Les Dames d’Escoffier International is a fancy way of saying female culinary badass. The invitational organization, made up of accomplished leaders in the food, wine, and hospitality industry, was founded back in the 1970s as a way to promote equality.
Today, the organization has funded $4 million in scholarships, helping women like Amanda Hesser (Food52) explore opportunities within the industry and become influential leaders themselves.
Locally, the LDEI chapter was founded in 2005 by (CK) and continues to induct new members. It’s a veritable who’s who of Charleston’s culinary scene.
Next week, they will host their annual Autumn Affair and swear in seven new members: farmer Celeste Albers (the Green Grocer), publicist Annie Byrd Hamnett (Byrdhouse PR), pastry chef Lauren Mitterer (Wild Flour Pastry), director Angel Postell (Charleston Wine + Food Festival), chef/instructor Jacqueline Thurston (Art Institute), Chef Michelle Weaver (Charleston Grill), and farmer Maria Baldwin (Our Local Foods).
To celebrate their new roster of culinary badasses, the Dames will be throwing a party at Lowndes Grove. They’ll have more than 100 wines to taste, food from some of Charleston’s best producers, and live music. The silent auction is stuffed with some great items too, including a private class with Nathalie Dupree in her home, a kids’ butterfly garden, dinner for two at Fish and overnight accommodations at William Aiken House, and even the use of the Heirloom Book Company’s space for a party.
Tickets are $45 and available at ldeicharleston.com.