I didn’t grow up a foodie. I’m not sure I even heard the term until I was in my late 20s. I discovered food organically, the old-fashioned way — by eating! You can read more about my food journey from New Jersey to Pennsylvania to Manhattan and, full circle, back to New Jersey, in the foodwithaview.com story at how I got here. For now, I thought I’d share a little more about the woman behind food with a view.
My life comes down to three main components: my family, my career, and everything else. I sometimes struggle to admit it depending on the audience and circumstances, but they are all equally important to me. I believe we as a society are on a long journey to make that perspective a little more comfortable for everyone, especially women. For now, I’m happy to stand up for everyone juggling a family, work, and some passions of their own, and say that they all deserve equal place in our hearts and minds.
First we’ll talk about my family. My husband Gary and I have been together for over 20 years. He’s my original and most important partner. He is the reason I found my passion for food, and not in an immediately obvious way. He wasn’t a foodie either, and having grown up in the suburbs of Akron, Ohio, wasn’t exactly steeped in knowledge of global cuisine. Gary’s role was bigger and more important than simply teaching me about food. He brings out my often well-hidden adventurous side, the one that loves a tasting menu, a dive restaurant with the best food in town, or a local favorite cuisine in a foreign land. He encourages me to try new things. He believes I can do anything.
In particular he believed I would make a great mom. The jury is still out on that one, but in the meantime, I am raising two children. My son Nate was born in 2010 and my daughter Peyton followed (the last time she ever did that) in 2012. She’s my mini-foodie, adventurous from the start, and lover of all things grilled meat. Nate, not so much, but we’re working on it. At least I have an excuse to order a few more things in each restaurant I try, and a new perspective on what “kid-friendly” is really all about.
I also have wonderful parents, my sister, brother-in-law, and a new nephew. There are 10 siblings-in-law complete with 13 nieces and nephews. Special thanks to Gary for bringing those amazing people into my life. I have my favorite aunt and grandmother to thank for my appreciation for the finer things in life, and belief that we all deserve to enjoy them.
On to how I spend my days. I’m a partner in one of the world’s largest professional services firms, and in particular, my job is be an independent, trusted advisor to companies around the world. Fortunately for me, my career has both afforded me and provided me countless opportunities to explore the best of food not only in New York City, but around the world. My work has taken me as far as London, Mumbai, Hong Kong, Tokyo, and Taipei, as well as cities closer to home like Chicago, Boston, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Houston.
My work also sent me to live part-time in San Juan, Puerto Rico, where I learned to appreciate not only local cuisine, but the home chefs that carry on the traditions. I also explored the food of South America and Spain thanks to the global team I had the pleasure of working with for over 2 years. Finally, there’s the reward for my work – the ability to travel the world, to places like Iceland, Italy, Spain, Portugal, Germany, Ireland, the Czech Republic, and France, with many more to come.
Then there’s my life. I have lifelong friends and new ones to mark the seasons. They’re an important part of my food experience, so you’ll often hear me talk about them as I navigate the culinary world. I spend most of my spare time with them, occasionally stirring in my other hobbies and passions — mostly golf and wine. I also enjoy design and photography, and while I’m still learning, I hope to share that journey with all of you through food with a view.
So that’s me. Whether it’s my personality, my job, the influence of friends and family, or all of the above, I’m never shy with my opinions or hesitant to share my passions with others. I am taking my love of all things food to the next level with foodwithaview.com, your opinionated guide to [north jersey] food. It’s my passion project, my side hustle, my baby, and I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I have enjoyed creating it.