Oh, Tyler

As part of my week-long vacation in California last week I bargained with the Other Eater in my Household to drive a wee bit out of the way to visit Tyler Florence’s kitchen goods store in Mill Valley.

It was soooooo worth it.

The store, to begin with, is a mix of Williams-Sonoma (high end, pretty and also useful cooking tools) and Chef’s Catalog (useful things that you keep hidden in a  cabinet) and a flea market – there was a whole table of old pitchers and serving sets and the like right inside the door.  The back of the store has a small kitchen, likely used for demonstration classes, and then a small library with all sorts of cool cookbooks, including a whole section dedicated to Tyler’s Food Network Colleagues. And on the day I was there, Tyler was using the kitchen to make chicken and dumplings.

Tyler, chicken and dumplings

(That’s the Other Eater  on the left in the gray fleece jacket, sniffing Tyler’s chicken. Tyler is in gray in the center, well-lit)

In my star-struck shame, I sort of made friends with the saleslady, JoJo, a Naperville native, who told me that I was welcome to stay and watch the filming while I shopped and oh-by-the-way-if-you-buy-a-book-Tyler-will-sign-it-did-I-mention-he-has-two-new-ones-that-just-came-out-they’re-right-here. They were filming a segment for Macy’s (JoJo said the Food Network shows are still done in New York).

I made my way toward the stack of books and was flipping pages, trying to decide which book I wanted for my small collection of books signed by the author, when I paused on a black and white photo of a woman I recognized because she was STANDING RIGHT BEHIND ME STRAIGHTENING MERCHANDISE. Tyler’s wife, Tolin, seemed pleasant enough in the store.  She looked good in print, too.

So, I paid for my stuff and left my book behind to be signed.  Ho-hum.

We returned two days later to pickup the book and by the time I got in the car to go home I was apoplectic. He didn’t sign his name!

The note


And for the record, the chicken and dumplings recipe isn’t in the book, either.