At a weekday lunch she just concocted for friends, Cynthia Groseclose is sitting cross-legged on the floor. We are, too, on folded Mexican blankets around a low table dressed with gauzy linens, a bottle of Vino Verdhe, and stems of lavender in a glass.
It’s a beach picnic moved indoors because of rain, and Cynthia’s menu brings on the sunshine. She’s made sienna-hued salads of spicy chickpeas, butternut squash, and a red curry and agave vinaigrette. There’s a roasted carrot and harissa hummus, soft naan bread, and fresh yogurt in an aqua-blue crock.
In this scene of whites, blues and sun-gold, Cynthia, a self-described “sea person,” is barefoot. A tiny charm in the shape of California hangs from a chain at her neck. It’s an easygoing afternoon. As a cooler to the spice, we sip sparkling water blended with dark cherries, basil, and lime. The flavors are bright, and the conversation flows for hours...
Food stylist, recipe developer, chef, mentor
Cynthia Groseclose lives (best) in the salt air—whether she’s at her home in South Carolina, working in Manhattan, or on frequent stays on the sunny California coast. Her food styling has been featured in national advertising campaigns, James Beard Award-nominated cookbooks, and regional and national editorial publications. Recent clients include Food & Wine, Cooking Light, Le Creuset, Caribou Coffee and Garden & Gun.
Growing up, Cynthia spent many a Chattanooga afternoon in her family’s kitchens. Her grandmother’s creamed corn and fried chicken were just the beginning. After college, Cynthia earned a Diplôme de Cuisine at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris, and worked in Manhattan kitchens before moving to an Atlantic-facing home in Charleston—and to a focus on food styling.
Cynthia is currently developing recipes for a blog and book, Suppers by the Sea, that combines her passions for the ocean, and for healthy, coast-inspired menus. She also contributes recipes online at The Inertia. Cynthia loves surfing with her family, and she’s a brand ambassador for the California-based women's surf and lifestyle brand, Carve Designs.
- by Sandy Lang, 2017