A CHEF'S WORLD/DOMINIQUE CRENN

What I'm Watching
 Photo Credit: Netflix

Photo Credit: Netflix

 

One afternoon, I binged watch the entire first season of Chef’s Table, the critically acclaimed Netflix show created by filmmaker David Gelb, director of “Jiro Dreams of Sushi.” I was transfixed by the chefs, their stories, and the pace that Mr. Gelb set. I couldn’t move, just sat, savoring every bit of it.

Then, it was onto the second season, which to my surprise, I couldn’t finish.

I was stuck on an episode. I found myself replaying it over and over again. Marveling at the woman on the screen. I knew her. I’d met her several times in my lifetime, most recently back in October. I knew her.

Her name is Dominique Crenn. She is a French chef, and the only female chef in the United States to gain two Michelin stars for her sleek modernist restaurant Atelier Crenn, which was named after her late father, who influenced her to be “artistic in any way she wanted.” When she was nine, he took her to a Michelin star restaurant, and she spoke of how fascinated she was by the environment. She fell in love with it and decided that she wanted to be a chef.

It’s a treat to see and hear Ms. Crenn talk. I felt like I was there, in the room with her. I smelled the aroma of her cooking through the screen and felt inspired when she described her art. When she said that her restaurant was “a place where you gather people to create with you,” I instantly felt the need to sit down and capture my own art on paper. Even her menu is in the form of a poem? Like, really?

Ms. Crenn reminds me of another remarkable woman I met in October, Christina, owner of Elastic Wax Center, and one of the reasons I decided to publish my blog (which I’d been sitting on for a few months). Like a creep, I even took a video of her while she was telling me to follow my heart when it comes to my dreams. I can’t wait to write about her -- maybe interview her the next time I see her. She spoke with such passion, that I called Guru as soon as I left her practice.

I’ve only met a few people who are able to move you to action with their words. They bring out the creative side in you. They make you want to be better than you ever thought you could be. To eat better, live cleaner, meditate often, speak softer, love deeper, laugh more. They inspire you. Luckily for me, my best friend, Guru, is one of those people.

In this episode, Ms. Crenn took us back to France, where it all began. She visited her mother and reminisced about the past. She showed us her room, her parents' room, and where her father is buried.

“This journey has helped me to reflect on what matters and what doesn’t matter." Ms. Crenn said about the the path that led her to where she is right now . And it made me appreciate all that I have. My family, my friends, my dog, my passions.

I’ve never had the urge to visit California (I might be the only person in the world!) but I wouldn’t mind venturing West for the experience that Dominique Crenn has to offer. If only for a day.