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Notes from a Young Black Chef: Kwame Onwuachi with Kat Kinsman

  • Museum of Food and Drink 62 Bayard Street Brooklyn 11222 United States (map)

“It may seem unusual for one so young to pen a memoir,” writes Dr. Jessica Harris. “However, Kwame Onwuachi has lived two or three lifetimes in his journey thus far.” By the time Onwuachi was 27 years old, he had opened—and closed—one of the most talked about restaurants in America, launched his own catering company with twenty thousand dollars that he made from selling candy on the subway, and became a fan favorite contestant on Top Chef.

In his new memoir, Notes from a Young Black Chef, Kwame Onwuachi confronts the complicated intersection of race, fame, and food. Join Chef Onwuachi and Kat Kinsman, Senior Editor at Food & Wine, for a vital conversation about Onwuachi’s journey as a young black chef through the world of fine dining, from the Bronx to Nigeria to Washington, D.C.

An informal reception with book signing will follow the conversation.

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Kwame Onwuachi is the executive chef at Kith/Kin and owner of the Philly Wing Fry franchise in Washington, D.C. He was born on Long Island and raised in New York City, Nigeria, and Louisiana. Onwuachi was first exposed to cooking by his mother, in the family’s modest Bronx apartment, and he took that spark of passion and turned it into a career. From toiling in the bowels of oil cleanup ships to working at some of the best restaurants in the world, he has seen and lived his fair share of diversity.  Onwuachi trained at the Culinary Institute of America and has opened five restaurants before turning thirty. A former Top Chef contestant, he has been named a 30 Under 30 honoree by both Zagat and Forbes.


Kat Kinsman is the Senior Editor at Food & Wine. Previously, she was the Senior Food and Drinks Editor at Time Inc.’s all-breakfast site Extra Crispy, the Editor at Large and Editor in Chief of Tasting Table, the Managing Editor of CNN’s Eatocracy, and the Senior Editor for AOL Food and Slashfood. Kinsman covers food, booze, lady-being, person-being, mental health, disabilities, sex, pop culture (especially YA novels), weddings and dogs. She is the author of Hi, Anxiety for Harper Collins imprint Dey Street Books, a KCBS Certified Barbecue Judge, proud member of the Southern Foodways Alliance and the vice chair of the James Beard Journalism Committee. She has a Masters Degree in Metalsmithing. She lives in a church in upstate New York part of the time and in Brooklyn the rest with her husband and two dogs.