Patrick O'Connell, celebrated chef and co-creator of the famed, multi-starred Inn at Little Washington in Virginia, feels that we now deserve our own term for "haute cuisine," and that term is "refined American cuisine." As he points out, our restaurants are among the finest anywhere and we've become a sophisticated, food-savvy nation. So, O'Connell chose a title for his gloriously illustrated new cookbook that reflects this happy state of our culinary culture, Patrick O'Connell's Refined American Cuisine (Bulfinch, $45, 240 pages, ISBN 0821228455). He's been refining the more than 150 recipes for many years, elevating fine, earthy ingredients to produce dazzling versions of traditional dishes heand wegrew up with and adding some superb innovations. To join the ranks of the refined, try his emerald-green Watercress Soup, Pan-roasted Maine Lobster with Rosemary Cream, richly reincarnated Macaroni and Cheese with Virginia Country Ham and Warm Plum Torte with Sweet Corn Ice Cream. A snazzy gift.