Tuesday, January 22, 2008

The last straw

I think the first twinge of dislike I felt for Alice Waters came when she talked about the food she brings up to Chez Panisse from Southern California:

An old friend living in southern California happened upon the Chino family farm produce stand in Rancho Santa Fe near San Diego, and immediately air-freighted us the most beautiful and flavorful tiny green beans any of us had ever seen outside France. Ever since, we have bought all the Chino family produce we can.

from Chez Panisse Vegetables, published 1996

Even in 1996, it seemed a little too much to be bringing vegetables up all that way, especially to a kitchen that touted the value of just-picked, fresher than fresh food.

Then I read, elsewhere in her book, that dried basil has no place in her kitchen. For some reason, this got my back up. Yeah, fresh basil is wonderful, but dried basil is a whole different thing, to be used in a different way, and totally has a right to exist. I can only freeze so much pesto.

And now this.

I've spent a fair amount of time looking into the Ameya development. (If you don't follow the link, Ameya is a luxury development going into pristine Montana land that has many local residents up in arms.) It's hard to see how she could ally herself with this. It seems to be the opposite of everything she stands for.

Plus when I look at the photo that accompanies the article, I have to wonder -- when did she go from Green Goddess to Beautiful Person? What's with the glam shot? Where did her cute French countryside look go?

The whole thing makes me sad.


Post a Comment

<< Home