Robert "Bear" Evans
|Carolina Food Co.
1400 Greene Street
Columbia, SC 29208
More about Bear:
As a child, Bear gained an appreciation for different backgrounds as his family divided time between Richmond and the farmland and fishing villages in the Northern Neck of Virginia. He enjoyed experiencing the multicultural rhythms of city life in Richmond while discovering a connection to the land and the meaning of sustainability in rural communities. After earning his first of five degrees, he “lit out for the territory.” Bear lived in Spain, Northern Africa, and Central America before returning to the U.S. In every place he visited, Bear enjoyed opportunities to meet locals who would welcome him into their homes, teach him local cuisine, and share food and conversation. Bear believes that when people sit down and share a meal, they can truly understand the meaning of community.
What is your favorite memory associated with food?
To have a favorite food is limiting the possibility that there might be something even more amazing around the next corner, or in the next country you visit, or something that someone will make for you, or even you making for yourself. I have experienced so many amazing meals with so many different people and in the most breath-taking places. But who's to say that a spicy boiled peanut at Soda City in downtown Columbia S.C. is more memorable than drinking a Café con Leche while sitting in a café in Granada, Spain with a spectacular view of the Alhambra?
What advice do you have for anyone learning to cook for themselves?
Travel, read, listen, eat with strangers, go to museums, grow vegetables, raise animals, go fishing, and relish everything around you. Doing so will help you understand and appreciate the story, history, tribulation, joy, and sorrow that goes into making a meal. In turn, all of those will transcend into the meals that you will create.
What is a fun fact the students should know about you?
I can wiggle my ears.