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Delancey

Delancey

A Man, a Woman, a Restaurant, a Marriage

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In this funny, frank, tender memoir and New York Times bestseller, the author of A Homemade Life and the blog Orangette recounts how opening a restaurant sparked the first crisis of her young marriage.

When Molly Wizenberg married Brandon Pettit, he was a trained composer with a handful of offbeat interests: espresso machines, wooden boats, violin-building, and ice cream–making. So when Brandon decided to open a pizza restaurant, Molly was supportive—not because she wanted him to do it, but because the idea was so far-fetched that she didn’t think he would. Before she knew it, he’d signed a lease on a space. The restaurant, Delancey, was going to be a reality, and all of Molly’s assumptions about her marriage were about to change.

Together they built Delancey: gutting and renovating the space on a cobbled-together budget, developing a menu, hiring staff, and passing inspections. Delancey became a success, and Molly tried to convince herself that she was happy in their new life until—in the heat and pressure of the restaurant kitchen—she realized that she hadn’t been honest with herself or Brandon.

With evocative photos by Molly and twenty new recipes for the kind of simple, delicious food that chefs eat at home, Delancey is a moving and honest account of two young people learning to give in and let go in order to grow together.
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  • Simon & Schuster | 
  • 256 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781451655094 | 
  • May 2014
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Video

Inside DELANCEY with Molly Wizenberg

Author Molly Wizenberg takes us inside Delancey, Seattle’s beloved pizza restaurant that she opened with her husband, which is at the heart of her new memoir of the same name.

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Read an Excerpt

Delancey 1
If you want to get Brandon’s family talking, you need only ask about his childhood tantrums, aaannnnnnnd they’re off! Their descriptions are sufficiently vivid that you’d think he’d had a screaming meltdown in the family car last week. But if you ask Brandon about his tantrums, he’ll tell you that he was constantly hungry, and that low blood sugar will bring out the wailing, shrieking lunatic in anyone. When he was eight or nine, he taught himself to cope by cooking. And his parents, who... see more

Reading Group Guide

This reading group guide for Delancey includes an introduction, discussion questions, ideas for enhancing your book club, and a Q&A with author Molly Wizenberg. The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for your discussion. We hope that these ideas will enrich your conversation and increase your enjoyment of the book.


Introduction

The follow-up to Molly Wizenberg’s New York Times bestselling memoir A Homemade Life, Delancey provides an intimate, honest look at the challenges and exhilaration faced by a newly married couple when they decide to open a restaurant. In the style of the first book, Delancey features personal recipes that were especially meaningful to Molly during this dynamic time in her life. Written in the smart, accessible style of her popular, award-winning blog Orangette, Delancey will have readers cheering for Molly and Brandon as they put their hearts and souls into the restaurant and ultimately learn they need let go of each other in order to fully live, love, and work together.

Topics & Questions for Discussion

1. In the introduction Molly discusses some of Brandon’s early ambitions, including making violins, building a boat, and opening an ice cream shop. None of these ever materialized. After those nonstarters, why do you think Brandon went through with Dela see more

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