California-style pizza at the Chez Panisse restaurant in Berkeley
California cuisine is a food movement that originated in California. The cuisine focuses on dishes that are driven by local and sustainable ingredients with an attention to seasonality and an emphasis on the bounty of the region.
One of the first proponents of using fresh, locally available foods was Helen Evans Brown, who became friends with James Beard after publishing Helen Brown's West Coast Cookbook in 1952. She advocated using fruits and spices available in one’s own neighborhood, forgoing poor grocery store substitutes, as well as fresh seafood, caught locally. The book received wide acclaim and became the "template" for what is now thought of as California cuisine.Alice Waters, who opened Chez Panisse restaurant in 1971 in Berkeley, California, has contributed significantly to the concept of California Cuisine.
About the same time, in Yountville in the Napa Valley, Sally Schmitt began serving single-menu monthly dinners that emphasized local ingredients, continuing the concept when she and her husband Don opened The French Laundry in 1978.
^"The birth of California cuisine is generally traced back to Alice Waters in the 1970s and her restaurant Chez Panisse. Waters introduced the idea of using natural, locally grown fresh ingredients to produce her dishes. California cuisine is... local, based like most traditional regional cooking on available ingredients including abundant seafood. Fresh vegetables, lightly cooked, and fresh fruits, berries, and herbs characterize the cuisine generally, but California cooking is also in fact a fusion of cooking from around the world." Benjamin F. Shearer Culture and Customs of the United States Greenwood Publishing Group, 2007 ISBN0-313-33877-9, 440, page 212
^Goldstein, Joyce (2013). Inside the California Food Revolution: Thirty Years that Changed Our culinary Consciousness. Berkeley, Los Angeles, London: University of California Press. pp. 3–5. ISBN978-0-520-26819-7.
^"Food Fight, Revolution Never Tasted So Good!" A Documentary by Chris Taylor, 2008.
^Goldstein, Joyce (2013). Inside the California Food Revolution: Thirty Years that Changed our Culinary Consciousness. Berkeley, Los Angeles, London: University of California Press. pp. 3–5. ISBN978-0-520-26819-7.