Years ago when I lived in Northern California, and when my husband took me to San Francisco we splurged a few times and went to Square One. I was fascinated by the Mediterranean food there, and the woman who created this food, Joyce Goldstein. I bought her two cookbooks, at that time. Her recipe for grilled leg of lamb was a celebratory meal for years. Her salads were the best long before this current rash of raw vegetable salads took hold.
I once wrote her a letter talking about how much I loved her cookbook and asking her about weight and food, and if eating Mediterranean was helpful with weight. Something like that anyway. This was years and years before the Paleo movement. I did not hear from her. As an aside I add here that Martha Stewart was the only other cookbook author who did not respond to letters.
When my youngest daughter, Meredith, graduated from Berkeley we went to Square One for a family celebratory dinner. The girls had never been to the restaurant and had been eating cooking from the cookbooks. It was a splendid evening. I went to the restroom after dinner and coming out, I met Ms. Goldstein in the hall. We said hello, and I said how much I loved her restaurant and then I stammered out. “I once wrote to you, but you never answered.” She said, “oh wait a minute, did you write to me about women and their weight and the Mediterranean diet?” I said, “Yes” . She said, “ Well last month the office was painted, and they pulled out my desk to paint, and there behind it on the floor was your letter. I have been meaning to answer it. Come into my office.”
That happened about twenty or more years ago, and more than that I do not remember. If it happened yesterday I likely would not remember more as I was so stunned by this.
In any case, she is still a great cookbook author. More on that soon.