-by Nathan Fong (Vancouver BC, Sunday, August 15, 2004)
Julia Child... I did meet her several times. The last time she was in Vancouver was 1991 for the IACP conference that was held here. She loved Vancouver and its beauty and the food...we were in a period of great transition for food at the time. She dined at Bishop’s and the old Raincoast (was that the one?), Janice Lotzkar’s west coast restaurant where Rebecca Dawson was chef then.
Julia did a whole seminar on baking French Bread here...and the place was packed to the rafters.
I met her several times since then and the greatest honor was when she presented me my IACP Award in Portland in 1998. she sometimes remembered my name but always knew I lived in that beautiful city Vancouver!
She had a wicked sense of humour and was always seen up late entertaining friends at tht bar during the conerences...My best memory of Julia was in 1995 when we were in Paris at a conference when she attended a tour of their famous Rungis Market at 4am...
[Sooke Harbour House’s] Sinclair Philip was with us...It was in cold Novermber...we were in the commissary where we were warmed up with French Onion Soup and had a choice of red wine or a latte...you can imagine what she had...In the French Fruit and Vegetable terminal, some delegates from the Mid West asked me what some tubers were. I told them that they were Jerusalem artichokes and they made a great puree and potato substitute...Julia speaks up and says that she loved them but they gave everyone gas...without missing a beat she said...perhaps they should rename them “Fartichokes!”
I will miss her humour, passion and her sense of always wanting to learn more!