Next Meetup

Journey through America's culinary history while eating great Afghan food
Profs and Pints presents: "The Story of American Cooking," an examination of our nation's culinary and eating habits over time, with Allen Pietrobon, adjunct professor of modern American history at American University and visiting professor at Trinity Washington University. Want to be a big hit at the dinner table this Thanksgiving? Impress folks with your deep knowledge of American food history! Prepare by hearing award-winning Professor Allen Pietrobon tell the strange tale of what people have been cooking and eating here since the Mayflower arrived on our shores. You'll learn how immigration, economic forces, politics, religion, gender, race, culture, foreign policy, and debates over national identity all have played a role in determining what went into our bellies. Professor Pietrobon, who previously wowed Profs and Pints audiences with talks on Prohibition and the Gilded Age, will start out by telling the real story of the first Thanksgiving. He'll seat us at a table at the world-renown American restaurants of the 1890s and trudge with us through the bread lines of the 1930s. We'll push a wonky-wheeled shopping cart through the 1950s “dark ages” of American cuisine with its cavernous supermarkets peddling frozen TV dinners and Jell-O salads. We'll join the protests at the lunch counter sit-ins of the 1960s and venture into the edgy new "ethnic" restaurants in the 1980s. For dessert, we can all scoff at today’s $15 avocado toast. He'll discuss how, over the course of the past century, the United States went from being revered for having one of the best food cultures in the world — a cuisine so deliciously unique that in the early 1900s wealthy Europeans would travel to America simply for culinary tours— to today being (however unfairly) the subject of international ridicule for our junk foods, fast foods, and processed frozen meals. String cheese and SPAM anyone? What caused this change? Does cuisine really reflect a nation’s culture? You'll learn what food can teach us about a nation’s history. While you listen, you'll be able to dine on whatever delicious Afghan food you've ordered from Lapis, the restaurant upstairs. (Advance tickets: $12. Door: $15, save $2 with a student ID). Advance tickets available at

La Pop, a cultural salon

1847 Columbia Avenue NW · Washington, dc

What we're about

Profs and Pints ( brings professors and other college instructors into bars, cafes, and other venues to give fascinating talks or to conduct instructive workshops. They cover a wide range of subjects, including history, politics, popular culture, horticulture, literature, creative writing, and personal finance. Anyone interested in learning and in meeting people with similar interests should join. Lectures are structured to allow at least a half hour for questions and an additional hour for audience members to meet each other.

Although Profs and Pints has a social mission--expanding access to higher learning while offering college instructors a new income source--it is NOT a 501c3. It was established as a for-profit company in hopes that, by developing a profitable business model, it would be able to spread to other communities much more quickly than a nonprofit dependent on philanthropic support. That said, it is welcoming contributions (separate from any ticket purchases) to help cover its advertising costs as it seeks to build up audiences large enough to sustain itself in metro Washington DC and, potentially, other cities. All money contributed to this group will be spent on advertising and promotion to reach larger audiences.

Thank you for your interest in Profs and Pints.


Peter Schmidt

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