I went to the Slow Food Nation Taste Pavilion event
last Sunday with Sukhjit and Igor.
Signing books under the glaring lights of 60 Minutes cameras was Alice Waters
Something unexpected happened. I became completely star-struck. I've met my share of noteable people over the years and usually don't get terribly wierd. But not since I met Michael Stipe
at the 40 Watt Club
years ago have I felt this. (When I spoke with Stipe I found his voice so disarming I had to set my water glass down to keep from spilling it--but I was so much younger then).
Maybe it was the 60 Minutes boom over my head, maybe it's that hers is just the sort of approach to food that I would like to help to spread with Cooking Capsules. I don't generally claim to know who's who in the industry, but I deeply admire her commitment to connecting people with the source of their food. (I'd love to see a Slow Food channel on Cooking Capsules in the future or even just a partnership where we make some of Alice Waters' recipes and link to her projects to spread the word.)
So I said something like: "I ummm..like what you uhhh...are doing..."
(Shit. If that lands on 60 Minutes I will crawl under a rock. I actually waited for a window when they had gone away, but they came back just in time to catch the silliness.)
I did manage to tell her very briefly about Cooking Capsules and hand her a card with the url on it. I asked her if she would take a look at it. She humored me with a smile and a nod. How awkward for her to be under such a spotlight in front of cameras and then have idiots like me standing there lamely trying to tell her about their company.
Oh, well! I got the opportunity to meet her and I now have her lovely book, "The Art of Simple Food"
. Meeting her has inspired me to learn more about her projects and the philosophies of Slow Food. Perhaps the next time I meet her it will be under better circumstances.
Sukhjit admitted to being star-struck too, but surely she formed words that formed reasonable sentences. She's used to having cameras in her face and a boom over her head. ;-)
I have to say- while I enjoyed the Slow Food event- standing in mile long lines for every tasting with very few places to sit, didn't seem in keeping with the philosophy somehow. I guess this is their biggest event yet and is still experimental. Every taste I had of everything was good though.
One moment that made me laugh was when I got a small cup of organic coffee and asked if they had any cream or milk. The woman informed me they didn't have any "additives" available.
One of the best things besides some tasty marinated squid I tried was some brick fired pizza from Chez Panisse
(Igor and I actually talked with the chef who assembled the oven brick by brick for the event) and a very lovely, fresh-as-a-summer-day pluot sorbet from Gelateria Naia
. I can almost taste it now.
Labels: Alice Waters, cooking capsules, Slow Food Nation