Born and raised in Chicago, Ill., Samantha became fond of one of the city’s most iconic legacies: meat. Naturally, she came to love the rest of the things on the plate as she got older. She channeled this love into trying as many things as she could find – the weirder, the better. She graduated from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign in 2013 with a dual degree in News-Editorial Journalism and Italian. After graduation, she spent six months making craft spirits at FEW Spirits, LLC. in Evanston, Ill., and freelancing for Hogsalt in Chicago. She now spends her days writing about food & dining with The Oregonian in Portland, OR. You can also find Samantha’s musings at her photo blog: deepfriedandfrosted.tumblr.com.