An amazing journey to culinary success | BookishFirst

An amazing journey to culinary success

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This book is the memoir of Erin French, the chef and owner of one of the most sought-after dining destinations in the country, The Lost Kitchen. Erin grew up in rural Freedom, Maine, splitting time between her family's farm in the country and their diner. Erin's cooking journey started when was pressed into service in the diner's kitchen at age 12 by her cool and distant father and quickly started learning some of the lessons of a restaurant - time management, multitasking, responsibility. She didn’t intend to have a career in food service and left Freedom attend to college in Boston to study medicine. She found herself pregnant and unwed at age 19. She returned home to have her baby Jaime. Her journey from there to exclusive and innovative restaurateur is, in turns, hopeful, hopeless, happy, sad, aggravating, heartbreaking, and eventually, amazing and inspiring. There were so many ups and downs in both her life and her career - depression, substance abuse, a terribly contentious divorce and custody battle, building then losing a business - through these trials Erin learned, grew and learned to trust herself and her vision. I don't usually have a lot of interest in memoirs, but I found this one to be captivating. Erin created a really innovative concept with her pop up supper clubs and I loved reading about the foodie details that went into putting them on, and eventually in her restaurant. Her writing, particularly about food, was beautiful and thoughtful. Her passion for life and for food shine through the pages in a way that is really inspiring. Her restaurant, The Lost Kitchen sources ingredients exclusively from local farmers, fishermen and artisans. The reservation list is created by randomly drawing from the thousands of postcards that are sent each year from all over the world. Erin creates the limited menu each night based on the best, freshest ingredients available at the time and how she is inspired to combine them. Her restaurant is truly innovative, a complete original and an utter success. Any foodie would find this memoir fascinating. Than you to Bookish Firsts and Celadon Books for providing me with an ARC in exchange for my honest opinion.