Berkeley Chef Samin Nosrat Stars in TV Show

She got her professional start at Chez Panisse.


Image via Pixabay

Berkeley resident, renowned chef, and New York Times food writer Samin Nosrat stars in a new Netflix adaptation of her bestselling, James Beard Award-winning cookbook.

Both the book and the show — which debuts this week — bear the same title: Salt Fat Acid Heat.

While studying English as a UC Berkeley undergrad during the late 1990s, Nosrat began busing tables at Chez Panisse — where she later learned to cook. On her website, she credits that restaurant's founder Alice Waters as a life-changing mentor. 

The San Diego-bred child of Iranian immigrants, Nosrat also worked at the now-defunct Berkeley restaurant Eccolo and at restaurants in Italy.

These days she is a popular teacher and lecturer at Yale University, the Oakland Unified School District, St. Mary's College, and many other venues.

Interviewed in Berkeley's Gourmet Ghetto by a reporter from the UK's Guardian newspaper, Nosrat explained that the Netflix show's director told her:

"We want this show because of you, because you’re this lovable, imperfect person who wears Birkenstocks and overalls, who lives in a messy house, whose kitchen isn’t always clean."

Each episode of the four-part series finds Nosrat interacting with local foods in a different part of the world: Japan for the "Salt" section, Mexico for "Acid," Italy for "Fat," and California for "Heat."

Her own mother appears in the "Heat" episode, demonstrating how to make Persian crispy rice. 

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