Restaurants that Changed America, Paul Freedman reveals how the history of our restaurants reflect nothing less than the history of America itself. Whether charting the rise of our love affair with Chinese food through San Francisco’s fabled The Mandarin, evoking the richness of Italian food through Mamma Leone’s, or chronicling the rise and fall of French haute cuisine through Henri Soulé’s Le Pavillon, Freedman uses each restaurant to tell a wider story of race and class, immigration and assimilation.


In conjunction with MOCA’s exhibit Sour, Sweet, Bitter, Spicy: Stories of Chinese Food and Identity in America, please join co-curator Kian Kho Lam in conversation with Freedman about his book and on how Cecilia Chiang’s restaurant The Mandarin influenced American’s palate and craving for Chinese food. 


Paul Freedman is a professor of history at Yale University where he has taught since 1997. His doctoral degree was awarded in 1978 by UC Berkeley. His primary responsibilities are in the field of medieval European history. He is also interested in the history of food and cuisine. In 2007 Freedman edited Food: The History of Taste, which won a prize from the International Association of Culinary Professionals and has been translated into ten languages. His book Out of the East: Spices and the Medieval Imagination (2008), looks at the desire for spices in the Middle Ages and how it led to European exploration and conquest. Food in Time and Place, (2014) a co-edited volume, appeared under the auspices of the American Historical Association. Ten Restaurants that Changed America, a way of looking at US food history through ten examples, was published in September, 2016. Ten Restaurants that Changed America was recently nominated for an IACP award.


Kian Lam Kho is a food writer, consultant, and founder of the Chinese cooking blog Red Cook. Red Cook was a finalist for the James Beard Foundation Award in 2011. Kho teaches Chinese cooking classes at the Institute of Culinary Education, Brooklyn Kitchen, and Haven’s Kitchen. His cookbook, Phoenix Claws and Jade Trees: Essential Techniques of Authentic Chinese Cooking is the culmination of years of research on Chinese cooking techniques and their implementing in the home kitchen. He is the co-curator of Sour, Sweet, Bitter, Spicy: Stories of Chinese Food and Identity in America, an exhibition at MOCA on view until September 10, 2017.