Poppy Tooker

On this week's show, we learn what some local activists, restaurateurs, and food producers are doing to try to stay viable while keeping everyone safe as the novel coronavirus pandemic affects virtually every aspect of the food industry.

We begin with Mark Schettler, manager of Bar Tonique and vocal advocate for New Orleans' service workers. When all bars were ordered closed at midnight on Monday, March 16th, Mark switched into activist mode. We hear how hospitality industry workers are dealing with the crisis following the shuttering of businesses and learn how you can help.

Is a career in food the right choice for you? On this week’s show, we’re exploring culinary careers from all angles. We begin by looking at two educational food programs in New Orleans. First, we’ll meet members of the New Orleans Culinary and Hospitality Institute’s first graduating class along with their instructor, Chef Alison Vines-Rushing. NOCHI offers a fast track into professional kitchens, awarding a professional degree in just 100 days.

The Southern Food and Beverage Museum
Louisiana Eats!

Since 2015, Louisiana Eats has called the Southern Food and Beverage Museum home. Now in its eleventh year, SoFAB showcases culinary highlights of 15 Southern states and Washington D.C. It's more than just a museum, though. It’s also an active part of New Orleans' food and beverage world, with a state-of-the-art kitchen where cooking classes are regularly held and budding entrepreneurs try their hand at launching new food businesses.

The Ghost of Julian Etinge Haunts a couple at Tujague's Restaurant
Ian Wrin

There's a little something spooky in the air because it’s that time of year again! On this year’s special Halloween edition of Louisiana Eats, we’re getting up close and personal with some ghostly friends and the places they haunt. We begin with a visit with our resident medium, Debbie Duvall who recently put host Poppy Tooker in touch with Tujague’s famous cross-dressing ghost, ⁠Julian Eltinge—but not after giving her the fright of her life!

"Viva Cuba!"
Poppy Tooker / Louisiana Eats

Cuba and New Orleans are tied together in many ways, from our Creole flavors to our laid back attitude – but maybe most of all, in our music. Later in this episode we’ll meet veteran travel agent Alina Fernández. She's a Cuba native and president of Cuba Travel New Orleans, a company that specializes in organizing legal trips to Cuba. She helps explain the new travel restrictions and tells us about the trip she's organized for the Havana Jazz Festival in January 2020 (cubaneworleans.com)  Back in December of 2015, Louisiana Eats host Poppy Tooker had the opportunity to join the Preservation Hall Jazz Band on their landmark visit to Cuba for the Havana Jazz Festival. Over the course of a week there, Poppy took excursions into the countryside to learn about tobacco production and the art of cigar making, dined in delicious paladares, and toured markets and organic farms.

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