Mark your calendars for a night to remember! On September 15, the enchanting Meadow Lane Farm is set to host an exquisite Dinner in the Meadow, a celebration of community, culinary artistry, and the undeniable talent of Trent Shank, the owner and chef of Plum Southern Kitchen & Bar in Durham.
Trent Shank’s culinary journey is a testament to his passion and innate talent for the culinary arts. Hailing from the wild western suburbs of Dallas/Ft. Worth, Trent discovered his love for cooking early on and quickly realized he had a natural knack for it. His journey began with a remarkable achievement – winning a national culinary competition while still in high school. This triumph opened the doors to scholarships at the prestigious New England Culinary Institute, where he not only excelled but graduated as the top of his class.
Post-NECI, Trent embarked on a journey to gather professional experience, leading him to the beloved Relais & Chateaux property, Twin Farms, in Barnard, Vermont. After two fulfilling years, he made a bold move to the West Coast, where he wore multiple hats – first as a chef and then as a farmer at the renowned Fess Parker Winery. It was here that Trent’s culinary creativity reached new heights as he developed the restaurant’s garden, cultivating everything imaginable, including the pigs that became a part of a special love story.
In September 2020, Trent and pastry chef Emma Spalding Shank tied the knot, celebrating their union with a feast that included a special pig named Bruce, grown, loved, and served to their guests. Just two weeks later, fueled by their shared passion for food, the couple embarked on a cross-country journey to Durham, North Carolina, where they opened the doors to Plum Southern Kitchen & Bar.
Inspired by the farmers and producers in the Durham region, Trent curates Plum’s seasonal menus, showcasing a fusion of Southern cuisine with Mexican, Cajun, and Asian flavors that hold a special place in his heart. This culinary marriage of diverse influences reflects Trent’s commitment to creating unique and unforgettable dining experiences for Plum’s patrons.
As the Dinner in the Meadow approaches, anticipation builds for an evening filled with delectable creations, enchanting views, and the warm hospitality that defines Trent Shank’s culinary legacy. The event promises to be a celebration of community, flavor, and the enduring love story between Trent and Emma, who have chosen Durham as their home to grow both personally and professionally.
We are truly fortunate to have Trent Shank and Emma Spalding Shank as the culinary power couple at Plum Southern Kitchen & Bar. Their dedication to excellence, creativity, and the local community ensures that every dish served is a testament to the rich tapestry of flavors that make dining at Plum a truly exceptional experience. So, join us on September 15 for a night under the stars, as we celebrate the magic of Meadow Lane Farm and indulge in the culinary delights crafted by the talented Trent Shank.