With a Measure of Grace recounts with sensitivity and wit the tale of a women-owned, Buddhist-based restaurant becoming a community anchor in a small Mormon town. Within the book's 176 beautiful, color-photographed pages, former backcountry caterers and professional river chefs Blake Spalding and Jen Castle share their struggles and successes as the co-owners of Hell's Backbone Grill. Spalding and Castle began with the goal to meld their ideas of place-based, seasonally appropriate cuisine, right livelihood, environmental ethics and social and community responsibility into a restaurant they would operate with compassion, generosity, loving kindness and grace. They were unaware at the time that given the unusual circumstances of their venture, this plan would be the restaurant's only chance of survival.
Located in the heart of the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument, Boulder, Utah, was the last town in the nation to receive year-round mail by mule train. Today it has no stoplight, cell phone service, ATM, grocery store or medical facilities. But it has Zagat-rated Hell's Backbone Grill which, despite all odds, has won the acclaim of national and international media. Sixty-five favorite recipes accompany charming anecdotes, old-fashioned rural wisdom and introductions to captivating local characters, making With a Measure of Grace a warm, earthy, and unforgettable read.
A remarkable book that celebrates a remarkable restaurant in a scenically stunning area of Utah. Few restaurants reflect a sense of place and purpose as fully as this, and even fewer can capture that spirit on the pages of a book. Read their extraordinary story, come to know the farmers and friends who help them succeed, and then recreate and share their simply inspiring food at home”
Bill Jamison, three-time James Beard award-winning cookbook author
The reason we want to write memoir is an ache, a longing, a passing of time that we feel all too strongly.” –Natalie Golderg