Ask The Expert: 12 Questions For A Winemaker

André Hueston Mack, 45, is a winemaker and former sommelier at some of the world’s top restaurants including French Laundry in Yountville, California, and its sister venue Per Se in New York City. He got into the wine industry after quitting a successful desk job in the financial investment sector,…

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The Future Of Environmental Justice

For 24 years, Mustafa Santiago Ali was an employee of the Environmental Protection Agency, working on environmental justice (EJ). Also known as environmental equity, EJ generally refers to addressing the disproportionate adverse impacts of industrial pollution on low-income and minority communities. It’s a cause that is personal for Mustafa, but…

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An Evening With Kurt Fuller

At least 10 times a day, people stop Kurt Fuller to tell him they swear they’ve met before. What’s actually happening is that they’re recalling one of the almost 200 roles that Kurt, 64, has played in movies including massive hits like Ghostbusters II, Wayne’s World and Scary Movie or scene-stealing roles in television…

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The Portrait Painter

Jonathan Blum is a Washington, DC, born painter who now lives in New York and travels the world selling his unique paintings that feature an unusual roster of images: Rabbis, llamas, other animals, foreheads and more. “Most artists are pursuing a particular style and do different thing in their styles….

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Getting Festive With Strangers

In the almost 10 years I’ve been meeting strangers for a meal to interview them, I’ve engaged with a huge range of people that I’d never otherwise have had the honor of chatting with and learning about. For the holidays, I reached out to a handful of the people who…

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A Feast With Frank Brigtsen

Earlier this month I was in New Orleans for a holiday, and I had to chance to dine with Frank Brigtsen. He’s the owner of the namesake restaurant Brigtsen’s, a local landmark that has been serving up his unique style of Creole and Cajun cooking for more then 30 years….

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Strangers In New Orleans

Later today, I fly to New Orleans for my annual Labor Day holiday — and I’m looking for strangers to interview. If you live in the city, or know someone that lives there and would be great to interview, get in touch. I’ve had some great interviews in the city,…

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A Conversation About Cuba

Here’s the 100th dinner interview with a stranger! It’s my lunch in Miami with Sebastian Arcos, associate director of Florida International University’s (FIU) Cuban Research Institute (CRI). Sebastian knows what he’s talking about — he was born and raised in Havana, grew disillusioned with the Castro regime in his teenage…

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Support For This Podcast

Jessica Fontana, who along with her husband Santino featured as the most recent dinner interview on this site, has just released the first in a new podcast series, Support For This Podcast, that satirizes the NPR podcast Fresh Air hosted by Terry Gross. Check it out at this link. The first episode features…

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Meet The Fontanas

Dinner 99 is online! In late March I was in New York for the weekend and had the chance to interview actors Santino and Jessica Fontana. I’d read about their joint career in the arts in a great New York Times article about their wedding, and thought they’d have interesting…

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