Alice Louise Waters was born on April 28, 1944, the second daughter of Margaret and Charles Waters of Chatham, New Jersey. She attended the University of California, Berkeley, at the height of the Free Speech Movement. In January 1965, Waters and a friend, Sarah Flanders, went to study in Paris and discovered the delicious variety and low price of French restaurant meals. Alice Waters was changed forever.

The friends traveled around the Mediterranean and found food that was locally grown, gloriously fresh, boldly seasoned, and deliciously prepared, without the fuss of French grande cuisine. Waters returned to Berkeley in 1966, determined to open a cafe that served the food they had eaten abroad. After graduation, Waters worked as a waitress and wrote a food column. She ...

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