FREEDOM, Maine — Not that she needs it, but Erin French has just picked up another accolade. In its June issue “Down East” magazine selected her cookbook, “The Lost Kitchen,” for its list of 100 books every lover of Maine should read.

Every lover of Maine food has probably thought about dining at her restaurant, also named the Lost Kitchen, located in an old mill in Freedom, the town where French grew up. As a kid she’d go by the place on her way to Girl Scout meetings. Now it’s the hottest table in the state, so extraordinarily popular that when it started taking reservations for the summer a few years ago the tsunami of phone calls in the first hour set off the building’s security alarm.

How did someone who started as a short-order cook at her parents’ diner at the age of fourteen and never had formal culinary instruction become such a success? It’s a long story, with plenty of peaks and valleys, and French shared it with us in 2017. Watch our interview to see how far she’s come.

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