Billie Breslin has traveled far from her home in California to take a job at Delicious!, New York’s most iconic food magazine. Away from her family, particularly her older sister, Genie, Billie feels like a fish out of water—until she is welcomed by the magazine’s colorful staff. She is also seduced by the vibrant downtown food scene, especially by Fontanari’s, the famous Italian food shop where she works on weekends. Then Delicious! is abruptly shut down, but Billie agrees to stay on in the empty office, maintaining the hotline for reader complaints in order to pay her bills.

To Billie’s surprise, the lonely job becomes the portal to a miraculous discovery. In a hidden room in the magazine’s library, Billie finds a cache of letters written during World War II by Lulu Swan, a plucky twelve-year-old, to the legendary chef James Beard... MORE

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The Savory Side of Rhubarb

Slightly Spicy Rhubarb Compote “$15 worth of rhubarb?” I asked the cashier at Fairway. “Really?” “Well,” she replied, “it’s $6.99 a pound.” They had glowed at me, the long, thick ruby red stalks, in the gloom of the store. I’d gathered as many as I could hold. I couldn’t help myself. I kept thinking how delicious rhubarb would be with...

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A Dream of Sushi

One of the great joys of working at Conde Nast was that Sushi Zen was just a block away. And, of course, that I had an expense account and could afford to go there. Although this wonderful restaurant flies beneath the radar, I think it's one of the truly great sushi bars of New York. Once Chef Suzuki gets to...

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My Dinner at Alinea

Any meal that begins with osetra caviar garnished with brioche (foam), egg (custard) and capers and onions (clear aspic) that is served with the suave 2005 Special Club Champagne is fine with me. More than fine. But what makes Alinea such a fabulous experience is the sheer exuberant fun of the place. It's a carnival of food delight that takes...

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