A Foodie’s Fantasy Realized


 Letter From The Editor

AY Magazine ‘does food’ each and every month. 

Each issue, we introduce you to, or provide insight into, the culinary vision of the state’s best chefs and restaurants. I have the true privilege of sitting across the table from them—warmed by stories of their initial inspiration and continued passion for their craft. A dream come true for a foodie like me.

In each instance, the chefs share a common mission: to present their best to diners.   

This past October, I watched Governor Asa Hutchinson slice and serve homemade apple pie at the Governor’s Mansion, as he and Department of Heritage executive director Stacy Hurst announced the debut of the Arkansas Food Hall of Fame. It was kismet.

As if fate could be any more delicious,  AY Magazine is thrilled to be exclusively unveiling to you the winners of the first class of the Arkansas Food Hall of Fame!

The names on this list are legendary, which is why we have devoted most of this issue to those who made ‘the cut’. The honorees can be found starting on pg. 28. If you haven’t dined with them, I recommend you immediately put this issue in your car and use it as your gastronomical guide while driving across the state to discover some true dining pleasures. (You can also access the list at aymag.com/food.)

In addition to our celebration of Arkansas’ food, this month’s Arts Scene, pg. 14, celebrates outstanding artists recognized by the Arkansas Arts Council. From this group we feature Reese Rowland, a creative talent, whose work you may have already encountered as you entered one of the beautiful structures around the state birthed from his vision.

Go online to aymag.com for this month’s Historical Gem; Arkansas food and travel writer Kat Robinson, looks at the state’s oldest continually-operating restaurant, The White House in Camden.

Finally enjoy a little down time after savoring the state’s great food and beer; then, let’s “run it off”.  AY contributor and runner,  Jillian McGehee, talks with two Little Rock Marathon runners—orthopedic surgeon Larry Nguyen and our own Final Thought columnist, Sonny Rhodes—on successfully managing long-distance running, no matter your age or exercise habits. Find it online at aymag.com.

And so, congratulations to the inaugural class of winners and finalists in the first Arkansas Food Hall of Fame! Truth be told, we are the real winners—the residents of Arkansas, and the visitors from around the country and world. We have the pleasure of enjoying their incredible food with our dear friends around their tables—where we are treated like family.




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