Meet the chef behind the California culinary revolution

Throughout his career, chef Jeremiah Tower has accomplished much with elegance and charm. Known as the creative force behind the California culinary revolution, Tower famously worked as chef de cuisine at Chez Panisse in Berkeley, California in the 1970s. Then, in San Francisco in the 80s, he opened Stars restaurant, a critically-acclaimed “see and be seen” hotspot.

Although he lived quietly for many years after Stars closed, Tower was catapulted back into the spotlight suddenly in 2016 after being the focus of Anthony Bourdain’s recent Netflix documentary, The Last Magnificent.

Last week, the famous chef published his tenth book, Flavors of Taste: Recipes, Memories and Menus. I caught up with him in Hawaii for events related to the eighth annual Hawaii Food and Wine Festival, where he – along with several other notable Oahu-based chefs, including Roy Yamaguchi, Alan Wong and George Mavrothalassitis – created an exclusive multi-course dinner to about 100 guests. We talked about his upcoming book, his life in Mexico and his experience making a documentary.