First things first. Check out this immaculately baked croissant from Kens Artisan Bakery. Hard and crispy on the outside, puffed up like helium yet--on the inside hollow with airy moist layers. All the reports were right--this with a cup of coffee from Stumptown--could not have been a better treat before heading out of town west to the coast. Cannon beach, bolted by Haystack rock protruding from the ocean was west coast style scale for sure. At Neahkahnie Mountain--on the roadside stop, we came upon a parachute rock jumper poised for a fly--just waiting for the right breeze to carry him aloft. Seeing him was liberating and uplifting.
Last night, at the IACP cookbook awards held at the Portland Art Museum was a special night--hanging with the Artisan crew led by our fearless editor Ann Bramson and the crown king of the fete--Thomas Keller who luckily, as the lone winner amongst the Artisan books lent class, fun and tasteful gratitude to the event. Alas--Mad Hungry lost its award to a book called Family Meals by Maria Helms Sinsky. But Susie Heller, one of Thomas's collaborator on the Ad Hoc book told me that I couldn't have lost to a nicer or lovier person as Maria is a long time friend of hers and fellow Napa resident. No doubt for sure we're connected by the same passion too: Cook for the ones you love. Teach them to cook for themselves. And they will pass it on.