Broaden your education at Oregon Culinary Institute by learning from industry specialists.

Oregon Culinary Institute’s Distinguished Speaker Series was founded on the idea that education is everywhere around us; and can be imparted in a very interesting way by artisans, experts, and specialists in the food, wine, and hospitality industries; as well as authors, bladesmiths, and partners. Our overriding consideration for speakers is that they provide educational value to our students. See for yourself – some are outlined below.

Laura Anderson, Commercial Fisherman
Local Ocean Seafoods, Newport, Oregon
Laura Anderson is a third generation commercial fisherman at the forefront of the sustainability movement in Oregon, with a bayfront-location fish market and grill in Newport, Oregon.

Elias Cairo, Founder
Olympic Provisions, Portland, Oregon
Olympic Provisions is home to Oregon’s first USDA-approved salumeria, established in 2009, where Elias Cairo is salumist and owner. The 2012 edition of Saveur magazine’s annual “Saveur 100″ was released recently, and O.P. was featured for “making some of the finest charcuterie” Saveur has tasted.

Daren Hayes, Founder
Stirs the Soul Chocolate, Portland, Oregon
“Our chocolate tastes sinful and decadent without the stigma associated with ordinary chocolate. Proprietary techniques are employed to coax out the best flavor and aroma as an alternative to commercial roasting. We’re committed to conscious awareness and our chocolate is always fairly traded, organic, sustainable, raw and of high quality.”

Eric Dunham, Winemaker
Dunham Cellars, Walla Walla, Washington
Eric’s focus and philosophy are the same today as when he started – to use the best fruit sources possible and adopt a “minimalist” approach with regards to winemaking technique to create a wine that is both age-worthy, yet approachable now.

Susan Ungaro, President
James Beard Foundation, New York City, New York
Susan Ungaro, appointed President of the James Beard Foundation in April 2006, has been the recipient of numerous awards, was a participant in President Clinton’s Women’s Roundtables, and was honored by President Reagan’s Office for her “outstanding contribution to increasing consumer awareness in America.” Ungaro has overseen the expansion of the Foundation’s culinary scholarship program, the relocation of the annual James Beard Foundation Awards Gala to the prestigious Lincoln Center, and the first James Beard Foundation Taste America Food Festival, which took place in 20 cities around the country in September 2007.

Chef Bo Kwan, Owner
KOI Fusion, Portland, Oregon
Starting in 2009 as one mobile taco truck, Chef Bo Kwon was inspired by the genre of Korean Fusion. He set about creating his own niche within this category, using Mama Kwon’s secret family marinades, fresh vegetables, and locally-sourced tortilla vendors to create a new twist that’s uniquely Portland, Oregon.

Mark Kurlansky, New York Times Best-Selling Author
New York, New York
Kurlansky’s articles have appeared in a wide variety of newspapers and magazines including The International Herald Tribune, The Los Angeles Times, Time Magazine, Harper’s, New York Times Sunday Magazine, Food & Wine, Gourmet, Bon Appétit and Parade. Kurlansky has guest lectured all over the world and has had 19 books published and translated into twenty-five languages.

Matt Van Wyk
Oakshire Brewing, Eugene, Oregon
Matt is a beer industry veteran with 12 years of experience and numerous national accolades and awards including the GABF Small Brewpub Brewmaster of the Year in 2006 and a Silver Medal for Oakshire’s Overcast Espresso Stout.

Steve Jones
Cheese Bar, Portland, Oregon
“Hands down the best cheese shop in the city.” – Liz Crain, The Food Lover’s Guide to Portland.

Kurt Huffman
ChefStable, Portland, Oregon
Chef Stable invests in culinary talent, offering established chefs the opportunity to build and open their concept in partnership with a group of restaurant business professionals.

Patrick Taylor, Winemaker
Cana’s Feast Winery, Newberg, Oregon
Patrick first began crafting wines at Cana’s Feast Winery in 2004.Taking the reins in 2007, he has since been responsible for the direction, style and outcome for each wine, ranging from Sangiovese, Nebbiolo, Barbera & Primitivo, to Bordeaulais varietals, Rhone varietals, and Pinot noir.

Bob Kramer
Kramer Knives, Portland, Oregon
Since 1994, Kramer has become one of 120 Master Bladesmiths in the US, devoting his life to the single-minded pursuit of the perfect kitchen knife. His knives are a combination of artistry, old-fashioned craftsmanship, and modern technology.

Patrick Coleman, Portland Editor
Thrill List, Portland, Oregon
Self-acclaimed “glutton, clothes horse, drunkard geek”, writes about who’s moving where in Portland’s lightening-hot food scene, and “what’s opening right at this very second that I can’t wait to wait in line for”.

Ted Pappas, Founder
Big Bottom Whiskey, Hillsboro, Oregon
Big Bottom Whiskey is an independent bottler, striving to work under the same philosophies of independent bottlers in Scotland. Big Bottom Whiskey works with multiple distilleries for their base product and finishes them using various methods to perfect the final outcome.

Gwenan Marshall, Portland Area Manager
Rogue Creamery, Newberg, Oregon
The founder of Rogue River Creamery was so ahead of his time that he was dubbed “The Godfather of the artisan cheese industry.” Starting the company in the 1930s with unwavering dedication to quality, his mission was “to create an artisan cheese company dedicated to service, sustainability, and the art and tradition of making the finest handmade cheeses”, a tradition that continues today.

Lori Sobelson
Bob’s Red Mill, Portland, Oregon
Bob’s Red Mill is the nation’s leader in stone milling – dedicated to producing natural foods in the natural way – and offer the widest diversity of whole grains found anywhere. Their foods division, Bob’s Red Mill Natural Foods, produces more than 400 whole grain products from flours and hot cereals to baking mixes and grains.

Peter Schwartz, President
International Beverage Corporation, Dunwoody, Georgia
International Beverage Corporation imports and distributes the finest and most exclusive beverage brands in the world, including Single Malt Scotches, Blended Scotches, Tour Du Monde Cognacs, Armagnacs, Grappa’s and Tequilas.

Laura Anderson

Laura Anderson, Commercial Fisherman, Local Ocean Seafoods, which has become the premier destination for fresh, local seafood in Newport and on the Oregon Coast.

“Passionate chefs, real world simulations, and a diversity of students all helped make me a Kitchen Ninja.” – Kacy Lau, Baking and Pastry, Class of 2012