While on vacation in Hawaii I did not indulge in one of my addictions, watching food programs on TV. In fact, I watched very little TV at all on my trip. Vacation is my big chance to catch up on my reading. This time around I brought two books I had received review copies of–Best Food Writing 2007 and Service Included. I was thrilled to see that my friend and Bay Area Bites colleague Shuna Fish Lydon was included in the book. Past Bay Area Bites writers to make the cut include both Catherine Nash and Stephanie Lucianovic. The book seems to be equal parts angst and humor with some thoughtful and sentimental pieces thrown In for good measure. It’s a good vacation read, and provides an interesting snapshot of the food issues and obsessions of the day. Some of my favorite pieces were Cast Iron Skillet by Andrea King Collier, and A Grandchild of Italy Cracks the Spaghetti Code by Kim Severson.

The other book I read Service Included, is really a gem. It gives us the flipside to Bill Buford’s Heat. It’s the story of being a waiter at Per Se in New York. Phoebe Damrosch is a fantastic writer with humor, wit and a great sense of irony. She is brutally honest about just about everything, herself included. Throughout the saga of the opening of Per Se in New York are little tidbits about service and how to be a good diner. The book reads like a guilty pleasure. I have even less desire to be a waiter than to be a chef, but to be a fly on the wall is just plain yummy.

Vacation Reads 2 January,2008Amy Sherman

  • Mansi Desai

    hope you enjoyed your vacation Amy! as for Shuna, i just put myself on her mailing list for her next season of baking classes:)

    wish everyone in the Bay Area a happy, healthy and delicious 2008!:)


Amy Sherman

Amy Sherman began blogging in 2003, because all her
friends and family were constantly asking her where
and what to eat. Three months after it launched,
Forbes chose her blog, Cooking with Amy, as one of the
top five best food blogs, praising her writing as
“smart, cozy and witty”. Since then her blog has been
featured and recipes reprinted in many newspapers and
magazines in the U.S. and the world.

In addition to regularly updating her blog, Amy is a
guest contributor to the blog, and
Contributing Editor of Glam Dish. She also writes
restaurant reviews for SF Station.

Her focus on Bay Area Bites is primarily cookbook
reviews along with some interviews and current events.

Amy is a recipe developer and freelance food writer.
She is author of WinePassport: Portugal and wrote the new introduction to the classic cookbook, Jane Grigson’s Vegetable Book, published by the University of Nebraska Press. She recently completed 45 recipes for a Williams-Sonoma cookbook and wrote her first piece for VIA magazine.

She is currently serving on the board of the San Francisco Professional Food Society and is a member of the International Association of Culinary Professionals. Amy lives in San Francisco with her husband, tech journalist Lee Sherman.

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