The Guild of Food Writers Lecture Dinner 2011 – Dr Nathan Myhrvold

Nathan Myhrvold

Lecture Dinner 2011 – Dr Nathan Myhrvold and the Modernist Cuisine: The Art and Science of Cooking

Date: Tuesday 11th October
Event Time: 18:30
Address: Radisson Edwardian Bloomsbury Street Hotel,9-13 Bloomsbury Street,London WC1B 3QD

Tickets for the lecture, drinks/canapé reception, and dinner are £60 for non-members.

Tickets for the lecture only are £15 for non-members.

To reserve a place, please email

The Guild of Food Writers is delighted to announce that Nathan Myhrvold will be giving the 2011 Guild Lecture on 11 October.

This is a rare opportunity to hear how Nathan, who has had two highly successful but complementary careers, from being Microsoft’s first Chief Technology Officer, to training and working with some of the world’s top chefs, came to write Modernist Cuisine: The Art and Science of Cooking.

Modernist Cuisine was published earlier this year in six volumes, to great academic acclaim. It is unquestionably one of the most intellectually ambitious (and deeply coveted) works on the science of food and is destined to become one of the great food books of all time.

Harold McGee, himself a former Guild lecturer, described Modernist Cuisine as a ‘landmark contribution to the craft of cooking and our understanding of its underlying principles. Its scale, detail, and eye-opening graphics are unmatched by any other book on the subject.’ The book includes recipes from many chefs working with cutting-edge techniques, including Ferran Adrià (of the late El Bulli), and he consulted with Britain’s own Heston Blumenthal in the course of his work. Those of us who write, edit, illustrate or publish food books may feel a mixture of envy and relief on hearing how the project grew.

Dr Myhrvold’s lecture will take us through the research involved in creating his monumental and magisterial book, a process that took over three years and sometimes involved a team of over 30 people. ‘Originally I wanted to make a 600-page book’ says Dr Myhrvold. ‘Then it kind of grew to 800 and, of course, we wound up at 2,400.’After explaining the creation of the book, he will then go on to discuss a few techniques and topics that he regards as being of particular importance for the home kitchen of the future.

Myhrvold’s formal education includes degrees in mathematics, geophysics, physics, mathematical economics and theoretical physics. In his post-doctoral work at Cambridge University, Myhrvold worked on quantum theories of gravity with Stephen Hawking. He is surely one of the most extraordinary of the many extraordinary speakers to have delivered a Guild lecture.

This special dinner will have a Scottish theme, in honour of the event’s generous sponsor, Highland Park whisky. There will be a long whisky drink for sipping before dinner and a wee dram after dinner.


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