My love affair with food began as a child (I was deemed "starving stephanie" by my aunties and cousins because of my seemingly endless appetite), but the relationship really blew up when we lived in San Francisco. With a thrice-weekly farmer's market, a generally high standard for anything involving edible consumption, and a food-related work environment (I worked at Williams Sonoma's corporate office and my desk was right across from the test chef!), it was simply unavoidable.
One particular block in the Mission is particularly delicious as it's home to Bi-Rite Creamery + Grocery and Tartine. There is an ever-present line at Tartine, but with good reason...everything there is scrumptious (please know it is worth the wait!). The food is amazing and the bread is better than most boulangeries in France (just read the inspiring introduction and you will understand why). When I recently thumbed through their cookbook, Tartine Bread, I just knew I needed to add it to my repertoire. If anyone is going to make a breadmaker out of me, it's going to be Chad Robertson!
If you're looking for a beautiful cookbook for yourself or for someone else, this is a great find.