Food writer Kuh brings readers inside the high-stakes business of high-end restaurants through untold anecdotes, legendary cooks and bright young stars, along with his own reminiscences and reflections. From Julia Child to James Beard, Kuh whips up a feast of gastronomic history.Food writer Kuh brings readers inside the high-stakes business of high-end restaurants through untold anecdotes, legendary cooks and bright young stars, along with his own reminiscences and reflections. From Julia Child to James Beard, Kuh whips up a feast of gastronomic history.Read Less
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Publishers Weekly, 2001-01-22 Chef and food writer Kuh offers an excellent, clear-eyed look at the death of old-fashioned American restaurants (exemplified by Le Pavillon) and the advent of a new kind of eating. In his pop-historic overview, Kuh transmits the changes in American culture that led to its diverging culinary habits, but it is the moments of personal narrative that really shine. He researches the 1939 World's Fair to trace the development of Henri Soulé's Le Pavillon. In describing the evolution of the restaurant business, Kuh by extension renders the development of an entire culture?including some fascinating insight into the mainstreaming of the use of credit cards at restaurants (as opposed to keeping "running tabs"). The section on Julia Child and her work does not disappoint, and includes provocative tidbits about her vitriol toward Joe McCarthy. Kuh brightens his text with references to his own employment in various restaurants in Europe and the U.S.?and to a stint as a private chef for a man who once informed him, "French is as ethnic as I get"?nailing the insider's jargon and experience. His work is imbued with sly humor: he refers, for instance, to a mysterious former Chez Panisse worker who's almost impossible to track down as "Deep Palate." This is a thoroughly enjoyable read that imparts plenty of information. (Mar. 19) Forecast: A stylish cover featuring tuxedoed and gowned diners should draw the upscale crowd the book is aimed at, and sales will increase if booksellers pair this more historical behind-the-scenes look at the restaurant business with Anthony Bourdain's Kitchen Confidential, published last year. Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
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