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Piccolo: M.F.K. Fisher, Julia Child, and Alice Waters: Celebrating the Pleasures of the Table, by Joan Reardon, Six

April 10, 2017 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

Pleasures of the Table, in Piccolo

For this (sixth) Piccolo we’re reading M.F.K. Fisher, Julia Child, and Alice Waters: Celebrating the Pleasures of the Table, by Joan Reardon, Chapter 7, Required Reading (pp. 239 – 266).

The chapter starts: “Row after row of The Chez Panisse Menu Cookbook in one of Cody’s display windows in September 1982 emphasized the changes that more than a decade had brought about. Reviewing the book in The Nation [September 25, 1982], David Sundelson referred to Chez Panisse as a “new privatism” turned inward rather than outward on public issues and commitments. And he wrote that “the counter culture has become the Counter Culture–the counter at the gourmet butcher, the pastry shop, the charcuterie … . The [Chez Panisse Menu] Cookbook shows how we have changed. ‘Aesthetics’ is the ruling term in its vocabulary; life must be pretty. ‘Understanding,’ ‘philosophy,’ and ‘ideology’ now apply only to the kitchen.” He volleyed the charge that Berkeley has always been serious, “but in a braver time, that He adds that Berkeley has always been serious, “but in a braver time, that seriousness was applied to the Vietnam War and not to an apricot soufflé.”

Our Piccolo is a quick, short, Book Group meeting at a local coffee house on Mondays, noon – 1pm. We’re meeting at Acre Coffee in Montgomery Village, Santa Rosa.

The selections are from light, chatty, gossipy storytelling.

No need to RSVP. Just drop by for a piccolo.


Library Journal about M.F.K. Fisher, Julia Child, and Alice Waters: Celebrating the Pleasures of the Table

Reardon (Oysters, LJ 10/15/84), whose articles have been published in the Los Angeles Times and Christian Science Monitor, serves up a savory biographical repast about three women who revolutioned the culinary arts in America. Breaking the traditional mold of describing food merely in terms of process and presentation, each brought forth unbridled artistic aspects previously unknown to the culinary scene.

The author recounts how M.F.K. Fisher’s culinary writings have reminded readers that food is not only a necessity but an art. She reveals how Julia Child, the grande dame of televised cookery, cultivated a renewed interest in French cuisine and gourmet foods for many Americans and how Alice Waters popularized the traditions of California cookery from her Chez Panisse restaurant in Berkeley, California, with her emphasis on fresh, locally grown, and seasonal ingredients. Reardon discusses mutual friendships and parallels in the lives of these three women. She emphasizes that, with roots in California and strong influences from France, each has instilled a new artistic spirit in American cookery. Recommended for general readers.
Michael A. Lutes, Univ. of Notre Dame Lib., Ind.

Bibliographic Description of Celebrating the Pleasures of the Table

Author Reardon, Joan, 1930-
Title M.F.K. Fisher, Julia Child, and Alice Waters : celebrating the pleasures of the table / Joan Reardon.
Imprint New York : Harmony Books, c1994.
Edition 1st ed.

Descript xvi, 302 p. : ill., maps ; 25 cm.
Contents James Beard — Simone (Simca) Beck — Elizabeth David — Lindsey Shere — Julia Child.
Note Includes bibliographical references (p. 293-297) and index.
Subject Fisher, M. F. K. (Mary Frances Kennedy), 1908-1992.
Child, Julia.
Waters, Alice.
Cooks — United States — Biography.
Food writers — United States — Biography.
Alt Title MFK Fisher, Julia Child, and Alice Waters.
Celebrating the pleasures of the table.
LC CARD # 94008650
ISBN 0517577488


April 10, 2017
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm
Event Category:


Slow Food Russian River Book Group


Acre Coffee @ Montgomery Village Shopping Center
Montgomery Village Shopping Center, 2365 Midway Drive
Santa Rosa, CA 95405 United States
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