juliachild.jpg The news is spreading over the wires: America's beloved French Chef, that giantess of the kitchen, Julia Child, has passed away.

Gothamist, like many others, cut its culinary teeth on Julia's famous two-volume magnum opus, Mastering the Art of French Cooking. This masterwork laid bare the subtleties and secrets of French cuisine for an American audience, and managed to launch one of the first great food bloggers to superstardom. Julia's decades-long television career took the mystery out of good cooking for generations of home chefs. When Gothamist was in law school, it was Julia's influence that led us to Savenor's, the only decent gourmet market in Boston.

We're going to miss Julia, with her devil-may-care attitude toward butter, her playful repartee with intimidated guest chefs, and her remarkable, unmistakable, widely-imitated but ultimately inimitable voice.

As Julia said in the introduction to The Way to Cook, "Dining with one's friends and beloved family is certainly one of life's primal and most innocent delights, one that is both soul-satisfying and eternal." "In spite of food fads, fitness programs, and health concerns, we must never lose sight of a beautifully conceived meal." So, tonight, raise a glass of Bordeaux to her memory, sit down with a group of your friends over a well-prepared home-cooked meal, and start poring through her cookbooks in search of ways to keep her spirit alive and well in the kitchen. Bon appetit, Julia, and thank you.

Gothamist on the Julie/Julia Project.
Read about Julia's life in her biography, A Taste for Life.