THE SHORT OF IT: I am a freelance journalist, cookbook author, and recipe developer. After a year of baking at a French bakery in Oakland and another handful of years cooking on the line in restaurants across the country, I started writing about food and restaurants. My first book, A16 Food and Wine, based on one of the restaurants I worked in, received the IACP Cookbook of the Year award and the Julia Child First Book award. Since then, I have co-authored or edited more than eight books on food and wine, including Champagne, the winner of the 2018 IACP Wine and Spirits Book Award and the 2017 André Simon Drink Book Award. My next book, Lavash, with fellow Armenian food enthusiasts John Lee and Ara Zada, is due out fall 2019 with Chronicle Books.
MORE BACKGROUND: While I live in San Francisco, I've also called Napa, Boston, Exeter (England), Davao (the Philippines), Oakland, and Chicago—my favorite second city—home. After graduating from UCDavis, I went to culinary school in the Napa Valley. I then spent the next several years cooking on the line in Boston, Napa, and San Francisco before attending Northwestern's Medill School of Journalism to get my spelling back on track. (There are a lot of ways to misspell cauliflower, and I saw and used them all while working in restaurants.) My writing has appeared in publications ranging from Smithsonianmag.com, to CNN's Explore Parts Unknown, Gluten Free Forever and Eating Well. I've also been the recipient of a fellowship from the Symposium for Professional Wine Writers at Meadowood. In addition to editorial work, I develop recipes for clients and teach cooking classes at San Francisco Cooking School.
DEEP DIVE: I'm a former college lacrosse player. My most crushing sports memory is losing to Stanford in the Final Four my senior year. (So much for "defense wins championships." I played defense.) More recently, I've become an unintentional San Francisco Bay Area sports fan, which partially stems from watching my brother and cousins trying to replicate “The Catch” when we were kids.
I am, and probably always will be, a sucker for any great underdog story.
Heard: The Splendid Table
Heard: The Food Seen
Quoted: The Wall Street Journal
Quoted: Bon Appetit Healthyish
In Writing: Food52.com
In Action: Saveur