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Coming to My Senses: The Making of a Counterculture Cook Hardcover – September 5, 2017
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"Waters describes these discoveries with the intense specificity we all give our life-changing first encounters in 'Coming to My Senses,' a partial autobiography that ends on the night in 1971 when she opened Chez Panisse . . . The book is a prequel, the story before the story everybody knows."
—Pete Wells, The New York Times
"Ms. Waters is the reason restaurants started naming farms on menus and serving mesclun salads and American-made goat cheese."
—Kim Severson, The New York Times
"One of the architects of California cuisine, Alice Waters reveals her rise to Chez Panisse fame in her latest memoir. Waters has never been shy about telling her story, but this book goes further back than most of her earlier work."
"You'll get lost in [Waters's] palpable passion, all the while learning about her love for rosé, her genius way to make mayo and that time she turned down a dinner with John Lennon."
“[Waters] does an artful job of showing how even the most apparently unrelated experiences helped lead her to her profession. She is also quite frank about her failures; her relationships with lovers, friends, and colleagues; and her pride in remaining a part of the 1960's counterculture that nourished her. An almost charmed restaurant life that exhales the sweet aromas of honesty and self-awareness.”
"After reading this mouthwatering tale of Waters' intrepid youth, you'll be hungry for more..."
“Through Chez Panisse, her decades of writing, advocacy and yes, dreaming, Waters has helped change how Americans eat for the better through the culinary expression of her counterculture convictions.”
"Readers will be charmed by Waters’s adoration of exquisitely prepared food. Her anecdotes and her descriptions of friends and customers (many of whom were filmmakers, artists, and prominent thinkers of the time) bring the era and the restaurant to the mind’s eye in vibrant detail."
Notable Press & Accolades:
New York Times bestseller in Hardcover Nonfiction
Publishers Weekly bestseller in Hardcover Nonfiction
Los Angeles Times bestseller in Hardcover Nonfiction
IndieBound bestseller in Hardcover Nonfiction
Amazon Best of the Year 2017, Top 100
Amazon Best of the Year 2017, Category Picks, Biography & Memoirs
Amazon Best of the Year 2017, Category Picks, Cookbook, Food, & Wine
Amazon Best of the Year 2017, Holiday Gift Picks, True Stories, Well Told
Fall 2017 Most Anticipated Books—Publishers Weekly
Ten Cookbooks for Fall—USA Today
What to Read This Month—Vanity Fair
50 New Books to Read in Fall 2017—PureWow
About the Author
ALICE WATERS is the executive chef, founder, and owner of Chez Panisse Restaurant and Café in Berkely, California. She founded the Edible Schoolyard and has received the French Legion of Honor, WSJ Magazine Humanitarian Innovator Award, and three James Beard Awards. Alice is Vice President of Slow Food International and the author of thirteen books. Her most recent books are My Pantry, The Art of Simple Food II, 40 Years of Chez Panisse, and In the Green Kitchen. She lives in Berkeley, California.
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When I went to France for the first time--just a few years after Alice's first visit--I was stunned by the food. Not in the palaces of gastronomy--we certainly couldn't afford those!--but in the small restaurants and cafes recommended in Frommer's "Europe on $5 a Day," our travel bible. It was one revelation after another--the cafe au lait and croissants or baguette (compared to instant coffee and toasted white bread at home) and the simple, delicious preparations of fresh vegetables. I remember ordering a "carrot salad" in one such place and being served a plate of cold, fresh, shredded carrots dressed with lemon juice, salt, and pepper. How different from iceberg lettuce swimming in bottled dressing at home, and how refreshing! I was enchanted, as Alice was. But she created one of the great American restaurants out of her enchantment. And this is the story of how that happened.