Ancient Rhythms, Ancient Grains: A Social Club Chat With Nion McEvoy

The second in our series of McEvoy Ranch Social Club Chats, this event explores the historical and cultural intersections between music and food and how they combine in traditional cultures to heighten the sensory experience.

Our Chat begins in the Victorian with an in-depth conversation between Nion McEvoy and Ken Albala, food historian and professor at the University of the Pacific, emphasizing the sounds and cuisine of Near and Middle Eastern cultures.

Following the Chat, Culinary Director Jacquelyn Buchanan will demonstrate how to prepare a staple in the Egyptian diet: Dukkah. An intoxicatingly fragrant spice mix used for dipping meat, fish, or vegetables, this condiment is traditionally made with spices and nuts.

Our afternoon continues in the Courtyard where you’ll enjoy a sampling of McEvoy Ranch wines and beautifully prepared meze – a selection of small plates or bites traditionally served with drinks in the Middle East and the Mediterranean. For your listening pleasure, explore the sounds of The Qadim Ensemble whose music evokes the spiritual heritage and diversity of the regions of Armenia, Greece, Morocco, Israel, and Turkey, to name a few.

Our Chat concludes in the Frantoio for one last bite and shopping in our charming retail store.

Delight your senses with this culturally diverse afternoon of informative conversation, food, wine, friends, and ancient sounds.




Ken Albala knows food. He is a Food Historian, Professor of History at the University of the Pacific, and Founder and Director of the Food Studies MA program in San Francisco, and has written or edited more than 23 books relating to food, the history of food, or cooking. Ken is the winner of the Gourmand World Cookbook award for Three World Cuisines: Italian, Mexican and Chinese. His latest book is Noodle Soup and his current project “Walking with Wine,” involves his exploration of Northern California’s hiking trails with a sippy cup of wine.

Learn more about Ken Albala.



Qadim is a word found in both Arabic and Hebrew meaning ‘ancient’ as well as ‘that which will come.’ The ensemble’s repertoire includes Arabic, Jewish, Turkish Sufi, Hebrew-Yemenite, Armenian, Greek, Ladino and Moroccan music, celebrating the common musical and spiritual heritage of the region’s cultures, while honoring the great diversity found within them.

Acclaimed for their passionate performances, The Qadim Ensemble is comprised of accomplished and acclaimed musicians. The San Francisco based band has attracted a growing global audience who are responding to their authentic musicianship and timely message of peace and cross-cultural appreciation.

Their most recent CD, Eastern Wind, received rave reviews world wide, reaching #7 on Billboard’s World Music charts.

Learn more about The Qadim Ensemble.



Aug 12 2018


11:00 AM - 02:30 PM


$135 General | $95 Social Club


McEvoy Ranch
5935 Red Hill Road, Petaluma, CA
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