Summer Whitford, aka the “Food and Wine Diva,” is the author of Join Us At The Embassy, a book about cuisine and culture from ten countries as seen through the eyes of their ambassadors in Washington, DC. Written as a cultural guide and culinary travelogue, Join Us At The Embassy is the ultimate guide to the customs, traditions, and foodways of each country.
Summer and her book have been featured on local and national television and radio including Fox’s Strategy Room, ESPN’s The Food Dude, and CNN’s The Buzz, in addition to her appearances at public and private food, wine, and book events.
Not only an author, Whitford is a professional chef/pastry chef, writer, and food and wine educator. She is the President of Chez Vous Productions, Inc., a food specialty and lifestyle company. With over twenty years in the business, Summer Whitford has extensive experience as a chef/caterer, writer of books, articles, newsletters, and television programming on food, wine, culture, and travel.
Most importantly, she’s a Thirsty Girl because, as the “Food and Wine Diva” she pours her heart and soul into anything that has to do with the good things in life — food, wine, friends, and traveling to new places — what she calls “life’s tasty bits.” That’s just what a Thirsty Girl is all about. Her motto: Dine Well. Live Fully. Travel Often.
Summer has always had an insatiable curiosity about people, history, gardening, geography, and food and cherish every sight, smell, sound, and emotion. In the long run this has made her travels more enriching, her cooking more complex, and her writing more intuitive. The act of breaking bread is a fundamental, universal human activity that’s simple and easy to relate to, no matter what one’s religious, political, cultural, ethnic, or tribal traditions may be. Learning about another country’s cuisine can help us better understand what values are important to its people and how they cook, eat, love, and live their lives.
This epiphany compelled her to study international affairs in college and then eventually become a chef. Along the way, she researched and cooked a range of international cuisines, taught herself pastries, cake decorating, and bread baking, and worked with some of the best French, Italian, and international chefs in St. Louis, Missouri and Washington, DC.
But this wasn’t enough. She wanted to be her own boss and create her own dishes. Summer and her husband launched Chez Vous, a catering and lifestyle company that they successfully ran for 15 years. Their clients ranged from the Speaker of the House, to ambassadors, movie production companies, corporations, etc. At the same time, she began teaching food and wine to consumers and the trade, dabbled in wine list consulting, and even worked in wine retail. And then the writing bug took hold and she got the chance to write an entire series of food and travel shows for the Discovery Channel, which was the beginning of her writing career.
Ever a Thirsty Girl, she just can’t tear herself away from food and drink and writing. These days you can usually find Summer working on her blog, Delicious Prose, cooking up something new, or working on a couple of book projects.
If you want to get in touch with Summer, you can reach her at: email@example.com