Chow Bella's Gift Guide for the Food Geek
Modernist Cuisine: The Art and Science of Cooking
The bleeding edge of cooking right now is molecular gastronomy and this 40 pound box set of books is the Holy Grail for the geek cook. Molecular gastronomy approaches cooking as the fusion of science in the service of art. Generally speaking, molecular gastronomy seeks to deconstruct the process of cooking and understand, literally at a molecular level, what's going on. Armed with that knowledge they can reconstruct old dishes in novel ways or engineer completely new eating experiences. You like ice cream? How about hot ice cream? That's the promise of molecular gastronomy and this set explores them all with painstaking detail and gorgeous, often surreal photography.
Chef's Choice at Posh Improvisational Cuisine
Molecular gastronomy is neat and all but what happens when your geek friend isn't ready to embark on a 2000 page journey through Modernist Cuisine? Maybe it'll be better if they just eat somewhere that does molecular gastronomy before they or you, buy in. Of course Posh doesn't just do molecular gastronomy techniques but they're one of only a handful of places in the Valley that have worked it into their regular line-up. Plus, they take the "improvisational" part of their name pretty seriously and you can expect surprises throughout their Chef's Choice menu.