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  • Writer's pictureDeborah Yaffe

Dining out

I don’t know about you, but I miss dinner parties.

You remember dinner parties: those occasions on which you gathered with friends – indoors! – to share cooked food while sitting close together, without facial coverings.


Dinner parties will be back one of these days, I trust. In the meantime, there’s “Dining with Mr. Darcy,” an online lecture promising “a culinary romp through Georgian and Regency food history.”

The Zoom webinar, delivered by writer and food historian Carl Raymond, will take place tomorrow at 6 pm (Eastern), with a recording available for online viewing from July 22-26. The cost is $20, or $15 if you’re a member of the sponsoring organization, the Royal Oak Foundation. Royal Oak is an American non-profit that supports the work of Britain’s National Trust, the charity dedicated to preserving historic buildings and landscapes in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.

Raymond promises to discuss how the rapid social and economic changes of the eighteenth century spilled over into the Georgian kitchen, affecting what was eaten (remember that pineapple in the recent TV adaptation of Sanditon?) and how it was cooked. He’ll focus especially on food in Jane Austen’s life and works and “consider what one might have encountered should one have had the coveted opportunity to share a meal with Mr. Darcy, himself.”

At the moment, I’m not picky: I’d be happy to share a meal with almost anyone I’m not related to. It doesn’t have to be Mr. Darcy! Barring that opportunity, however, this Zoom webinar sounds like an engaging and mouth-watering event.


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