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Crenn, Dominique

Rebel Chef: In Search of What Matters

Rebel Chef: In Search of What Matters

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From the publisher

By the time Dominique Crenn decided to become a chef, at the age of twenty-one, she knew it was a near impossible dream in France where almost all restaurant kitchens were run by men. So, she left her home and everything she knew to move to San Francisco, where she would train under the legendary Jeremiah Tower. Almost thirty years later, Crenn was awarded three Michelin Stars in 2018 for her influential restaurant Atelier Crenn, and became the first female chef in the United States to receive this honor - no small feat for someone who hadn't gone to culinary school or been formally trained.

In Rebel Chef, Crenn tells of her untraditional coming-of-age as a chef, beginning with her childhood in Versailles where she was emboldened by her parents to be curious and independent. But there is another reason Crenn has always felt free to pursue her own unconventional course. Adopted as a toddler, she didn't resemble her parents or even look traditionally French. Growing up she often felt like an outsider, and was haunted by a past she knew nothing about. But after years of working to fill this blank space, Crenn has embraced the power her history gives her to be whoever she wants to be.

Here is a disarmingly honest and revealing look at one woman's evolution from a daring young chef to a respected activist. Reflecting on the years she spent working in the male-centric world of professional kitchens, Crenn tracks her career from struggling cook to running one of the world's most acclaimed restaurants, while at the same time speaking out on restaurant culture, sexism, immigration, and climate change. At once a tale of personal discovery and a tribute to unrelenting determination, Rebel Chef is the story of one woman making a place for herself in the kitchen, and in the world.

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From Chef Scott

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This is a compelling and deeply personal memoir that offers an inspiring glimpse into the life and journey of a culinary trailblazer. This book is more than just a chronicle of a chef’s rise to fame; it's an intimate exploration of passion, identity, and the relentless pursuit of excellence in the demanding world of professional cooking.

The memoir takes the reader on a captivating journey through the author's life, starting from her humble beginnings and moving through the various stages of her culinary career. The narrative is engaging and heartfelt, providing an honest and often raw look at the challenges and triumphs faced along the way. Crenn's story is one of determination, resilience, and the unyielding desire to forge a unique path in the culinary world.

One of the most striking aspects of "Rebel Chef" is its candid portrayal of the restaurant industry. The book does not shy away from discussing the intense pressures, high stakes, and the often cutthroat nature of professional kitchens. This honesty adds a layer of depth and authenticity to the memoir, making it a valuable read for anyone interested in the realities of a culinary career.

The author's reflections on her personal and professional growth are particularly poignant. Throughout the book, she grapples with questions of identity, creativity, and what it means to be a chef. These introspections are not only relatable but also offer valuable insights into the mind and heart of a culinary artist.

"Rebel Chef" also shines a light on the importance of mentorship, collaboration, and community in the culinary world. The author pays homage to the individuals who influenced and guided her journey, highlighting the significance of relationships in shaping a chef’s career and philosophy.

The writing style is compelling and fluid, making the book a page-turner. The narrative is interspersed with vivid descriptions of dishes, kitchens, and food scenes, bringing the story to life and engaging the reader’s senses. The author’s passion for food and cooking permeates every page, making the memoir a celebration of culinary art.

This book is not just for those interested in cooking or food; it's for anyone who appreciates a powerful story of perseverance, self-discovery, and the pursuit of one's passions against all odds.