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Pasadena Ups the Culinary Ante With Julia Child's 100th Birthday Celebration

Meryl Streep played Julia Child in "Julie & Julia," which re-popluarlized the American culinary legend (Photo courtesy of Sony Pictures)
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Julia Child is a culinary legend to be sure. Between her revolutionary work with Mastering the Art of French Cooking, her series of television shows on PBS, and her autobiographical account entitled My Life in France, she warmed the hearts and kitchens of America, urging them to break the jello mold and experiment with unique, worldly cooking. The Pasadena-native's popularity rose again recently with the release of the late Nora Ephron's film, Julie & Julia.

This August marks the 100th birthday of the grande dame of the kitchen, and countless cities across the U.S. are marking her centennial with honorary meals. There are 100 restaurants in total partaking in the celebration, and perhaps not-so-surprisingly, Pasadena will host the most of any U.S. city, with a total of eight.

The festival will take place from August 8-15, and the restaurants in Pasadena that will be participating include: a/k/a: an American Bistro, Bistro 45, Cheval Blanc Bistro, POP Champagne and Dessert Bar, The Still Room, Maison Akira, the Royce at the Langham, and Vertical Wine Bistro.

Vertical Wine Bistro and chef Laurent Quenioux will feature dishes from Child's most recognized cookbook, Mastering the Art of French Cooking. The menu will include a tuna nicoise salad, boeuf bourguignon, and mousseline au chocolat. Chef David Féau at the Royce at the Langham will be taking a lead from Julia Child’s Way to Cook, doing dishes like a rustic rabbit stew as well as more modern Californian options that pay homage to our local produce.

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For more information on the festival, visit the event's Facebook page. Bon appétit!