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The Æthelmearc Gazette staff received this missive from Lady Arianna dal Vallone and decided to dig a little deeper into her noble cause to resurrect an inactive kingdom guild.

One of Lady Arianna's courses at a feast she prepared at Siege of Glengary last year.

One of the courses at a feast Lady Arianna prepared at Siege of Glengary last year.

Good and Noble Fellow Citizens of Æthelmearc,

I am in the process of starting up a new and refurbished kingdom cooks guild.

Are you interested in period cooking? Do you want to learn more, share our knowledge and help others do the same? Want to do so in a period way with an actual guild structure to help each other?

Then come join us and help us get this off the ground together. An initial organization and ideas meeting will be held at the Annual Festival of the Passing of the Ice Dragon on Saturday, April 2 from 1 to 2 p.m. (specific room location to be announced later). If you are unable to attend, please feel free to contact me or to join the Æthelmearc Cooks Facebook group for further information.

Thank you,
Lady Arianna dal Vallone


Lady Arianna dal Vallone. Photo by Master Orlando.

Lady Arianna dal Vallone. Photo by Master Orlando.

How long have you been in the Society and what got you interested in cooking for the society?

I’ve been the SCA about eight years. Cooking actually came in as sort of a secondary thing. I did it mundanely for years and actually went to a votech high school for culinary arts. It was just easy to get into something I already knew. Cooking is a fun thing for me. Doing it in period was a new challenge.

What do you hope to accomplish at this meeting?
My initial ideas for what I hope we can achieve to be discussed at Ice Dragon are:
  • promotion of cooking and the consumable arts in Æthelmearc;
  • sharing knowledge among cooking and period cooking researchers;
  • helping those new to the art in finding resources, learning how to get started etc.;
  • having a group to go to for help both for educational issues or feast staff-related issues if you do not already have a staff;
  • being able to prepare refreshments or feasts as a kingdom group, not individuals or smaller groupings;
  • sharing the workload of the Kingdom Party at Pennsic; and
  • creating a standard for cooking art or consumable art to be judged in competitions.

Basically, we have a lot of people who cook in this kingdom and I think we could accomplish more together and organized than we do now.

Who do you hope will be able to attend the meeting? Join the guild?

Anyone who loves to cook, wants to learn how to cook in period, already cooks in the SCA, or wants to cook in the SCA. I want people of any and all levels regardless of if you just googled “medieval cooking” today or if you have a laurel for cooking in 14th century Norwegian style. This is supposed to be a supportive and inclusive community for those who enjoy and want to grow in consumable and food arts in Æthelemearc.

If those who are interested can’t make it to the meeting, how can they join in the fun?

Join the Æthelmearc Cooks Guild Facebook group or email me. I plan on posting to the Facebook group a summary of the meeting itself afterward as well.