The first thing that happens if you walk into Judith Jones's kitchen, umbrella-less and rain-soaked as I was one recent afternoon, is you get a thorough knees-down licking from her Havanese puppy, Mabon. Then Judith offers you a warm kitchen towel from the rung of her Garland stove to dry off. It's an unusual welcome.
For my part, the entrance was anything but graceful. I self-consciously hunched over my rain boots, slipping them off, not taking my gaze off all the details of the room, and toppled over. How could I not? My eyes, like saucers, were busy scanning the French copper pots, peg-boards straight from Julia Child, the apothecary of beans, grains and spices, the industrial stove visibly etched with history.