Thanks for supporting an independent bookstore—offering informed, opinionated perspective since 1983.

About The Store and Its People

Kitchen Arts & Letters is a New York City bookstore specializing in food and drink. The books you see listed here are our latest arrivals with a few longtime bestsellers mixed in. They are just a fragment of the more than 12,000 titles we have in stock, which come from all over the world and are in many languages. We hope you find our website useful and fun, but it’s hard to beat a visit to the store.

We opened in 1983. Julia Child, James Beard, and Laurie Colwin were among our early customers and ever since we have been helping people who are serious about food–or who want to get serious about food–find books they want, need, and will enjoy. Today our customers include Michelin three-star chefs from around the world and neighborhood home cooks who want to put a good dinner on the table.

Our store is much more than cookbooks. We carry a range of food history and scholarship, a deep selection of operations and technical manuals, and what we feel is a terrific array of great food writing. We also actively track down out-of-print and otherwise scarce books for our customers. All that’s to say, if you don’t see what you want among the books on this site, please call or email us. 

Our phone number is 212-876-5550; you can write to

Nach Waxman, Founding Partner

Nach opened Kitchen Arts & Letters in 1983, having previously worked in book publishing for eighteen years. Most of his time during the 21st century was devoted to KAL’s out-of-print business. Although he enjoyed nearly every aspect of the world of food, he particularly relished food history and culture, which is reflected in the store’s substantial stock in those areas. His cooking passion was the many cuisines of India, although he was more than casually interested in Jewish food traditions as well. He was a member of the James Beard Foundation’s Hall of Fame. Sadly, he passed away in August, 2021 and is deeply missed.

Matt Sartwell, Managing Partner

Matt came to Kitchen Arts & Letters in 1991 after a career as a book editor. He’s the store generalist, doing a lot of weeknight cooking, occasional sweet and savory baking, preserving, and dabbling everywhere. (Cookbooks are to him as shiny things to a magpie). Matt handles much of the domestic ordering, as well as importing books from Spain, Germany, Italy, Australia, and elsewhere. He is a former chair of the book committee of the James Beard Awards.

Laura Jackson, Sales Associate

Born in New Mexico, raised in Colorado, Laura made her way to New York City to attend The Natural Gourmet Institute for Health and Culinary Arts. Her first job after culinary school was at the now-shuttered NYC staple vegan eatery Angelica Kitchen, where she remained for four years. While her passion lies in whole foods-based cuisine, she couldn’t resist the call of pastry. After over fifteen years in the back of the house, Laura is pursuing her food-related interests outside the professional kitchen. She assists Nach with the out-of-print operations at Kitchen Arts & Letters.

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