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Chinos' Vegetable Stand

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I was reading "It Must've Been Sometihing I Ate" on a plane gong to San Diego last month. The piece on Chinos' inspired me to volunteer to cook dinner for the folks I was staying with. Fortunatly my friends live about 10 minutes from the farm, which they had never been to.

I went with no idea what I was going after. First thing I saw were the most beautiful pumpkins so the first course of pumpkin soup became apparent. While I was off picking one out, my friend got blabby with Kay and told her I was a chef visiting from Oregon. We chatted a while - everyone there was most gracious and the produce stunning. I finished shopping, filling 2 bags and asked how much I owed. Kay wouldn't take a dime - She gave us the bags with a wish for a wonderful meal! Certainly an unexpected treat.

I know my friends will be back and I only wish they had a farm in Oregon. Thanks for writing about them.

Mary Kay

PS- I enjoyed the rest of the book as well!

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Dear Mary Kay,

Thank God you read the rest of the book!

The Chinos are wonderful people, but sometimes careless towards strangers, as we all sometimes are. They love chefs who can appreciate what they're doing, but I assume that either you or your friend was also extremely charming. Or did you mention my book? They're very loyal.

I spent Thanksgiving with them, and besides cooking twelve or fifteen wonderful vegetables dishes to go with the turkey and goose (they'll eat only vegetables they've picked that morning, so we got to take home the leftovers) , Hideo's wife Sherry's son by an earlier marriage, a young doctor, brought flu shots for us all.

I just ate nearly a whole jar of Kay's boysenberry jam.



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I love the Chino's! When I worked for Wolfgang (Puck), my friend was working at Chinois. We told him we were going down for a visit. He said, "take the van and get whatever you want". Who would turn that down!? When we arrived, they told us to go have lunch- they had waited for us so they could cut the corn. I worship people like the Chino's. Their produce is amazing. I tell everyone to go there.

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