Sunday, February 21st, there was a private tasting in Tucker that had a couple of unique twists! First, this invite-only tasting featured African cuisine from all regions of the continent. Secondly, the master chef is a Black man that owns a culinary school! Daryl Shular is the owner of the Shular Institute, Plateed Cooking School, plus Farmed Kitchen and Bar. He made sure the 150 attendees left satisfied, fulfilled, and enriched.
“We had a vision of creating the first Black-owned culinary school in North America, and here we are today,” said Shular. “Thank you, it would not have happened without the brilliancy of this gentleman here. I had the vision, he had to know how he’s the one who brought it together. But all the great pieces of the puzzle together. And what you all standing in, here, tonight is history.”
The tasting included wings from Zimbabwe, soup from Nigeria, juices from South Sudan, and spices from Morocco.
“We are going global, there are so many corporations that are driving this whole entire thing,” said Shular. “But we need each and every one of you to be a part of this, pushing this thing forward. Because this is a community-owned center here. Okay, we can’t do it by ourselves. We’re doing it in the middle of a pandemic. But we’re walking on faith, and I think everybody knowing here knows what I’m talking about.”
Shular says he plans on launching culinary schools in Ghana, Nigeria, and South Africa, the three nations that are the cultural touchpoints in Africa.
Meanwhile, the students at the Shular Institute are mostly self-motivated and very driven people. Byron says she made sure that Black and Brown kids are represented in this class.
“I have students here who have 4.2 GPAs that are being overlooked in their communities,” Byron said.
The Shular Institute is actively seeking to integrate the African culture into the culinary experience.
“He was so passionate about it being authentic,” said Adeola Sokunbi, a self-described culinary entrepreneur describing Shular’s passion. “And what happens in our culture all the time we see it no matter what type of cuisine they have. Don’t care about the authenticity. They make it. They just throw it out there. And he was so adamant with all of his experience. And when I was talking to my parents, they said, You didn’t tell me he was African? I said, ‘no, no, he, you know, I mean, he’s African.’