DJ was educated at the University
of Washington in nutrition, health education and food science. As a result
of the institutional "white" world of a 1970's dietician (in which therapeutic
meals consisted of white bread, Saltines, white rice and the required dose of
Jell-O) she was driven to reinvent the institutional model of healthy food. DJ
chose the restaurant industry for this application.
1978, Café Optimum was established. As CEO and Executive Chef, her
innovation in applying progressive nutritional principles within the
commercial food industry set a new standard referred to as "Northwest
Cuisine". Based upon DJ's extensive knowledge of food and its core
participation in sustaining optimum health, she radically redesigned
restaurant product and protocol. Café Optimum received numerous
accolades and top ratings for excellence, but its true legacy resides in the
transformation of consciousness within the Northwest restaurant industry.
In 1992, using similar principles
applied to Café Optimum, DJ developed the Optimum COREhealth Program with
the mission "Add more years to your life and more life to your years." Café
Optimum was translated into an efficient system of nourishment designed for
use by individuals at home. In 2002, she further refined the system for
educational use in a clinical setting.
practices changing public perspective:
The first non-smoking restaurant
All meal components were made with whole,
Served the first hook-and-line-caught
fish, caught, bled and delivered by small fisheries within three days
(10-14 days is the norm).
Optimum fish was oven-poached at low
temperatures to preserve nourishment and texture.
Meals included two cups of life-giving,
fresh, colorful, sublimely-seasoned vegetables.
The organic salad greens common today were
grown by DJ's request by local farmers and considered s unusual that a
menu describing each green was served with the salads.
Used only unaltered, non-toxic fats in
cooking, dressings and sauces.
No use of pre-packaged, industrial or
Used only local lamb and chickens
allowed to graze and feed naturally.
Used raw dairy products with fats and
proteins undestroyed by heat.
Served low-glycemic, whole-food desserts.
Used whole, real unprocessed salt, dried
from the ocean and contributing valuable electrolytes to the meal.
Used whole, organic grains, primarily
Served coffee roasted and tested for
preservation of antioxidant oils and minimal tannic acid. Café
Optimum brewed it by the cup at the table or from the 3rd espresso
machine in Seattle.
Updated October 4, 2007