Last Wednesday, I attended the first of South Africa Tourism’s Taste Makers Series in New York at Marcus Samuelsson’s restaurant Red Rooster in Harlem. The Taste Makers Series is a marketing campaign to reconnect African Americans to South Africa.
There is such a kinship with African Americans and Black South Africans. Starting from the parallels of segregation and apartheid and continuing with cultures that are very similar from signature music that’s born out of experiences, soulful foods and gatherings that are unique to Juke Joints in America and Shebeens in South Africa.
Wednesdays event was elegantly casual. The food Red Rooster presented, which is indicative of his menu, was a fusion of African American and African cuisine like Fried Chicken with a spicy curry sauce, bread bowls filled with pulled curried chicken and spicy shrimp. We were serenaded by Lorraine Klaasen with soulful South African Jazz and given inviting presentations from industry experts and frequent travelers to South Africa, one of which was yours truly. The presenters painted a picture of the many wonderful experiences you can have in South Africa from cultural to the most adventurous. South Africa is truly a place where you “Leave Ordinary Behind”
I’d like to thank Sthu Zungu, President of South African Tourism, USA and her team in New York for putting together such a wonderful event and including Advantage International in their Taste Makers Series.