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Al Spoler, well known to WYPR listeners as the wine-loving co-host of "Cellar Notes" has had a long-standing parallel interest in cooking as well. Al has said, the moment he started getting serious about Sunday night dinners was the same moment he started getting serious about wine. Over the years, he has benefited greatly from being a member of the Cork and Fork Society of Baltimore, a gentlemen's dining club that serves black tie meals cooked by the members themselves who are some of Baltimore's most accomplished amateur cooks.
His most rewarding immersion in cooking came through his work as a television director at MPT. Spoler served as off-line editor and assistant director on two series featuring the legendary French chef Pierre Franey. He also worked with Mexican chef Patricia Quintana, and with Bed and Breakfast expert Gail Greco on her series "Country Inn Cooking". Al says traveling all over the US visiting country inns and taping recipes that they prepared in little makeshift television kitchens was an incredible education.
Spoler's tastes in cooking are influenced by regional tradition and contemporary casual French fare. Never slavish to recipes, he is never happier than improvising a Sunday dinner with whatever ingredients come to hand.