The Harlem Renaissance that spanned between 1918 until the mid-1930s is historically known as one of the most profound and influential eras in black culture. Coined “The New Negro Movement,” it was known for the cultural, social and artistic explosion that took place in Harlem that stretched across the ocean, influencing black expats living in Paris at the time.
Bringing it all back to life more than 80 years later is event planner and wine enthusiast Evonne Everett of Chic Wine Events in southern Florida. On September 27, Everett will host more than 200 guests during her Soultry Speakeasy event in Dania Beach that will capture the essence and importance of an era that still has a strong cultural and artistic influence today.
“It will be a culinary experience. It will be wine and food, 1920s fashion and live musical entertainment. It is just to highlight our culture and where we were during the Prohibition Era,’’ says Everett who changed her career from finance to hospitality in pursuit of professional and personal fulfillment.
An Experience Not to be Rushed
With its Harlem Renaissance theme, it will be an evening with dapper gents and classic ladies all dressed in 1920s attire and ready to experience a soulful culinary experience with one another.
The event will start on the red carpet with a fashion correspondent waiting to interview guests about their fashion choices for the affair. This will be followed by a 45-minute sparkling cocktail reception before the main experience begins that will feature a multi-course meal with wine pairings along with dessert as the finale. All of this to the live sounds of a local performer and her 5-pc band.
“It is always an experience with food and wine. Who you drink with, what you eat with it [wine], what was the atmosphere,” says Everett, who designed the event to be educational as well through the tasting of various wines and pairings offered throughout the evening.
Since coming back from Florence, Italy in 2012, she definitely has a greater appreciation for food and wine along with the entire dining experience. After completing the TuttoToscana program at Florence University of the Arts where she spent five weeks before heading to New York for a week of events that culminated at the James Beard House, Everett is now a big advocate of the Slow Dining movement which has become a way of life for her. “I learned about the Slow Dining movement where dining is a culture. Dining is not meant to be rushed. Dining is an experience that you have with friends and family. You’re not worried about a waiter rushing you to get out of that table and flip it for the next patrons.” This philosophy is one that guests will experience this month.
While 1920s fashion is not required, is it strongly encouraged to bring the entire experience of the Harlem Renaissance to the forefront. Everett says, “Blacks experienced culture in a very soulful and unique way and fashion was a part of it.”
Tickets are $100 per person or $175 per couple. The event will be held at the Gallery of Amazing Things located at 481 South Federal Highway in Dania Beach.