APT caught up with travel host Darley Newman to talk season 11 of her PBS history and culture show, “Travels with Darley.” Newman casts a wide net in the first two episodes of the season, showcasing a diversity of Alabama chefs and entrepreneurs from across the state.
Newman has packed her Alabama itinerary with some familiar locations and soon-to-be favorites, all while sharing the stories, cultures and flavors that make Alabama so unique.
In “Part I,” Newman visits James Beard award-winning chefs, including Scott Peacock in Marion, Ala. to learn the art of Southern biscuit-making and Chris Hastings of Hot and Hot Fish Club in Birmingham to hear how he pioneered farm-to-table in the 1990s. Between the fine dining, Newman also hits classics like Rama Jama’s in Tuscaloosa and Irondale Cafe in Irondale, Ala.
“Part II” includes a Montgomery staple Chris’ Famous Hot Dogs and recognizable Mobile restaurants like Squid Ink Eclectic Eats & Drinks, The Noble South and former NFL player Bob Baumhower’s Las Floriditas.
“Being aware of a sense of place is really important,” Newman said. She hopes those watching will begin to notice not just what’s on their plate but also their surroundings.
“If you take a bite of something you're eating, if you close your eyes, if you listen to the sounds…you're imprinting a memory in your mind that will stick with you for a long time,” Newman said. “And that's what life is all about.”
In “Part II,” Newman learns Chris’ Famous Hot Dogs, a mom and pop diner, served legends like Hank Williams and Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
“I find that once you start to talk to someone at a location, there's a story there. You just have to figure out what it is,” she said. “You’ll enjoy the food and the experience so much more when you dig a little deeper.”
Listen to the new “Travels with Darley” podcast on your favorite podcast app to learn more about Newman’s week-long visit.