By the time I was five I had a pretty sophisticated fully developing palette. I knew I didn’t like the ordinary hamburgers or hot dogs and definitely not  the ubiquitous peanut butter and jelly sandwich that was perfunctorily served at all 50’s children’s parties.   I had mild or not so mild meltdowns when my parents said we were on our way to hamburger hamlet for dinner.  I was going to be the only one ordering a tuna sandwich, though they did serve lobster bisque and that could make me happier.   I knew I liked escargot.   I also liked frog legs or anything heavily saturated in butter and garlic.   I wasn’t that keen on the Chinese restaurant either ( Ah Fongs ) but at least I could happily eat the thinly sliced pork with sesame seeds and then I would dunk it heavily into duck sauce.  Wanton chips to eat at the table were the main staple that would fill my tiny stomach.

There were only two good French restaurants in my childhood here in Los Angeles.  My dad took me to the one on Ocean Avenue each Friday night for Bouillabaisse.  The restaurant was called Belle Vue.. I couldn’t be happier with my appetizer of escargots or frog’s legs and sharing a big giant bowl of  amazing fish soup that had crostini ( in those days it was still called toast points) loaded with a saffron rouille.  Happy me.

I went on a lot of expense paid vacations in the 70’s because I was an actress in television commercials at the time.  One job was a modeling job that took me to Carson City, Nevada and I don’t remember the job at all, couldn’t even tell you what I was advertising but I can tell you that the ad agency took me to dinner at a Basque restaurant and I called home to my parents bragging that I ate everything on my plate and described in detail all the interesting tastes.  One job, okay, a big one, a national Clairol, took me to Miami, Florida.  Sure, I remember the job well but my taste buds were sparked and excited by the stone crab and the special creamy mustard sauce at Joes Stone Crab.
I lived  on the beach in Malibu spending all my residual checks on the high rent.

It was a far drive to head to Musso & Franks on Hollywood Blvd. for either the eggs Benedict or flannel cakes, okay, sometimes both.  This was also a favorite haunt of my fathers, my dad and I loved the crusty French bread they had/have.  I loved a piece of pecan pie served warm with whipped cream and thankfully the restaurant that served it was in Malibu.  It’s long gone but the reason I loved this particular pecan pie was because it was the closest to my southern mothers best recipe of pecan pie.

The culinary world finally exploded and collided with my taste in the early 80’s and I was in heaven trying all the new restaurants like Spago and La Toque.  The chefs were now the new celebrities and I knew why.  No one could appreciate this new turn of events like I could and did.  At the same time I was dating the future father of my children whose mother worked for Chuck Williams of Williams Sonoma.  I call her Gourmet Grandma.  Gourmet Grandma was a bigwig at Williams Sonoma and through her I got to eat at both James Beard and Jacques Pepins house.  Gourmet Grandma would send me signed copies of all the new famous chef’s cookbooks and I was like a star fucker in this food world.  I grew up in the world of show business and my dad knew the world, everyone from Frank Sinatra and Bobby Darin to Lenny Bruce.

Those people didn’t really impress me, but  Ken Frank, Jacques Pepin and Wolfgang Puck blew me away.  I had a semi-unknown strange idol in Ruth Reichl at the time.  She wasn’t that well known yet, hadn’t written any books but was the Los Angeles times food critic.  Sometimes readers sent in nasty letters about her and I never understood why so I wrote a nasty letter back to them defending her that got published in the Sunday paper. Basically I was obsessed with food.  I didn’t know how to cook though and it took my small kids being hungry to propel me into learning to cook.  Gourmet Grandma reluctantly taught me a few tricks that I use to this day.  It was so easy to go to a restaurant or pick up take out from a restaurant and I was spoiled by this but so proud of myself when I finally did cook dinner for my family.  Baking is what I love the most and now I’m spoiled by my own cakes and rarely order dessert when I’m out to dinner.

Enough about me.  You get the idea, I love great food.



Here is a letter I wrote to Ruth Reichl – published in the Los Angeles Times – here.

7 Responses to “About”

  1. Jeff says:

    Hi Fredde/Freddy/Phred-E/Fredrika <—that last one works just fine

    Met briefly yesterday while we all mutually gawked at each others food at Todd English's food court (I was the fella at the far end not offering my picture-taking services). Had a quick minute to look over your blog… and quite a hoot it is! (yes, i said "hoot"). Your conspiracy theory is insightful, yet dangerous, so watch your back. I'm certain you know you're in's and out's on where to go while you're visiting NYC, but if you need some suggestions (heck, i'm not called the "Skinniest Fatboy" for nothing… you can always email me direct.

    good appetite,

  2. Cindy Lou Carlson says:

    Dear Freddie,

    I was thinking about you and googled your name. What a thrill to see your blog and read so much about your life, and see the picture of your dad and you as a young child. I can’t help thinking why you didn’t talk about your love for oreos. I miss you and would love to re-connect. I am in Chico and have started my own private school for kids with giftedness, ADHD, Aspergers, high-functioning autism, learning disabilities, and an emphasis on kinesthetic and visual intelligence strengths.

    I would love to hear from you!!!!! Love your friend, Cindylou

  3. Mel says:

    Fredde ~ I love this so much! Muchas Gracias ~ ; 0)

  4. david griffin says:

    i went to school with david fedder who had a brother michael and a sister kayla. their father was dan, a dentist. they lived in encino, as did i, growing up.
    are these the same fedders you are writing about? if so, do you know how i can get in touch with david?
    joy and good health.

  5. Jose says:

    Hello, I know this may seem odd, but my father was employed by Susies father Els. You’ve mentioned them in a post somewhere before I believe. I just wanted to know if I could get in contact with you in order to contact susie. I know both of her parents have passed, but it would mean a lot to me if I could let her know how much her father impacted my own and how his generosity still impacts my life today.
    I know this is a long shot, but if the blog owner reads this please contact me via text at 310-431-1370.

  6. Roy Holland says:

    Dear Fredrika

    Terrific stories! Is there a chance the Fuck ‘Em documentary can be purchased? Thank you.

    Warm regards

  7. Ava says:

    Hi Fredrica,
    I’m a journalist for i24news
    Can you send me a link to watch the documentary about your dad ?
    I’d be happy to do a video portrait about him that will air in our Culture show in french

    Thanks a lot
    Ava Mergy

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