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Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Bad Bitches launches all-female pop-up dinner series

Ladies first

Posted by Kinsey Gidick on Wed, Apr 15, 2015 at 10:46 AM

click to enlarge Bad Bitches Sarah Adams, Kelly Kleisner, and Randi Weinstein don't take shit in the kitchen - JONATHAN BONCEK
  • Jonathan Boncek
  • Bad Bitches Sarah Adams, Kelly Kleisner, and Randi Weinstein don't take shit in the kitchen
In the immortal words of Tina Fey "You know what? Bitches get stuff done." We couldn't agree more. But if you need additional proof here's Bad Bitches, a new, all female pop-up dinner series launching April 26.

Founded by freelance chef Sarah Adams and Oak and The Macintosh pastry chef Kelly Kleisner, the series was crafted to showcase the many talents of Charleston's F&B women. "It's a boys club," says Adams of the food and beverage industry. "So we said, let's get a bunch of bad bitches together." Adams says she knows some people will be turned off by the title, but she's completely OK with that. "It's F&B, it's raw, it's who we are," she says. "We couldn't call it 'Esteemed Women of Charleston.'"

And it couldn't feel more on time. In chef roles alone, this past year Charleston saw the arrival of Amalia Scatena as executive chef at Cannon Green, Katie Lorenzen-Smith as exec. at Tavern & Table, and Chelsey Conrad taking over for Stuart Tracy at Butcher & Bee. Meanwhile, Chez Nous' Jill Mathias has been garnering praise for setting her own course at the tiny French restaurant, while women like Charleston Grill's executive chef Michelle Weaver have long been blazing the trail for women in the Holy City. And that's not to mention the dozens of female pastry chefs, back of house staff, bartenders, sommeliers, servers, managers, florists, event planners, photographers, guest winemakers, and guest chefs the Bad Bitches pop-ups plan to include.

From April through September, each month the Bad Bitches will introduce a different decade-themed dinner taking guests through women's liberation one meal at a time. Butcher & Bee's Randi Weinstein, the event organizer, explains the idea in an email:
The series will take diners on a journey from the 1950s-present day highlighting influence, women, cuisine, and beverage from the decades. This dinner series will present a different aesthetics from already existing local events. The servers will be in period attire, the music will be hand selected according to the generation, and diners will leave with more knowledge on women’s impact on cuisine and beverage through history than they came with.

For the kick-off on April 26, Bad Bitches presents: "The 1950s: Era of the American Matriarch." "In the 1950s women were still predominantly in the house, in charge of making three meals a day. That was their source of pride," explains Adams. "But it's also the start of a transition to refrigeration, meals in a box, things that were freeing women from making meals from scratch."

All of these amazing women will be under one roof on April 26, 2015. #badbitcheschs #EatLocalChs #chseats

Posted by Bad Bitches Charleston on Thursday, April 9, 2015

To recreate the period, the Bad Bitches will don retro costumes and present a dinner Adams describes as "homey, familiar, and classic." And to help diners understand the Era of the American Matriarch, a narrator will host the event. Not exactly dinner theater, think of it as educational dining.

"So many pop-ups, you show up, bring your friends, take your Instagram pictures, and go home," says Adams. "We want to take people on a journey." 

For their first journey, Conrad, Weaver, Adams, Miller Union's chef de cuisine Emily Hansford, Kleisner, former Butcher & Bee pastry chef Emily Cookson, and O-Ku beverage director Lindsey Raines will present a five-course dinner. Butcher & Bee will host the inaugural event. Tickets are $65 and it's BYOB. 

But the cash isn't going into the organizers' pockets. Adams says 100 percent of ticket sales from the series will benefit the Bad Bitches Scholarship fund. "Getting into the culinary field is really expensive, from buying knives to taking the somm test." says Adams. "What better way to strengthen the F&B community than with a scholarship?"

For tickets to Bad Bitches April 26 event, click here

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