Wednesday, June 22, 7:30 PM
Molly Birnbaum, author of Season to Taste
In conversation with editor Matt Weiland
Aspiring chef Molly Birnbaum was about to enter the prestigious Culinary Institute of America when a car accident destroyed her sense of smell – a critical element in perceiving flavor, and therefore, in the cooking process. Though devastated by her accident, Birnbaum picked herself up and set off on a grand quest to understand and overcome her condition. Throughout the process of uncovering the mysterious science of olfaction, Birnbaum also shares the moving story of how she found her way: falling in love, regaining her sense of smell, and slowly beginning to cook once again. Birnbaum talks about her story with her editor (and our Fort Greene neighbor) Matt Weiland, with the help of some of the scents – from cinnamon, cedarwood, and fresh bagels to rosemary, chicken, lavender, and apple pie – that she rediscovered. Audience members will also get to participate in a delicious “smell test” that offers insights into the centrality of the sense of smell!