Skip navigation
Maker Info
About Anna Darden and Backyard Brunch

My lifelong passion for cooking began as a farm girl surrounded by amazing produce, a stocked pantry, subscription to Gourmet magazine, and the loving tutelage of an exquisite cook - my mother.

Since no one else my age was cooking, I guess I stood out a little in my community. I became rather well known and started receiving requests like "could you make that salad for my party this weekend?" to being asked to cater a wedding... all before the 8th grade. I continued to cook and manage kitchens through college while studying full-time and graduating with a BBA from Walla Walla University. I went full-time into business, all but abandoning this love for cooking. For a time, I wouldn't even tell people I knew how to cook!

Then in 2007 I moved home to the Napa Valley. Immersed in a world of culinary excellence, it didn't take long to realized how fundamental cooking is to who I am. Surrounded by a community of people who share my passion, it was easy to finally put into perspective what I love and what had become my unique approach -- a far different perspective than I had imagined those years before. I deeply respect and appreciate the art of professional chefs, but that's not how I love to cook or what inspires me in the kitchen. It's the simple art of home cooking.

Today my "day job" is in representing the exquisite wines of Pahlmeyer. The joy of cooking, as it began, my passionate hobby.

Be sure to connect with my Backyard Brunch page on Facebook!