Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Alice Waters?

I'm contemplating taking a run at the cookbooks of Alice Waters when I put my domestic life back together in a week or so. Doesn't she look a bit like Emma Thompson? But not as pretty.

I must confess, I have a grudge against Waters, based on a sour experience seven years ago when I wrote a story about Chez Panisse. Waters and her "people" treated me extremely poorly. Perhaps because I was affiliated not with Gourmet or Saveur, but with a AAA magazine that went out to millions of ordinary Americans, as opposed to a few elite tastemakers? I'll elaborate later, but let me just say that Waters' assistant at the time, Cristina Salas-Porras, was the rudest, snottiest factotum I have interacted with in 20 years of journalism. I am scouring my brain trying to think of someone nastier. Can't.

I think it would be interesting to explore my thoughts and feelings about Waters, about her cooking philosophy, and about Slow Food (with which she is deeply involved), by working my way through her oeuvre. My longstanding grudge would add a crackling note of personal tension to the narrative.

At the end of August, Slow Food is holding a big happening in the Bay Area, so maybe I could work that in as well provided I got tickets NOW. 


Meanwhile, I sorely miss my daily cooking life. It's a little tiresome, going out every night. No, I'm not being sarcastic. I feel I'm on this exhausting forced march to try as many restaurants as I can before the window of opportunity once again slams shut. 

Honestly, I won't be all that sorry when it does.


  1. I vote yes on the alice waters plan! though after that i was thinking you should find an iraqi cuisine cookbook. meanwhile, in one of your 400 baking books, have you ever come across a good recipes for poppyseed cake with cream cheese icing? Apparently Just Desserts doesn't make them anymore.

  2. Not sure that taking on Saint Alice is a good idea though it could be great fun. The whole worship thing is a bit tiresome, worthy of examination, but it's not easy to challenge community religion...

    As to a more difficult interview process, I do recall something about Starbucks??

    On another topic, I think Checka's refrigerator is a delight to the eye, waiting to be filled with fresh food for each meal! Definitely relaxing and a model for all!

  3. Hey, your readers miss your postings. Where are you and when will we hear from you again?

    A FAN

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