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Chez Panisse, Inc. Records
BANC MSS 2001/148c  
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Access
  • Accruals
  • Acquisition Information
  • Alternate Forms Available
  • System of Arrangement
  • Corporate History
  • General
  • Preferred Citation
  • Processing Information
  • Scope and Content of Collection
  • Separated Material
  • Publication Rights

  • Contributing Institution: The Bancroft Library
    Title: Chez Panisse, Inc. records
    Creator: Chez Panisse
    Creator: Waters, Alice
    Identifier/Call Number: BANC MSS 2001/148c
    Physical Description: 70 linear feet (50 cartons, 11 boxes, 22 oversize boxes, 12 oversize folders, 2 tubes)
    Physical Description: 35 videocassettes (VHS)
    Physical Description: 6 videocassettes (Betamax)
    Physical Description: 1 videocassettes (BetacamSP)
    Physical Description: 1 videocassettes (U-matic)
    Date (inclusive): 1966-2021
    Abstract: Contains selected files from Chez Panisse restaurant and café and from Café Fanny in Berkeley, Calif. Included are organizational documents; correspondence with chefs, cookbook authors, and others; board and staff meeting minutes; daily, weekly, and special menus; cookbook drafts; material about professional and charity events; and publicity about the restaurants, owner Alice Waters, and Chez Panisse chefs and staff.
    Physical Location: Many of the Bancroft Library collections are stored offsite and advance notice may be required for use. For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the Library's online catalog.
    Language of Material: Collection materials are in English


    Collection is open for research.


    Future additions are expected.

    Acquisition Information

    The Chez Panisse, Inc. Records were given to The Bancroft Library by Chez Panisse, Inc. between 2001 and 2021.

    Alternate Forms Available

    There are no alternate forms of this collection.

    System of Arrangement

    Portions of this collection are arranged to the folder level, while others are arranged to the container level.

    Corporate History

    When Alice Waters and a small band of friends founded a neighborhood bistro called Chez Panisse in 1971, they named it after one of the characters in Marcel Pagnol's 1930s film trilogy about two generations of families in the small town Provencal atmosphere of the Marseilles waterfront - an act of homage to the genial comedy, sentiment, and informality of the classic movies in which so much is centered around eating and drinking. Alice Waters has said that from the very beginning that she and her partners tried to do things the way they would like to have them done at a dinner party at home.
    The downstairs dining room has always offered only one fixed-price menu, of three to five courses, but a different one every night, each designed to be appropriate to the season and each composed so as to show off the very finest ingredients obtainable. The upstairs café opened in 1980 with an open kitchen, a wood-burning pizza oven, and an a la carte menu. Café Fanny, a stand-up café that serves breakfast and lunch, was opened a few miles away in 1984.
    Alice Waters and Chez Panisse are convinced that the best-tasting food is organically grown and harvested in ways that are ecologically sound, by people who are taking care of the land for future generations. The quest for such ingredients has largely determined the restaurant's cuisine. Chez Panisse endeavors to make dining there partake of the immediacy and excitement of vegetables just out of the garden, fruit right off the branch, and fish straight out of the sea.
    Chez Panisse has long been in the vanguard of the movement for local farmers' markets. For several years, it actively supported the Garden Project, a model program that changes lives by teaching organic gardening skills to former San Francisco County Jail inmates. The restaurant also works developing an edible schoolyard at Berkeley's Martin Luther King Junior High School, a project that will involve students directly in planting, gardening, harvesting, cooking, and eating, with the goal of teaching them respect for one another and responsibility for the planet by illuminating the vital relationship of food to their lives.
    - Excerpted from press releases issued by Chez Panisse.


    Finding Aid Written By:
    Bancroft Library staff; revised by Alison Bridger (April 2007) and Antonio Espinoza (January 2008)
    Date Completed:
    April 2008

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Chez Panisse, Inc. Records, BANC MSS 2001/148 c
    Motion Picture 1075 D, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley.

    Processing Information

    Processed by Elizabeth Stephens, Rebecca Kim, and Matt Gleeson in March 2002; additions by Alison E. Bridger in 2005, 2006 and 2007, and by Antonio Espinoza in 2008. Additions processed by Lara Michels in 2021.
    The collection has come to the Bancroft in increments since 2001. Processing for some materials may be more complete than for others. The finding aid requires careful perusal because over the years materials have been integreted in different ways and may be found in different places in the finding aid. Starting with additions received between 2019 and 2021, 2021, materials added to the collection will be added to the finding aid but not intelletually integrated. These additions will be described in separate series.

    Scope and Content of Collection

    The Chez Panisse, Inc. Records consist of selected files from Chez Panisse restaurant and café and Café Fanny in Berkeley, California. Included are organizational documents; correspondence with chefs, cookbook authors, and others; board and staff meeting minutes; daily, weekly, and special menus; cookbook drafts; material about professional and charity events; and publicity about the restaurants, owner Alice Waters, Chez Panisse chefs, and staff.

    Separated Material

    Photographs have been transferred to the Pictorial Collections of The Bancroft Library. (BANC PIC 2001.192-PIC). Digital materials have been routed to the Digital Archivist for additional accessioning work.

    Publication Rights

    All requests to reproduce, publish, quote from or otherwise use collection materials must be submitted in writing to the Head of Public Services, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley, 94720-6000. Consent is given on behalf of The Bancroft Library as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission from the copyright owner. Such permission must be obtained from the copyright owner. See: http://bancroft.berkeley.edu/reference/permissions.html .
    Restrictions also apply to digital representations of the original materials. Use of digital files is restricted to research and educational purposes.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Waters, Alice
    Chez Panisse
    Chez Panisse Caf#e
    Caf#e Fanny
    Fisher, M. F. K. (Mary Frances Kennedy), 1908-1992
    Olney, Richard
    Restaurants--California--San Francisco Bay Area