Coming to My Senses

  • by Alice Waters
  • Narrated by Alice Waters
  • 8 hrs and 59 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

The long-awaited memoir from cultural icon and culinary standard bearer Alice Waters recalls the circuitous road and tumultuous times leading to the opening of what is arguably America's most influential restaurant.
When Alice Waters opened the doors of her "little French restaurant" in Berkeley, California, in 1971 at the age of 27, no one ever anticipated the indelible mark it would leave on the culinary landscape - Alice least of all. Fueled in equal parts by naiveté and a relentless pursuit of beauty and pure flavor, she turned her passion project into an iconic institution that redefined American cuisine for generations of chefs and food lovers.
In Coming to My Senses, Alice retraces the events that led her to 1517 Shattuck Avenue and the tumultuous times that emboldened her to find her own voice as a cook when the prevailing food culture was embracing convenience and uniformity. Moving from a repressive suburban upbringing to Berkeley in 1964 at the height of the free speech movement and campus unrest, she was drawn into a bohemian circle of charismatic figures whose views on design, politics, film, and food would ultimately inform the unique culture on which Chez Panisse was founded.
Dotted with stories, recipes, and letters, Coming to My Senses is at once deeply personal and modestly understated, a quietly revealing look at one woman's evolution from a rebellious yet impressionable follower to a respected activist who effects social and political change on a global level through the common bond of food.


What the Critics Say

"[Waters] does an artful job of showing how even the most apparently unrelated experiences helped lead her to her profession. She is also quite frank about her failures; her relationships with lovers, friends, and colleagues; and her pride in remaining a part of the 1960's counterculture that nourished her. An almost charmed restaurant life that exhales the sweet aromas of honesty and self-awareness." (Kirkus Reviews)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Authors should NOT narrate their own books!

The WORST narration ever.... it was painful. I had to listen on 1.5 speed to even make it tolerable. Editing in this book is bad too. Lots of redundancy.
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- Denise Stanford

Pretentious and disappointing

As a native of Berkeley, being born in 1965 and being a trained professional within the food service industry who has had the pleasure of working with Deborah Madison and Odessa Piper I thought I would enjoy this listen. I could not have been more wrong. Alice Waters’ breathy voice was annoying to listen to. As she tells her story, she comes across as extremely pretentious and unlike able. Many times while listening I felt that if I stuck a dull pencil in my eye it would have been less painful than listening to Ms. Waters read her own book. I could only listen to it in short spans and plan to return it because it was so disappointing. A very, very disappointing listen.
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- Amy

Book Details

  • Release Date: 09-05-2017
  • Publisher: Random House Audio