7.13.2007

My first scholarship win!

I arrived early to school today to meet the head of the school's Food Writers' Club to discuss my involvement in the club. I was absolutely ecstatic when she told me that I had won the school's "I Have a Dream" scholarship contest. This is the first scholarship I've ever won! I've pasted it below. Cheers, JF

My Culinary Dream
By JF

I remember it like it was yesterday. I was shopping at my local Whole Foods market and found my way over to its impressive selection of wines from around the world. As I do love good wine, being faced with a multitude of varieties is still a bit overwhelming to me. I am no expert on wine by any means, but am always looking to improve my education on the internationally adored drink at any chance I get. Much to my surprise and sheer delight I found the latest edition of Food & Wine’s Wine Buyer’s Guide. Upon arriving home, I quickly restocked my pantry and my refrigerator with the goodies I had purchased and made my way over to my living room sofa to be enlightened on the famed publication’s recommendations for selecting the best wine, as well as its top choices from around the globe. What I wasn’t expecting was to read something that would have an impact on my life from that moment on.

As I began to read the guide I was intrigued by the writing within the introduction. It was much more than just listings of countries, grape varieties and ratings. The person who wrote the introduction and compiled all of the information for this year’s guide, I thought, had to know what they were talking about. He, or she, had to be an expert in the field and be well educated on the information that got included into the guide. At that moment I stopped and thought about how much I enjoy not only wine, but also the world of food. A Journalism major, a lover of a good read and one who’s always had the desire to grow my skills as a writer, it was that moment that I realized that this is what I wanted to do. I would enroll at a culinary school in my area, go through the training that professional chefs go through and use my knowledge to explore the culinary world, and most importantly, write about it.

Exactly how many varieties of salt are there in the world? How does one know which variety to use for each dish? What is the difference between a $6.99 bottle of extra virgin olive oil from Italy and a $37.00 bottle, also from Italy? As my mind opened and my curiosities took hold, I knew I had found something special; a calling. I immediately ventured out to my neighborhood Powell’s bookstore and absolutely fell in love with my new favorite bookstore section; gastronomic literature. Reading excerpts from famed food writers such as: Anthony Bourdain, M.F.K. Fischer, Julia Child and Ruth Reichl had me completely hooked. A deep passion for food and a talent for communicating their passion with words on paper were apparent within their pieces of work. It’s the caliber of these writers, and more, that I look up to and hope to join the ranks of in the future.

Today, I’m embarking on my dream by first, enrolling into an accredited culinary diploma program; second, writing about the findings of my curiosities in the culinary world on a blog I recently created; and three, researching the market to pitch story ideas to local and national publications to, in hopes, become a published food writer. As I continue on this adventure it amazes me how extensive the world of food really is. In my quest to become a published food writer, I want to not only find answers to my own curiosities, but explore other topics that range from the importance of buying organic foods to the affects global warming could have on the quality of our food. Food is a commonality shared throughout the entire world. Everyday we might not go for a swim in a pool, or take a drive in a sports car, or a hike through Multnomah Falls, but everyday we eat. It is an act that is sometimes taken for granted. Through my writing I hope to bring curiosity and education about the culinary world to the masses in hopes to inspire everyone to savor every bite that’s taken.

2 comments:

Kelli Matthews said...

congratulations!!! Well deserved.

Sheila Saltmarsh said...

WOW Jenn! Again, you impress! Congrats....Much love, she

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