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Canada’s Best Culinary Authors & Foodies!

Jen Agg

Literary Dinner with author of memoir, I Hear She’s a Real Bitch.

Laura Calder

Award-winning television host and bestselling author

Chef Andrew George Jr.

Literary Dinner with Joseph Hoare Gastronomic Writer In Residence

Theresa Albert

Instructor for the the 3-day intensive Cookbook Writing Retreat

Dana VanVeller

Literary Lunch with food blogger and author of Feast

Lindsay Anderson

Literary Lunch with food blogger and author of Feast

Kevin Sylvester

CBC broadcaster and award-winning author of the Neil Flambé Capers series

Jonah Campbell

Farm Lunch with author of Eaten Back to Life

Alice Zorn

Literary Dinner with award-winning author of Five Roses

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Chef Andrew George Jr. brings the rich traditions of aboriginal cuisine into the modern world with his book Modern Native Feasts and Feasts for all Seasons. He states “Aboriginal people have a strong tie to the land and to their traditions, and it has been my goal to fuse these traditional values with modern and innovative cooking techniques.” Join us in an evening filled with traditional teachings and the following menu:

Three Sisters Soup and Stoney plains Bannock (Feasts for all Seasons)
Trio of Smoked Fish (Trout, Arctic Char, Salmon)
Braised Buffalo Ribs with Red Pepper Pesto, and Baby Root Vegetable and Wild Rice Pilaf (Modern Native Feasts)
Bannock Galette with Wildberry Coulis
Hudson Bay tea
Wine Pairings (15oz)

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Chef Andrew George Jr. is the Stratford Chefs School’s 2017 Joseph Hoare Gastronomic Writer in Residence, a member of the Wet’suwet’en Nation in British Columbia, and author of Modern Native Feasts and Feasts for all Seasons. He was a participant on the first all-Native team at the Culinary Olympics in Frankfurt and chef delegate on a US State Department initiative called “Culinary Diplomacy: Promoting Cultural Understanding Through Food.” George also teaches Native students to cook and develops Native menus for restaurants and hotels.


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The evolution of food and cuisine is an art that is constantly changing. In Jonah Campbell’s latest book, Eaten Back to Life, he explores our culture of eating and indulging, and the reasons behind our obsession with food. For this unique lunch, Church Hill Farm opens its grounds to the public for a literary lunch that includes a meal on their farm. Owners Max and Vicki Lass have a commitment to sustainability, harkening back to the farming practises of their forefathers, and one can see all animals outside, wandering in the pastures, with the freedom to come and go from the barns as they choose.

Join us for an open-air discussion of food, literature, cultural influences, and a new perspective on the way we see food. Arrive at 11 am to explore the farm and receive informal farm tours. The buffet lunch starts at noon with a discussion, reading, and Q&A with Jonah Campbell. The menu will be a ploughman’s style buffet comprised of:

A Selection of Farm-Raised Sausages: Pork, Beef, and Lamb
Church Hill Farm Seasonal Produce and Preserves
Farm-Raised Devilled Eggs
Farmstead Cheese from Neighbouring Mountainoak Cheese Ltd.
Cold Fresh-Pressed Organic Juice from Stratford’s Farm Juice Co.
Or a Glass of Beer from Stratford’s Black Swan Brewery
Baguettes from Downie Street Bakehouse

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Jonah Campbell is a Canadian researcher and author. He spends time researching with the Social Studies of Medicine unit at McGill University, and managing the wine programs of Bar Alexandraplatz and Bar Barbara. Campbell also manages a blog called www.foodandtrembling.com. He’s made contributions to the National Post, VICE, Harper’s, and CULT Mtl. His latest book is entitled Eaten Back to Life.


Take part in this rare opportunity to sit in on an actual classroom session at the Stratford Chefs School. You’ll join students for a culinary writing theory class where Joseph Hoare Gastronomic Writer in Residence Chef Andrew George Jr. will talk about translating personal history into a cookbook. You’ll learn about his personal journey from the Bush (Wet’suwet’en traditional territories and camps) to Berlin and how this influenced his culinary writing.

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Chef Andrew George Jr. is the Stratford Chefs School’s 2017 Joseph Hoare Gastronomic Writer in Residence, a member of the Wet’suwet’en Nation in British Columbia, and author of Modern Native Feasts and Feasts for all Seasons. He was a participant on the first all-Native team at the Culinary Olympics in Frankfurt and chef delegate on a US State Department initiative called “Culinary Diplomacy: Promoting Cultural Understanding Through Food.” George also teaches Native students to cook and develops Native menus for restaurants and hotels.


Join us for an exciting afternoon tour of Italy and discover new treasures and old favourites. Learn about some of the many indigenous varietals the country has to offer as taught by one of the region’s top sommeliers, Robert Miller. In this session, we will taste and discuss six wines from the land of “Oenotria” and see why Italy is the most diverse and exhilarating wine producing country in the world! A savoury cheese board will complement your drinks, and we’ll also have literary wine quotes to add a sip of sophistication!

Taverna Pazzo offers affordable food in an energetic and convivial setting, taking its cue from the neighbourhood restaurants of New York. The menu features sustainable seafood, house-made pastas and gnocchi, and locally-sourced meats and produce while the Pizzeria, located in Stratford’s oldest cellar, offers the best thin crust pizza and pasta in town. All of their simplified flavours in the Italian tradition combine well with their diverse list of wines by the glass and bottle.

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Robert Miller has over twenty-five years of experience in the beverage industry. A certified sommelier with the International Sommelier Guild, Miller also holds accreditation with The Wine & Spirits Education Trust in the UK, the American- based Society of Wine Educators and the Court of Master Sommeliers, as well as a Certificate in Oenology & Viticulture from the University of Guelph. He currently works with wine distributor The Vine Agency & Cave Spring Vineyards, as well as running his drinks consulting and promotions company, “guud wein.” Robert is also one of less than 100 persons worldwide to have passed the Vinitaly International Academy’s prestigious Italian Wine Ambassador program.


Take part in this rare opportunity to sit in on an actual classroom session at the Stratford Chefs School. You’ll join students for a culinary writing theory class where Joseph Hoare Gastronomic Writer in Residence Chef Andrew George Jr. will talk about translating personal history into a cookbook. You’ll learn about his personal journey from the Bush (Wet’suwet’en traditional territories and camps) to Berlin and how this influenced his culinary writing. This is the same theory class that is offered at 1:30 pm.

Chef Andrew - Resized

Chef Andrew George Jr. is the Stratford Chefs School’s 2017 Joseph Hoare Gastronomic Writer in Residence, a member of the Wet’suwet’en Nation in British Columbia, and author of Modern Native Feasts and Feasts for all Seasons. He was a participant on the first all-Native team at the Culinary Olympics in Frankfurt and chef delegate on a US State Department initiative called “Culinary Diplomacy: Promoting Cultural Understanding Through Food.” George also teaches Native students to cook and develops Native menus for restaurants and hotels.


Reminiscent of a time with great music, literature, and drinks, Literature on the Rocks is here to take you back to the novels that started it all! Join us for an evening of cocktails and conversation all inspired by the literary classics. This unique event will be hosted by Junction 56 Distillery—a local favourite. Hope to see you at the bar!

Award-winning Junction 56 Distillery makes the highest quality products with local ingredients. They are committed to challenging traditional perceptions and pushing the boundaries of innovation in all spirit categories. They leverage tried and tested techniques as the basis, then add their own unique methods to deliver a fresh twist on traditional spirits.

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Five Roses by Alice Zorn is an engrossing story of the complicated relationships and histories between four women living, loving, and working in Pointe St Charles, a working-class neighbourhood in Montreal. The city of Montreal itself is a character in Five Roses, and Zorn explores the gentrification of the Pointe St Charles neighbourhood as a backdrop to the turmoil—and, ultimately, growth—affecting her main characters. Now, menu items such as cretons and pouding chomeur have become trendy in an area of the city where they were once a necessity, but have nevertheless been staples for well over a century. Join Alice Zorn for a literary dinner that pays homage to the culinary history of working-class Montreal and Quebec with the following menu:

Smoked and steamed salmon rillettes, with celeriac, apple, and baguette
Pea soup “aux habitants
Tourtière, with red pepper chutney and roasted Brussels sprouts
Pouding Chômeur, with spiced ice milk
Wine pairings included (15oz)
Revel coffee included

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Alice Zorn is the author of Arrhythmia and a book of short fiction, Ruins & Relics, which was a finalist for the 2009 Quebec Writers’ Federation First Book Prize. She has twice placed first in Prairie Fire’s Fiction Contest. Her novel Five Roses is a novel about overcoming the emotional fallout of a shattering loss. Fara, Maddy, and Rose’s lives intersect in Pointe St-Charles, Montreal, where a backdrop of gentrification mirrors the traumas that haunt these women, as well as their search for new bonds in place of their families who were destroyed.


Bring the whole family for a morning of laughs, illustrations, and great literature. Award-winning writer, artist, and broadcaster Kevin Sylvester hosts a unique breakfast event filled with literary discussions, astonishing art, and great food! Sample a breakfast of omelettes and garlic rosemary roasted potatoes that Kevin’s famous character, Neil Flambé, would cook. Join us for a feast and party the whole family will enjoy!

Kevin Sylvester headshot

Award-winning author, illustrator, and CBC broadcaster Kevin Sylvester has written the Neil Flambé Capers series (Silver Birch Award winner) and the MiNRs series (Tome Society Award nominated). He is loved by his fans for his engaging presentations at schools.


Learn what it takes to create snapshots worth talking about! Food photographer Terry Manzo will be holding a workshop to inspire bloggers, Instagrammers, and those with a great love of photography. Tools can be as simple as a pocket camera or a smartphone. Learn the basic knowledge needed for success such as the importance of composition, lighting, and camera angles. Discover the smartphone tools and apps needed for editing to create the perfect image. The course will take place in the Learning Centre classroom for visual presentations.

This course is limited to ten attendees, so sign up early and be a part of the fun!

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For thirty years, professional photographer Terry Manzo has been combining unique and compelling perspectives with strong technical skills. A Stratford Chef School alumni, she has exhibited regularly in Ontario and worked on several ambitious social media projects, posting daily or weekly photographs or photographic collages for a year during 2011, 2013, and 2016. She has taught photography courses at Gallery Stratford since 1999, and her commercial work encompasses a broad spectrum from publicity, events, products, concerts, and theatre, to people at work and play.


Be one of the very first people to receive a copy of award-winning television host and bestselling author Laura Calder’s brand new book, The Inviting Life, before it hits bookshelves!

Join Laura for lunch at Revival House as she launches The Inviting Life, ​her new book about how to live each day with the desire and determination to turn the ordinary into something lovely. During this launch, you will learn directly from Laura about the inspiration behind her book, the value of hosting and what makes a great host, and the importance of creating an inviting life. You will also have a chance to ask her your own personal questions. Included in the ticket price is your very own copy of Laura’s book, along with an opportunity to have it signed by the author. Each table setting will also feature a hosting tips card from The Inviting Life, a small floral gift from Stratford Blooms and a gift from Bradshaws that participants can take home at the end of the afternoon.

Join us for this fantastic literary meal and exclusive book launch!

Laura Calder

 


Vancouver-based writers, adventurers, and foodies Lindsay Anderson and Dana VanVeller travelled the True North to find the best in Canadian food culture. Today, they bring their inspiring stories and the unique recipes they’ve discovered to the Appetite for Words Festival in Stratford! With their incredible cuisine and inspiring friendship, this will be an event you won’t want to miss!

The menu will be created by Mercer and served family-style, and will be comprised of:

Salad of maple molasses braised pork belly, beluga lentils, pickled butternut squash, Soiled Reputations fall greens, wild blueberry and Black Swan barbecue sauce
Pickled garlic scape bannock with smoked butter
Grandma O’Donnell’s warm butter tarts, apple butter sorbet
Glass of Beer from Stratford’s Black Swan Brewery
Or Glass of Wine from Cave Spring Cellars

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Vancouver-based writers and adventurers Lindsay Anderson and Dana VanVeller embarked on a cross-Canada adventure that brought them to all 10 provinces and all 3 territories in search of diverse and interesting stories of Canadian food culture. The result is FEAST: An Edible Road Trip, a collection of recipes and stories. Dana has authored the food blog Spoon!, while Lindsay was a food blogger for Tourism Richmond’s 365 Days of Dining. Dana is currently working toward a Certificate in Food Security from Ryerson University and Lindsay holds a Masters of Food Culture and Communications from the University of Gastronomic Sciences in Italy.

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Show an Appetite for Words ticket and get a 15% discount at the following restaurants for lunch:
-Pazzo
-Red Rabbit
-Revival House

Show an Appetite for Words ticket and get a 10% discount off any coffee or tea at:
-revel Cafe


Go behind the scenes and see what it really takes to create a cookbook. This workshop will provide all the skills you need to create a bestseller, from tips on formatting, proof-reading, and copywriting to layout design, brainstorming, and recipe development. Nothing will be left off the table! Vancouver-based writers of the highly anticipated book Feast Lindsay Anderson and Dana VanVeller join us in an engaging workshop that is both educational and inspiring.
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Vancouver-based writers and adventurers Lindsay Anderson and Dana VanVeller embarked on a cross-Canada adventure that brought them to all 10 provinces and all 3 territories in search of diverse and interesting stories of Canadian food culture. The result is FEAST: An Edible Road Trip, a collection of recipes and stories. Dana has authored the food blog Spoon!, while Lindsay was a food blogger for Tourism Richmond’s 365 Days of Dining. Dana is currently working toward a Certificate in Food Security from Ryerson University and Lindsay holds a Masters of Food Culture and Communications from the University of Gastronomic Sciences in Italy.

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Leading in any industry is often difficult for a woman. Renowned restaurateur Jen Agg, however, finds strength in her femininity and isn’t allowing the standards set by society to hold her back. “You have to push your accomplishments, because—patriarchy,” she states. In her debut memoir entitled I Hear She’s a Real Bitch, Agg discusses her life in the restaurant business and her constant fight against sexism in the industry. Join us in an eventful, engaging evening discussing feminism, success, and how to survive in a man’s world. The menu, inspired by Jen Agg’s The Black Hoof restaurant, will include:

Consommé à la Milanese
Veal pastrami with Israeli couscous and celeriac
Pork belly with green molé and navy beans
Churros with burst fruit and beet sorbet
Wine pairings included (15oz)
Revel coffee included

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Outspoken and inspiring, and a superstar of the restaurant world, Jen Agg is the owner of The Black Hoof, Grey Gardens, Rhum Corner, and Cocktail Bar in Toronto and Agrikol in Montreal. She is a leader in the discussion of sexism and the mistreatment of restaurant workers. She has organized a sold-out conference called “Kitchen Bitches” that addressed gender, sexism, and injustice in restaurants. She is known as a respected voice of feminism on Twitter and an inspiration in the fight against patriarchy in the food industry. Author of the memoir I Hear She’s a Real Bitch, and a big fan of nachos, you can find her on most nights in one of her spots, tipping back rosé as slowly as possible.


Click Here to Buy Your Tickets!

Connect with Writers & Readers

The Appetite for Words Festival program features authors who have written about food, and fiction writers who allow food to become a strong component of scenes and/or the characters in their novels. The best part is, chefs from Stratford Chefs School create menus inspired by featured books so you can taste the words you’re reading. Our events also feature Literary Cocktail Tastings held at Junction 56 Distillery, and Wine Tastings at Pazzo.

Appetite for Words revolves around storytelling and is created for the enthusiastic and curious — anyone interested in reading, discussing and consuming food (that’s you, right?). We also have educational workshops and tasting sessions. Join us for our inaugural year as Appetite for Words features some of Canada’s best food writing talent.

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Learn and Get Hands-On!

Appetite for Words puts a lifetime of tasting and reading about food into practice with classes that draw on experience from Canada’s best. You can take a food photography or cookbook writing workshop, or roll up your sleeves and join students in a food writing class with Joseph Hoare Gastronomic Writer In Residence Andrew George Jr. The Stratford Chefs School also offers cooking classes to the public year-round.

Register for Hands-On Learning!

Learn the Art of Food Writing

Food writing can mean many things, and our intensive 3-day writing retreat will take you from concept to completion. Whether you want to write a kitchen memoir, compile your grandmother’s recipes into a book, or create your own cookbook, you’ll benefit from the rare opportunity to spend time with one of Canada’s best food writers to guide your way.

Learn about the Writing Retreats

Appetite for Words Dinners

If you want to taste delicious food throughout the year, sign up for our Appetite for Words Book Club! We’ll be hosting Appetite for Words Dinners and one-off events with visiting authors and food writers, so sign up for our mailing list by emailing AFWdinners@digiwriting.com. Between DigiWriting and the Stratford Chefs School, we put a lifetime of cooking, tasting, and reading about food into our events!

Join Appetite for Words Dinners

Food and Book Lovers Can’t Wait to Attend!

See what others have to say!

“Unique and inspired culinary literature festival.”

We hope to attend as many Appetite for Words events as possible in October. This unique and inspired culinary literature festival sprouted as a partnership, between Stratford Chefs School’s Joseph Hoare Gastronomic Writer in Residence Program and DigiWriting, in celebration of Stratford – a culinary and arts tourist destination like no other!

– Ryan Donovan and Carl Heinrich, co-owners of Richmond Station,Toronto

“A natural place to have readers and writers together.”

Stratford Writer’s Festival is a natural place to have readers and writers together.

– Kim Echlin, Giller Prize Nominee

Stratford: A fusion of literature and the culinary arts

Our unique programming offers an intersection of literature and the arts, from actors reading along with authors, to literary musical performances. There’s so much to see and do in Stratford, from strolling the acres of parks and gardens along the Avon River, to cafes and restaurants, theatre, art galleries and music.

FIND OUT MORE ABOUT STRATFORD

Meet our Sponsors & Partners

It takes a dedicated team to deliver a unique literary arts festival where writers can share their story. We are grateful to our sponsors and partners for their continued support.

Interested in Sponsoring? Contact Us!

F.A.Q. and Submissions Information

We hold events year-round

For further information regarding the submission process, please read through the questions and answers below. If you have any additional questions regarding eligibility or the submission process, please email us.

Participants at the DigiWriting Stratford Writers Festival and other literary events are invited based on the strength of their published work. Generally submissions are sent by publishers, but we do accept submissions directly from writers. In order to be considered for an invitation to appear at the Festivals or any year-round Festival events, publishers and authors are invited to submit a one page proposal along with any promotional materials or relevant press clippings.

To have work considered for DigiWriting Stratford Festival events, please send at least one copy and accompanying materials to:

DigiWriting
356 Ontario St.
#299
Stratford, ON
N5A 7X6

Or send electronic copies (PDF or ePUB) to: our email

Above all, we look for writing of exceptional quality, but we are also committed to representing a broad range of genres, styles and places of origin.
There is not a firm deadline for submissions but invitations and scheduling are usually finalized months prior to the event. Because there are so many submissions, the earlier you can get work to us, the more likely we will be able to seriously consider it.
While we prefer print copies, early reading copies and uncorrected proofs in electronic format (PDF or ePUB) for future releases are acceptable. Manuscripts, however, are not acceptable. We are most interested in books that will be available in time for the start of the festival. Please note that due to the volume of submissions, we cannot return material submitted, but books are donated to the Stratford Free Little Library project and relevant charities.
Yes, we do accept self-published books. Please follow the same submission instructions already posted.
Please note that while we receive many submissions and recommendations from enthusiasts, presentation slots in the schedule are limited. We are very grateful for this interest in our festival and do take time to consider proposals, but due to the high volume of submissions, we are unable to respond to every recommendation and only writers invited to participate will receive a response.

We’re not seeking to fill any jobs at Appetite for Words at present, but we do hire for big events. We can offer internships in food writing, events and marketing so if this is a requirement for you to finish your degree, email and tell us how you think you could help us out. We’re always on the lookout for those who are passionated about food and words. If that’s you, please get in touch.

And if you have a creative idea for Appetite for Words, please send any accompanying materials to:

DigiWriting
356 Ontario St.
#299
Stratford, ON
N5A 7X6

Or send electronic copies (PDF or ePUB) to: our email

We’re afraid a general entry ticket to all Appetite for Words events does not exist. This is due to the capacity limits of the multiple venues. Instead we have individually priced all main programme tickets so attendees can build their own festival weekend package. Further to this, after Appetite for Words, we run an intensive three-day food writing retreat.
Cookbook author and Food Network Host, Theresa Albert, takes your recipes from idea to concept in three days of instruction, one-on-one consultation and focused writing time.
We’re going to offer dinners based on the Literary Dinners we’re holding during the Appetite for Words festival. Sign up to stay up-to-date: AFWdinners@digiwriting.com
Mission
Stratford Chefs School is a not-for-profit career college focused on the innovative, hands-on training of high quality, aspiring chefs and culinary entrepreneurs.

Vision
To graduate tomorrow’s culinary leaders.

THE ROLE OF THE GASTRONOMIC WRITER IN RESIDENCE

Leads workshops about food writing; provides one-one-one consultations with students who are interested in food writing; presents readings of his or her work to both students and the public.

BENEFITS OF THE GASTRONOMIC WRITER IN RESIDENCE
The writer in residence will benefit the Stratford Chefs School and the wider culinary community in these ways:

1 | He or she will contribute to a more well rounded education for students, a primary objective of the School. The writer in residence will do this by helping students to produce well written documents and to understand how important these are for succeeding in the culinary industry.

2 | By executing a range of culinary / literary activities within the Stratford Chefs School and the broader community, the writer in residence will advance food writing as an important source of knowledge about food culture.

3 | By presenting public readings, he or she will help engage the
public to experience, enjoy and understand the gastronomy of our time.

The widely loved Joseph Hoare, former food editor of Toronto Life magazine, was immensely supportive of young writers interested in food and gastronomy, writers such as James Chatto, Lucy Waverman and John Allemang. After Mr. Hoare’s death in 1997, his family chose to honour his lifelong passion for food and food writing by means of an endowment to the innovative Gastronomic Writer in Residence at Stratford Chefs School, then renamed the Joseph Hoare Gastronomic Writer in Residence program.
For the first time in the School’s 34-year history we are offering spring and summer cooking classes and learning experiences devoted to the dedicated home cook. Welcome to our Open Kitchen.

Trade Secrets | Intensive workshops focused on a cooking technique, dish or product. Subjects include Wine, Pastry, Butchery and more.

Get Cooking! | Intensive workshops focused on themed recipes. Subjects include Bistro, Vegetarian, and International Cuisine.
Boot Camps | A series of classes focused on skill and knowledge development. Subject areas include Fermentation, Cookery, Pastry, Bread, and Wine.

Team Building & Wellness | Social and educational hands on cooking events for groups of 15 to 30 allow guests to cook alongside friends and colleagues or break into teams and compete.
Let us build a unique event to suit your team.

Appetite for Words: A Dinner Inspired by Five Roses by Alice Zorn

By |August 24th, 2017|

Stratford Chefs School program manager Randi Rudner discusses creating a menu based on the novel Five Roses by Alice Zorn for the Appetite for Words festival in Stratford.

Q&A with Write Now Retreat instructor Theresa Albert

By |August 14th, 2017|

Take your recipe book from concept to complete cookbook! We’re excited to have talented instructor Theresa Albert leading the "How to Write a Cookbook" Write Now Retreat. Read the Q&A with Theresa below to learn more about the retreat and how to get started writing your own cookbook!

Write Now Retreat: How to Write a Cookbook

By |August 14th, 2017|

Chef and author Theresa Albert will lead the "How to Write a Cookbook" Write Now Retreat. Take your recipe book from concept to complete cookbook over 3 days!

Join Book Lovers in Stratford from October 27-29!

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