The Spice Trade of the Medieval World

“The starting point for European expansion had nothing to do with the rise of any religion or the rise of capitalism – but it has a great deal to do with pepper.”

– Henry Hobhouse


Diners will travel across the medieval world as we map out the complex series of trade networks, which moved precious spices like pepper, cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves from Asia to all the way to Europe. Each course comes from a different city along the Silk Road, the 7,000 mile long trade route which spanned the globe from Indonesia to Italy. We’ll make stops in Quanzhu, Calcutta, Baghdad and finally Venice, diving into the history of each city and its role in the spice trade. We’ll also look at the larger cultural, political and economic impacts of Medieval European’s obsession with spices.




Indian Salad

jackfruit, mango, plantain, sesame, mustard seed


Stuffed Eggplant

coconut, curry leaves, fenugreek, pepper





Mongolian Bear Stew

bear, asafoetida, grains of paradise and saffron


Ishkane Spread

azerbaijani lamb, Iranian style buns, lotus root, ginger, sesame







Samak Mashwi

river fish, sumac, walnuts, sebagh sauce





Purple Carrott Halwa

Ktaiffi Rosewater custard


Fritters of apples with currents & spice