Kitchen Creativity

Unlocking Culinary Genius–With Wisdom, Inspiration, and Ideas
from the World’s Most Creative Chefs

by Karen Page
Photography by Andrew Dornenburg

(Hachette Book Group / Little, Brown; October 31, 2017)

From KITCHEN CREATIVITY‘s book jacket:

Unlock your creative potential with the world’s most imaginative chefs.

In this groundbreaking exploration of culinary genius, the authors of The Flavor Bible reveal the surprising strategies great chefs use to do what they do best. Beyond a cookbook, KITCHEN CREATIVITY is a paradigm-shifting guide to inventive cooking (without recipes!) that will inspire you to think, improvise, and cook like the world’s best chefs.Great cooking is as much about intuition and imagination as it is about flavor and technique. KITCHEN CREATIVITY distills brilliant insights into these creative processes from more than 100 top restaurant kitchens, including the Bazaar, Blue Hill, Daniel, Dirt Candy, Eleven Madison Park and the NoMad, Gramercy Tavern, the Inn at Little Washington, Le Bernardin, Oleana, Rustic Canyon, Saison, Single Thread, and Topolobampo.

Based on four years of extensive research and dozens of in-depth interviews, KITCHEN CREATIVITY illuminates the method (and occasional madness) of culinary invention. Part I reveals how to learn foundational skills, including how to appreciate, taste, and season classic dishes (Stage 1: Mastery), before reinventing the classics from a new perspective (Stage 2: Alchemy). Einstein’s secret of genius-combinatory play-pushes chefs to develop unique creations and heighten their outer and inner senses (Stage 3: Creativity). Part II’s A-to-Z entries are an invaluable culinary idea generator, with exercises to prompt new imaginings.

You’ll also discover:
  • experts’ criteria for creating new dishes, desserts, and drinks;
  • comprehensive seasonality charts to spark inspiration all year long;
  • how to season food like a pro, and how to create complex yet balanced layers of flavor;
  • the amazing true stories of historic dishes, like how desperate maitre d’ “Nacho” Anaya invented nachos; and
  • proven tips to jump-start your creative process.

The ultimate reference for culinary brainstorming, KITCHEN CREATIVITY will spur your creativity to new heights, both in the kitchen and beyond.


“Utter genius…If Leonardo da Vinci wrote a book on culinary creativity in 2017, this would be it.”

—Michael Gelb, New York Times bestselling author of How to Think Like Leonardo da Vinci and The Art of Connection

An instant classic, the rare book that helps the creator learn to think, not just do.”

—Seth Godin, New York Times bestselling author of Linchpin

This splendid book is the perfect roadmap for a young chef to attain culinary stardom. First, follow the great classic cooks by imitating them. Second, massage that knowledge to fit your palate and esthetic sense. Third and finally, become yourself.”

—Jacques Pepin, Emmy Award-winning television host, recipient of France’s Legion d’Honneur, and author of A Grandfather’s Lessons: In the Kitchen With Shorey

KITCHEN CREATIVITY is a book we would love to have written. A delectable mix of sensuality, intellect, insight and surprise that reveals not only the secrets of creative chefs, but of creativity itself.”

—MacArthur Fellow Robert Root-Bernstein and Michele Root-Bernstein, authors, Sparks of Genius: The 13 Thinking Tools of the World’s Most Creative People

KITCHEN CREATIVITY is a book we would love to have written. A delectable mix of sensuality, intellect, insight and surprise that reveals not only the secrets of creative chefs, but of creativity itself.”

—Shoshana Zuboff, Charles Edward Wilson Professor of Business Administration Emerita, Harvard Business School, and author of Master or Slave? The Fight for the Soul of Our Information Civilization

One of the Fall and Winter’s Best Cookbooks for Chefs….This new tome from Karen Page, author of THE FLAVOR BIBLE, aims to spark chefs’ creativity. Page gathers insights both philosophical and practical from famed chefs: Kyle Connaughton of Sonoma’s Single Thread, for example, muses on the differing role of creativity in cooking in Japan and the US, while Tal Ronnen and Scot Jones of Crossroads in L.A. discuss the nuts-and-bolts development of their vegan ‘seafood’ tower. Page points out the patterns in how great dishes come about, encouraging readers to recognize the pressures and accidents that often result in something wonderful, as well as the self-reflection and experimentation required to get there.”

—Maggie Hoffman, Plate Magazine

Top left: Daniel Boulud (center) and his team: Aaron Bludorn of Cafe Boulud, executive chef Jean-Francois Bruel, executive pastry chef Ghaya Oliveira, Travis Swikard of Boulud Sud, and chef de cuisine Eddy Leroux; top right: Jose Andres; middle left: Ana Sortun and Chris Kurth; middle right: pastry chef Taiesha Martin; bottom left: Curtis Duffy; bottom right: Rocco DiSpirito, Tom Colicchio, Marc Vetri, Nancy Silverton, Bill Telepan, Dahlia Narvaez, Andrew Smith at WITS benefit at Riverpark

KITCHEN CREATIVITY will be available at better bookstores everywhere as of October 31, 2017.
– For review copies and further information, contact Little, Brown publicist Zea Moscone at
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