Christine Muhlke of the New York Times had this interesting bit in an article last August:
"I recalled the line a French chef once used following a salad by Alice Waters, the great pioneer of using local organic produce: That's not cooking. That's shopping."
I think this explains exactly how I feel about Zuni, Chez Panisse, and Oliveto.
When people ask for recommendations, and places like Zuni & etc. are suggested, to be fair, we should point out this philosophy.
P.S. One of my favorite salads (shaved fennel bulb and mushrooms with EVOO, salt, pepper, and parmesan cheese) is a Waters creation. But I feel much better making it myself than I would paying for it in a restaurant.
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