The first cookbook I ever used (but not the first I ever owned) was written by Patricia Wells. I still own this sauce-stained copy of Trattoria and remember our first collaboration: penne all’Arrabiata, cooked for a boy during my senior year of college. Because it turned out well (the pasta, not the affair), Patricia Wells became my hero.
That affection was compounded when I later moved to Paris and began abusing a borrowed copy (thanks, Jennifer) of The Food Lover’s Guide to Paris. I relied on Wells’ website for dining recommendations and flipped furtively under restaurant tables through her French/English food glossary.
More recently, when I learned that Patricia Wells had started blogging, I went out on a (very long) limb and invited her to be part of Paris by Mouth. I didn’t actually expect her to respond to me, a girl who was devoted to SpaghettiOs during the same period that Wells was serving as the first (and only) American food critic to a major French publication.
But she said yes.
Patricia Wells is now the 12th (and final) Contributing Editor to Paris by Mouth. I think I’m going to celebrate tonight by making something delicious from Trattoria and by drinking something strong (I’m still in shock).