Out of the Woods: Cocktails & Conversations

Out of the Woods hosted by THOM Magazine returns, inviting attendees to spend an intimate evening with some of the South’s finest tastemakers who inspire us for a panel discussion and showcase of Southern food and hospitality. The event welcomes special guests Robby Melvin, Southern Living’s Test Kitchen Chef & Director; Libbie Summers, Artistic Director of “A Food Inspired Life”; Jessica Little owner of Sweet Grass Dairy; and Whitney Long and Cheri Leavy of The Southern Coterie.

Event Details:
Thursday, November 16
5:30 pm

Home of Mr. & Mrs. Russell Turner


Admission includes tastes & drinks.

Welcoming Special Guests
Robby began his career with Chef Frank Stitt, then worked his way up to a chef de cuisine under Chef Chris Hastings at Hot and Hot Fish Club while becoming an instructor and private caterer, too.
Now Robby is the Southern Living Test Kitchen Director and Recipe Developer for Time Inc. Food Studios in Birmingham, Alabama.
A typical week for Robby means that he and his team test approximately 200 recipes, and when prep for the holiday editions comes due, that number can reach even higher. His recipe for success walks the thin line of staying true to Southern classics while creating variations that feel fresh.
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Libbie is the face behind her Food-Inspired Life brand, and is recognized as a food and lifestyle tastemaker. Her work has been seen in the pages of Better Homes & Gardens, Vogue, ELLE, Camille Styles, Glitter Guide, Redbook, People, Garden and Gun, Condé Nast Traveler, on the OWN Show, and many more.
As one who wears many hats, Libbie also serves as the Creative Culinary Director of the Terra’s Kitchen- an innovative meal delivery service sending healthy farm-fresh ingredients and fresh-prepped recipes to subscribers in an eco-friendly manner.
For Cheri, born with a knack for instantly connecting with people, The Southern Coterie seemed like a natural progression. It’s Cheri’s enthusiasm and inspiration that has made The Southern Coterie and its live events – The Southern C Summits – a must visit for Southern entrepreneurs looking to make valuable connections.


Constantly on the lookout for the newest talent in the South, Cheri has an authentic passion for meeting, greeting and giving entrepreneurs a platform to speak about their brands.
Whitney spent years building a successful career as a scout, stylist and contributing editor for some of the biggest names in print media like
Coastal Living, Southern Accents, Southern Living and 
Better Homes & Gardens plus various special interest titles.
Now she draws on her years of curating unique places and people for the lifestyle magazine industry to create connections, find strategic partners and cultivate a talented team of writers and presenters.
After working at Sweet Grass Dairy for three years, Jessica and her husband Jeremy were given the opportunity to purchase the business in 2005. Sweet Grass Dairy cheeses have won over 30 national and international awards since 2002.
Jessica is a Certified Sommelier through the Court of Master Sommeliers, a Certified Cheese Professional through the American Cheese Society, a member of the Fellowship of Southern Farmers, Artisans & Chefs of the Southern Foodways Alliance, and was recently inducted to the prestigious international Guilde de Fromagers dedicated to promoting cheese knowledge around the world.
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