Francine Segan
Book Speaker
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Francine Segan

Fee Range: $4000 - $6000

Food Historian


Arts/Culture/MusicAuthorConsumer TrendsFoodHistoryLifestyleSpouse ProgramsTravel


New York


Francine Segan

Francine SeganFood Historian

Noted lecturer, food historian and writer, Francine Segan regularly appears on radio and TV.

Her many TV appearances include Today Show, Early Show, and Sunday Morning with Charles Osgood. In addition she has been featured on many specials for the History, Sundance and Discovery channels as well as the Food Network and PBS.  Ms. Segan is a frequent radio guest and a regular on Martha Stewart Living radio.

Both the James Beard Foundation and IACP nominated Ms. Segan’s latest book, Opera Lover’s Cookbook, for awards. She writes a monthly feature for the Tribune Media Syndicates, which has included interviews of such noted chefs as: Jacques Pepin, Lidia Bastianich, and Mario Batali.

Ms. Segan’s lively and informative lectures range in topic from Dining Customs of Ancient Greece to How to Taste Chocolate. She addresses audiences across the country for organizations including The Smithsonian Museum, Virginia Fine Arts Museum, New York Times Travel Show, 92nd Street Y, Museum of Natural History, Princeton Club, New York Chocolate Show, and Newport Historical Association.

 “Francine feeds her readers well—stomach and soul. She has a way of making me want to sing for my supper!
                               Rachael Ray



World’s Most Luxurious Foods

Caviar and truffles are only the beginning. Discover the stories behind rare foods like the world’s most expensive potato, a cluster of grapes auctioned at $25,000, Kopi Luwak coffee costing $100 a cup made from beans predigested by civet cats, and Buddha-shaped fruit. Learn about gold’s many culinary uses and about the spices worth their weight in gold. Come away from this amusing talk with lots of dinner-table conversation starters and ideas for opulent entertaining.

100 Years of Fascinating Food Trends

Discover the origins of iconic classics like pineapple upside down cake and Caesar Salad. Learn how feminism and the invention of the refrigerator combined to give us icebox cake and “sorority salad” and why Prohibition sparked a candy boom. Learn about make-do Depression era innovations like “mystery cake” and mock apple pie, WWII rationing, ‘50s cocktail party craze, and the Jackie Kennedy and Julia Child-influenced French craze. From molecular gastronomy to 3-D printed food, hear about the cutting edge—and very edgy—trends popular today.  

Elegant Entertaining in the Gilded Age

The Gilded Age—spanning from the 1860s through WW I—was a time of calling cards, horse drawn coaches, afternoon tea, cotillions, lawn parties, and formal dinners… a time when even picnics were served on fine china.

Learn the 19th century meanings of giving a lady a tulip instead a rose; discover the most popular toasts of the era and learn when it was proper to remove your gloves or tip your hat. Discover why ladies magazine’s of the 19th century advised bringing a bundle of sticks to a party. Learn the calling card equivalent of “unfriending” someone and why the nutmeg grater was the must-have accessory of the 1890s.

The event includes a trivia contest on the uses for now-obsolete objects, garnish-making demonstrations, and recipe handouts. 

Diet Fads Through the Ages

Fad diets come and go, but the idea of dieting has been around for centuries. From Hippocrates to Gwyneth Paltrow, from the Medieval wine diet to modern juice fasts, here’s a look at some of the most famous—and infamous—moments in dieting history.

Did you know that U.S. President Howard Taft pledged to slim down after getting stuck in the White House bathtub or that Elvis Presley tried the “Sleeping Beauty Diet”? Discover the Ancient Egyptian trick for tying a cord around the waist to prevent overeating, the truth behind Kellogg’s Corn Flakes, and more.


Enjoy a guided tasting as you discover the role Christopher Columbus and Casanova played in chocolate history, how decadent high society sipped chocolate in the 17th century and modern innovations like bacon chocolate!

Did you know that Napoleon indirectly helped invent a new chocolate flavor or why M&Ms and Nutella were created because of WW II? 

Ice Cream’s Cool History

Discover the fascinating stories behind our favorite frozen treats: banana splits, root beer floats, pie à la mode, Eskimo Pies, Bananas Foster, baked Alaska, and more.

We’ll trace these sweets back centuries to the cool treats enjoyed by Alexander the Great and Emperor Nero, who surely invented the first slushy when he sent runners to mountaintops to harvest glistening snow he ate flavored with fruit. Did you know that vanilla is the most popular ice cream flavor in the USA, accounting for over 25% of sales, with chocolate a distant second or Hawaii has an “ice cream bean” that tastes just like vanilla ice cream? Discover who invented the ice cream cone, why and the fascinating roles Thomas Jefferson and Ronald Reagan played in ice cream history.


To book this speaker please visit or call 508.485.8996