In memory of
Agranoff, Raquel 5/5/1933 - 6/30/2020 Raquel (Ricky) Betty Agranoff, wife, mother, chef, and entrepreneur, passed away peacefully in her home on June 30th, surrounded by family. Born to Mike and Ida Schwartz on May 5, 1933, in Randolph, MA, Ricky learned an early appreciation for food from her grandmother who taught her recipes from the old country such as borscht and blintzes. At the age of 20, Ricky moved to the Philippines to join her father and his second wife Victoria, her half-sister Stephanie, and two half-brothers Michael and Lewis. While there, she was discovered by a talent agent who introduced her to the nascent Philippine film industry where she starred in a number of productions under the screen name "Ricky Blake." Her two-plus years there were some of her fondest memories and she often spoke of the two monkeys she had as pets and what joy they brought. Soon after moving back to the States, she met a young doctor at a party in Washington, D.C. She and Bernard Agranoff were married in September, 1957 in Boston, MA. While Bernie worked at NIH, Ricky's love for food grew after marriage, and she sought out teachers to help hone her skills. In the late 1950s she heard about a young chef in New York city that was giving lessons out of his apartment. It was there that she had her first introduction to the subtleties of haute cuisine with James Beard as her teacher. Ricky and Bernie moved to Ann Arbor in 1962. Ricky created a cooking school and catering company called A La Carte, and began her storied career of bringing an appreciation for fine dining to the region. After an internship at one of France's Michelin three-star rated restaurants, Troigros in Lyons, France, Ricky opened the Moveable Feast in Kerrytown. Starting as a small shop with fine foods and a bakery, it grew into Ann Arbor's finest restaurant, earning A Best Restaurant in the Detroit Metro Area award from Detroit Monthly Magazine. After her restaurant and catering career, Ricky continued her connection to the culinary arts through her leadership in the local chapter of Les Dames D'Escoffier, a prestigious international organization focused on gastronomy and hospitality. She and Bernie also attended many performances of the University of Michigan Musical Society, of which she and Bernie have been avid supporters. Ricky is survived by her adoring husband of nearly 63 years, Bernard; her two loving sons, William and Adam; four grandchildren, Leo, Madeleine, Isaac, and Sadie; as well as her sister Stephanie; and brothers, Michael and Lewis. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the University Musical Society; University Musical Society, Burton Memorial Tower, 881 North University Avenue, Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1011; or online here https://tickets.ums.org/donate/contribute1 A visitation will be public for family and friends to rotate through on Thursday, July 2, 2020 from 5:30-7:30pm at Nie Family Funeral Home; 2400 Carpenter Rd, Ann Arbor, MI 48108. Please see www.niefuneralhomes.com or call us at 734-971-2345 for visitor guidelines. The burial will be privately held at Arborcrest Memorial Park; Ann Arbor, MI.
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