Sunday, April 13, 2008

French Laundry at Home: Notes and Notables

Within the first month or so of starting French Laundry at Home, I heard from Shuna Lydon, former pastry sous at The French Laundry. From the get-go, Shuna has been a font of encouragement as well as a great behind-the-scenes supporter of mine, for which I am most grateful. Since that first email, we've stayed in touch pretty regularly, and I enjoy reading her blog: Eggbeater.

There's one recent post in particular I think is worth reading and re-reading: Chef Owners Who Work the Line. It's a story about one of Shuna's experiences at The French Laundry, and it really speaks to character, integrity, ownership (in the true sense of the word), responsibility, and the core of what it means to pursue being the best. For those of you here in the DC area, you'll recognize Eric Ziebold, owner and executive chef at CityZen. But more important than the familiar names in the story are the take-aways that, I think, can be applied to almost any profession or trade. What you read in "Chef Owners Who Work the Line" will very likely mean different things to different people, so I'm going to spare you my own analysis of the story because I want each of you to read it "through your own lens," as they say, and see what it means for you.

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Michael Ruhlman
recently posted a query on his blog, asking what readers thought the next big food trends might be. At last count, there were more than 170 comments/replies, so drink it all in and see what others are thinking.

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To answer all the emails I've been getting in the past week or so: Yes, Thomas Keller has a new book coming out in the fall. No, I haven't seen an advance copy, so I can't tell you what I think about it. But I have a sneaking suspicion it's going to be pretty spectacular.

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Up Next: Saddle of Rabbit in Applewood-Smoked Bacon with Caramelized Fennel and Fennel Oil

Read my Previous Post: Pan-Roasted Striped Bass with Artichoke Ravioli and Barigoule Vinaigrette


Shaw Girl said...

I just found your blog through Smitten Kitchen and love it! I'm in the DC area too and have started a fairly new blog myself, so I have much to learn! And I swear too...a lot.

Anonymous said...

Awwwww maaaaaannnn! I had JUST gotten that song out of my head!!!!!

Anna Banana said...

Looks like the trends people are talking about involve growing your own. Are you ready?

Reebs said...

Thanks for sharing the link to Shuna Lydon's blog. It was a wonderful post.

shuna fish lydon said...

dude. you should see my traffic today. better than when the president is in town.

thanks for the link love yo. zow.

p.s. when you get to the chocolate fondant recipe call me. really. it's a hard one.


Anonymous said...

A new Keller cookbook! Awesome. Hey, perhaps your next project?

Jakeymon said...

Between the comments on Michael Ruhlman's blog and the link to Eggbeater - great roundup!

There's a fair amount of gloom in those comments, though; at least in this part of the world, it doesn't seem like the food culture is about to collapse under the weight of the other stuff that's happening.

At least I hope not!

Anonymous said...

I found your blog because of Shuna's mention of it on her blog, maybe almost a year ago and so glad I did. I like how you play : )

Also, I used to be a waiter at the Bistro Francais in Georgetown where the chef/owner, Gerard, was on the line every day for lunch. The poulet bistro (rotisserie chicken) and the eggs benedict were the big favorites. And I would wake myself up, (um, drooling, haha), dreaming about the vinaigrette I used as a dip for the bread there. Yum.