Culinary Community

Oct 2016
Drinking Well: The Trident

After so many years working in the culinary business, I cannot say how much I relish the incredibly broad, diverse, fascinating, inspiring group of colleagues I've had the pleasure to interact with over the years. And it is so very satisfying to cheer them in their accomplishments and milestones, tip a glass in their direction when they get some well-deserved recognition. Such is the case this week when the Friday Seattle Times included a tribute to Robert Hess and one ...

Apr 2015
IACP Take-Homes: Conference Reflections

For over two decades, about this time each year I've packed up for a trip to some North American city for a conference that has been a big part of my career path since the days when I was still trying to figure out where that path might lead me. I happen to work in the world of food, maybe you're in real estate or telecommunications or marketing. Most disciplines have similar annual gatherings for professionals that I ...

Aug 2014
Feasting on Portland

It's one of those photo-ops-missed that I've thought about more than a few times in the past year -- arriving in Portland on a Sunday afternoon, looking down on the sidewalk and seeing a "Feast Portland" wristband that clearly had gotten a lot of good use over the previous few days. That trip, obligations had colluded to keep me from attending the event itself, but I whipped down to Portland to ...

Feb 2014
Finding that Career Path in Food

Long, long ago,  just a couple of years after having earned my degree in Mathematics from University of Puget Sound, I sat at the desk in my one-room apartment in Seattle and flipped a coin. I was filling out the application for a stagiaire position at the venerable La Varenne cooking school in France, a more affordable work-study opportunity to study in France, which would have been impossible at full fare. There ...

Oct 2013
Craftsy Give-Away

It's funny those times when two otherwise disparate parts of our lives overlap a bit. Such is the case with Craftsy. I can't recall how I was very first introduced to the site, but got an email this past week that noted I'd been a member for a year. The context for me was knitting, this platform a very cool, dynamic, multi-layered place to learn about, and fuel your love of, a wide range of crafty endeavors. I never signed up ...

Oct 2013
Anne Willan in Seattle

It is going to be such an honor to have Anne Willan here in Seattle for a couple days later this month. I love my hometown and am always thrilled at the chance to share it with friends and colleagues when they visit. This occasion will be an even richer one given that Anne has a large part to play in that path I eventually navigated leading to this career in food writing. I left Seattle back in 1989 thinking ...

Sep 2013
Culinary Conversation on San Juan Island

It's funny, much as I usually abhor ruts and routine, I can be quite the creature of habit sometimes. Which, in the case of visiting the San Juan Islands in the Northwest corner of Washington state, comes in the form of me heading 99.9% of the time to Orcas, dating back to trips made there with my family as far back as I can remember. Which is one of many reasons why I'm so looking ...

Sep 2012

One of my mother's favorite quotes came from none other than Michelangelo -- the translation I remember seeing in clipping-form on her refrigerator cited it as "...and still I am learning." It's a quote I think about often. In this back-to-school week I'm personally thankful to not be starting high school for the first time again. There's some learning I'm more than happy to count in my past. But how boring would life be if everything we knew today constituted ...

Jun 2011
Austin Impressions: The Community of Food

It's a rather odd phenomenon that occurs when involved in a conference as intensive and engaging as that of the  International Association of Culinary Professionals, which just wrapped up this weekend in Austin. The days are long, from that first sip of coffee each morning, chatting with tablemates before heading to the day's first session, to the inevitable last glass of wine/martini/beer before calling it a night after a full and ...