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Gluttony: Deconstructing Dinner

Gluttony: Deconstructing Dinner

Thursday, May 23, 2013

The New York Academy of Sciences

Remember the old adage "you are what you eat?" It may have once held sway, but how do we get at "what we eat" in a world where picking an apple off a tree is less likely than gorging on a handful (or two) of apple-flavored jelly beans? At this event we'll explore the origins of the ingredients in some your favorite guilty pleasures, specifically the ones filled with processed ingredients. You'll find out just where those ingredients come from and how they made their way into your diet.

In 2008, Steve Ettlinger took apart a particularly iconic treat in his book "Twinkie, Deconstructed," tracing the origins of its ingredients back to unexpected places, like the gypsum mines of Oklahoma. In his forthcoming book with photographer Dwight Eschliman, Foodstuff, 75 of the most common food ingredients are examined in detail—for better or for worse. Ettlinger and Eschliman will share some of their findings, raising important questions about whether or not the fact that something is edible means that we should be eating it.

The event will be moderated by Dan Pashman, the creator and host of the James Beard Award-nominated podcast and blog The Sporkful, and will also feature J. Kenji Lopez-Alt, the Chief Creative Officer of the Serious Eats family of websites, the largest independent food blog in the world.

Reception to follow.


Registration Pricing

Nonmember Student$20



This event is part of the Science and the Seven Deadly Sins Series

In this series we're looking at some of the ways the Seven Deadly Sins show up in the sciences. To do that, we're bringing together top scientists, authors, chefs, urban planners, and many others to help us explore our base nature. Each event will feature indulgent receptions afterwards, as well as opportunities for you to interact with the speakers and one another. Join us for this vice-ridden round of events!

Wrath Goes Viral, Oct 17, 2012
Pride: Flying Cars and other Broken Promises, Nov 28, 2012
Greed: Willing to Do Anything, Dec 11, 2012
Lust and Love in the Animal Kingdom, Feb 12, 2013
Sloth: Is Your City Making You Fat?, Mar 13, 2013
Envy: The Cutthroat Side of Science, Apr 30, 2013
Gluttony: Deconstructing Dinner, May 23, 2013

Learn more about the series here.



Steve Ettlinger

Steve Ettlinger has been an author, editor, and book producer since 1985, and has helped create over forty books, all but two in the popular reference area. His books explain complex and daunting but common things like wine, artificial food ingredients, and DIY hardware.

A selection of just some of those titles accounts for over a million copies sold. His seventh and most recent book is "Twinkie, Deconstructed," which describes where artificial food ingredients come from and how they are made. He has written or edited books on ethnic cuisines, beer, and kitchenware, contributed to web sites, and helped create the bestselling series, "Wine for Dummies". Ettlinger is an occasional contributor to the Huffington Post (see all posts by clicking here) and The Daily Beast, and has written Op-Ed pieces for the Los Angeles Times and the New York Sun.

Dwight Eschliman

Dwight Eschliman has been living and working in San Francisco for over ten years. His work spans a variety of subjects, from athletic shoes to Legos, clean rooms to castles in Germany, the newest tech products to Twinkie ingredients. His editorial photography appears in New York Times Magazine, San Francisco Magazine, Esquire, GQ, Details, New York Magazine, Dwell, and Wired. Dwight's advertising projects include Apple, Palm, Clorox, Scion, Microsoft, Adidas, Absolut, Audi, Jawbone, T Mobile, HP, and Beautifull.

J. Kenji Lopez-Alt

Chief Creative Officer, Serious Eats

J. Kenji Lopez-Alt is the Chief Creative Officer of the Serious Eats family of websites, the largest independent food blog in the world. After graduating from MIT, he learned the craft of cooking the traditional way—working his way up from prep cook to chef at many of Boston's top restaurants including No. 9 Park and Clio. He spent the next three years as an editor at Cook's Illustrated Magazine in Brookline, MA, where he produced some of the most innovative recipes the magazine has printed, as well as cohosting several episodes of the public television show America's Test Kitchen. He currently resides in Harlem, New York with his wife and dogs where he pens the "Food Lab" column for Serious, dedicated to unraveling the mysteries of home cooking with science. He is the co-author of "Serious Eats: A Comprehensive Guide To Making and Eating Delicious Food Wherever You Are," published by Clarkson-Potter, and the author of the upcoming "The Food Lab: Better Home Cooking Through Science", to be published by W. W. Norton in 2014.


Dan Pashman

Dan Pashman is the creator and host of the James Beard Award-nominated podcast and blog The Sporkful, where he discusses, debates and obsesses over ridiculous food minutiae, in search of new and better ways to eat. He likes to say "It's not for foodies, it's for eaters." He's also a contributor to NPR's Weekend Edition Sunday and the co-host of Slate's Table to Farm podcast and Cooking Channel's "Good to Know." He's currently working on the first Sporkful book, to be published in 2014 by Simon & Schuster.

Travel & Lodging

Our Location

The New York Academy of Sciences

7 World Trade Center
250 Greenwich Street, 40th floor
New York, NY 10007-2157

Directions to the Academy

Hotels Near 7 World Trade Center

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140 Washington Street
New York, NY 10006
Phone: 212.577.1133

The New York Academy of Sciences is a member of the Club Quarters network, which offers significant savings on hotel reservations to member organizations. Located opposite Memorial Plaza on the south side of the World Trade Center, Club Quarters, World Trade Center is just a short walk to the Academy.

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Other nearby hotels

Millenium Hilton


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Club Quarters, Wall Street


Eurostars Wall Street Hotel


Gild Hall, Financial District


Wall Street Inn


Ritz-Carlton New York, Battery Park