Maia Surdam looks for the places where food and history meet, and tries to spend as much time there as possible. An educator, historian, baker, and gardener, Maia has cultivated a career that allows her to connect these various interests and share them with others. She has spent the past 20 years studying U.S. history, a pursuit that included earning a Ph.D. at the University of Wisconsin, writing a children’s book and teaching in college classrooms across the country. Life takes unpredictable turns, and one such turn led Maia to OWL Bakery where she is currently a part-owner and enthusiastic baker. Over the past three years, Maia has worked in nearly every position at OWL. Most recently, as the Lead Bread Baker, Maia helped to ensure that all OWL bread includes some portion of locally-milled, stone-ground flour. Her current research project involves the fascinating historical connections between beer and bread.
Over 20 immersive signature events are featured throughout the weekend! Tours, dinners, parties, foraging and more await.
This inspired, friendly and free-spirited food scene tucked in the mountains of Appalachia has been called “Foodtopia,” but the locals just call it home. Plan your trip now.
Learn more about the vision and values that guide Chow Chow's work to celebrate and enrich the foodways of Southern Appalachia.