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Best Food Writing 2005 [Paperback]

Holly Hughes

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Book Description

Oct. 6 2005 Best Food Writing
Best Food Writing 2005 assembles, for its sixth year, the most exceptional writing from the past year's books, magazines, newspapers, newsletters, and Web sites. Included are the best writers on everything from celebrated chefs to the travails of the home cook, from food sourcing at the greenmarket to equipping one's kitchen, from erudite culinary history to food-inspired memoirs. Like past collections, the 2005 round-up will include pieces from food-writing stars such as Robb Walsh, John Thorne, Calvin Trillin, Amanda Hesser, Ruth Reichl, Colman Andrews, Jason Epstein, and Jeffrey Steingarten. Opinionated, evocative, nostalgic, brash, thought-provoking, and sometimes just plain funny, it's a tasty sampler to dip into time and again, whether you're in the mood for caviar or hot dogs.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Da Capo Press (Oct. 6 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 156924345X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1569243459
  • Product Dimensions: 20.7 x 14.2 x 2.5 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 295 g
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #627,970 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

In this literary feast's sixth year, Hughes has assembled a fine collection of works by chefs, authors, critics, a cookbook editor and a few bloggers: people who write about food "because they love food." Devotion is evident throughout, whether in David Ramsay's "Some Like It Extra Hot," a hilarious love letter to "hot chicken," with which Nashville—and Ramsay himself—is obsessed; or Evan Rail's "One-Room Wonder," which pays homage to a tiny Prague restaurant that provides "a meal for the emotions" as well as superb food. Food's business aspects are explored in Cynthia Zarin's report on Murray's Cheese Shop in Manhattan and Nancy Grimes's exposé of the seamy underside (or "overweight kvetch" side) of being married to a restaurant critic. Idlewords.com's overrated-pizza rant is provocative (and useful), and Monique Truong's "Many Happy Returns" is a beautiful chronology of a restaurant's role in her life. Readers will marvel as Eric Asimov recounts the taste of a special bottle of wine and nod at Judith Jones's wisdom as she reveals what constitutes a good cookbook. Food lovers of all stripes will devour, and savor, this book; its recipes will help readers create their own kitchen alchemy, but the book's real magic is in the writing. (Nov.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

This newest volume in an annual anthology of food writing gathers 46 contributions chosen from last year's books, magazines, newspapers, newsletters, and Web sites. Subjects include a history of apples, a recipe for Barista burgers (from a restaurant in the small town of New Martinsville, West Virginia), a profile of a cheese shop in Greenwich Village, and instructions on the art of butchering. And there are articles on not-so-nice British dining critics who love to "roast restaurants," one from Tuscany on harvesting and pressing olives, and ones on growing your own food, on wine tasting, and on guarding a favorite recipe. In her introduction, Hughes posits that these contributors know food, and when they write, they share a special expertise with readers. The finished book will contain a recipe index. George Cohen
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved

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Customer Reviews

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Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  5 reviews
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best of the Bests Nov. 4 2005
By takingadayoff - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Best Food Writing is NOT a part of the Best American Series (Essays, Travel Writing, Mysteries, Short Stories, Non-required Reading, etc.) The Best American series does include a best recipes edition, but those of us who don't actually cook aren't interested in reading recipes. On the other hand, the Best Food Writing series, which debuted in 2000 with Holly Hughes doing the editing each year, is more about the writing than about the food. Yes, it helps to be interested in food to enjoy these essays, but all you really need is an appreciation of good writing. (This concept was finally illustrated for me last year when I read Best American Essays 2004 and found that the best essay was a piece about knitting. Before reading it, I was completely ignorant about knitting and, I thought, completely uninterested.)

Okay, so Best Food Writing is not part of the Best American series, but I'm going to compare it to them anyway. It's better. I especially like the Best American Essays and Travel Writing, but every year Best Food Writing is my favorite. Is food writing inherently superior? Easier to write? As with a delicious meal, I don't analyze the preparation, I just savor the food.

The 2005 edition includes articles from magazines such as Gourmet and Bon Appetit, from the food sections of newspapers including the New York Times, and from books such as Garlic and Sapphires. Hughes has divided the essays into chapters that are more or less about baking, drinking, the restaurant business, etc. She could have included a chapter called Extreme Foods, because there were several entertaining essays about spicy or otherwise intimidating food.

Some of my favorites of the 2005 bunch were Mort Rosenblum's Nutella adventures, Nancy Grimes's whine about how tough it is to be the wife of a food critic (boo hoo), Gabrielle Hamilton's memories of killing her first chicken, Dorie Greenspan's revelation of the French host's secret to perfect desserts, Diana Abu-Jaber's story of her immigrant family's disastrous failure to keep the old traditions alive, and David Ramsey's account of some extremely spicy chicken.

This year Hughes has devoted an appendix to food blogs, because there are just too many to ignore. I guess she missed Julie Powell's blog chronicling her year-long project of preparing every recipe in Julia Child's Mastering the Art of French Cooking. Powell turned her blog into a terrific book called Julie & Julia, and I wouldn't be surprised to see an excerpt from it in next year's Best Food Writing.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sumptuous, sensual descriptions of food celebrate dishes and history alike. Jan. 6 2007
By Midwest Book Review - Published on Amazon.com
Established food writers as well as newcomers who are passionate about foods grace the pages of a powerful collection which skims the cream from the food writing crop of the past year's books, magazines, newspapers and web sites. This is what makes BEST FOOD WRITING 2005 so wonderful: expect - and receive - only the best in articles which range from reflections on aforementioned cream and its history and qualities to baker Yockelson's reflections on the 'real cake' and its attributes and family bonds involved in a local bread baker's rise to fame. Sumptuous, sensual descriptions of food celebrate dishes and history alike.

Diane C. Donovan

California Bookwatch
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Food and Best Writing! Feb. 27 2009
By Married to a Farmer Boy - Published on Amazon.com
It is about love, adventure, science, fiction, food, family, friends, random people, tradition and rebellion, obsessions and snobbery, and, most importantly, chickens! This is the first book in the series I picked up. I have been reading cookbooks for years, like many of us. I have never read about cooking as life and art. I have never seen food as a subject of affection, hate, and other strong emotions. This is a book you take on a long trip. The book has everything I ever wanted from a book - references to places, cafes, restaurants, books, cookbooks, historical/biological/chemical facts, cost of food, people, recipes, and solid cooking and non-cooking advice.

Let me give you examples:

1. Apples come from Kazakhstan. Not many people know it. Gina Mallet (As Asian As Apple Crumble) does.

2. The book talks about places I have been to and am nearby right now. It makes me want to go places.

3. Most importantly, it talks about chickens - killing a chicken (Killing Dinner), making an omelette baveuse (The Count and I), fried chicken in Georgia and Tennessee, (A Sonnet in Two Birds), Nashville's hot chicken (Some Like it Extra Hot), roast chicken at Zuni Café in San Francisco (Quintessential Californian), and chicken feet dim sum, which I love (Appendix: A Taste of Blogworld).

It's too bad it's only 317 pages long.
5.0 out of 5 stars fantastic essays July 8 2013
By John S. - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I love this series by Holly Hughes. Each year the best essays from food writing are complied into an categorized book. Hughes has done the work of choosing the best for you to enjoy. Recommended
5.0 out of 5 stars Best Food Writing 2005 Feb. 22 2010
By M1 - Published on Amazon.com
I get this and read these every year they come out. Entertaining articles on food.

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