Alison's awesome family kitchen is perfect for entertaining and keeping family meals running smoothly. I love the bright colors, the spacious countertops, the tiles and wood—all of which help create a warm yet modern, fully functional yet sophisticated family-style kitchen.
10 Questions for Alison (and Her Kitchen)
1. What inspires your kitchen and your cooking?
Italy will always be my main source of food inspiration. I was married in Italy and I have spent quite a few wonderful vacations there, basically eating and drinking my way across the country. I love the regional aspects of their food, the way a recipe can alter fundamentally within just a few miles due to the ingredients of the area. I have also been inspired by the Slow Food movement for years, and love the way that its spirit is finding its own voice here in the States with our farmers markets and Eat Local mentality.
2. What is your favorite kitchen tool or element?
For practicality, tongs. For luxury, my expensive white enamel Japanese teapot from Tortoise. Perfect hot water. And for expediency, the microwave. Yes, I said it. Nothing makes my life better than Trader Joe's frozen mac n'cheese served quickly to my hungry kids at the end of a long day.
3. What's the most memorable meal you've ever cooked in this kitchen?
Green beans that my girls kept stealing off my plate. I attribute it solely to butter.
4. The biggest challenge for cooking in your kitchen:
The floors. They have a dark brown stain and are impossible to keep clean. So annoying. And the fact that the smoke alarm goes off at the drop of a hat. Who knew roasting asparagus could be so dangerous? Plus I need some really sharp knives. They dull quickly. Otherwise - I love this kitchen.
5. Is there anything you wish you had done differently?
I wish there was a pantry. I love that we have an open plan kitchen, but a pantry would be just lovely.
6. What was your biggest indulgence or splurge in the kitchen?
Groceries, every week.
7. Is there anything you hope to add or improve in your kitchen?
I could use a new espresso machine. My trusty Nespresso is nearing the end of its long and well-loved life.
8. How would you describe your cooking style?
Immediate, ingredient-based, functional and tasty.
9. Best cooking advice or tip you ever received?
Don't be afraid of butter and salt. Use and enjoy.
10. What are you cooking this week?
Kale and Swiss chard with garlic and butter. Steak with truffle salt and pepper. Strange smoothies incorporating greens. One can always use more vegetables in one's diet. And always, always, pair with a delightful wine. Food is just better with wine. And friends.
Resources of Note:
• Fridge + Dishwasher: Frigidaire
• Lighting: West Elm above the island; Jayson Home above the dining table
• Dining Table: Custom zinc table from Tumbleweed & Dandelion on Abbot Kinney; Chairs: 2 kids chairs, Stokke, red Marais chairs DWR
• Stools: Vintage from the Rose Bowl.
We're always looking for real kitchens from real cooks.
Show us your kitchen here!
Related: Shauna's French-Inspired Renovation
(Images: Bethany Nauert)