This book is terrifyingly dry and dull I m bummed that I paid full price for it. I received an Advanced Reader Copy from Goodreads Giveaway and St Martin s Press I was really looking forward to reading this book It was a immense struggle to read I was looking forward to the Parisian history of food, however, I got a historic view of Paris with some food thrown in The history given in this book was amazing and should have been promoted about Paris, but not the solely about the food. From The Critically Acclaimed Author Of PARIS, PARIS And A PASSION FOR PARIS, Comes A Delectable Culinary History Of The Gastronomic Capital Of The WorldIn His Trademark Witty And Informative Style, David Downie Embarks On A Quest To Discover What Is It About The History Of Paris That Has Made It A Food Lover S Paradise Long Before Marie Antoinette Said, Let Them Eat Cake Actually, It Was Brioche , The Romans Of Paris Devoured Foie Gras, And Live Oysters Rushed In From The Atlantic One Medieval Cookbook Describes A Thirty Two Part Meal Featuring Hare Stew, Eel Soup, And Honeyed Wine During The Last Great Banquet At Versailles A Year Before The Revolution The Gourmand Louis XVI Savored Thirty Two Main Dishes And Sixteen Desserts Yet, In , Grimod De La Reyni Re, The Father Of French Gastronomy, Regaled Guests With Fifty Two Courses, Fifteen Wines, Three Types Of Coffee, And Seventeen LiqueursFollowing The Contours Of History And The Geography Of The City, Downie Sweeps Readers On An Insider S Gourmet Walking Tour Of Paris And Its Environs, Revealing The Locations Of Roman Butcher Shops, Classic Belle Epoque Bistros Serving Diners Today And Marie Antoinette S Exquisite Vegetable Garden That Still Supplies Produce, No Longer To The Unfortunate Queen, But To The Legendary Alain Ducasse And His Stylish Restaurant Inside The Palace Of Versailles Along The Way, Readers Learn Why The Rich Culinary Heritage Of France Still Makes Paris The Ultimate Arbiter In The World Of Food From myreview, It was not by accident that Paris became the world capital of gastronomy But how did it happen David Downie, who in his marvelous books has walked you all the way around the City of Light, now walks you back in time to her secret history, through the centuries long saga of how Paris was fed The logistics are staggering, the characters unforgettable, and the stories of the kind you can dine out for a year on Reading, you may just feel that gastronomy as we know it in the best Paris restaurants is the tender flower of mighty and continuous labor dating to the deep, deep past As always, David Downie leads you to see Paris anew, through any lens he crafts for you Don t miss this one Yes a really, really good book But, do I have the cred to review it I am a chef and writer editor I worked in Paris for several months a year for 20 years.Now, I see a few nasty reviews here When that happens, I check out the credentials of the reviewers, to see if anything they have written previously suggests a background sufficient to make them credible as negative reviewers in this instance I don t see that background in the negative reviewers here Which brings me to a philosophical as opposed to personal point the one about being very careful what you say to derogate from a writer s years long, indeed lifelong, efforts, unless your expertise is greater than his, and you can fault find from a deeply informed perspective I am anything but certain a negative review on Goodreads is useful to the community if it comes from any other kind of source. Thank you to David Downie, St Martin s Press, and Goodreads for the giveaway copy of A Taste of Paris At first, reading this made me want to move to Paris, drink wine, and eat And eat And eat Then came the continuous references to famous French figures from history and restaurants that I d never heard of I felt like I needed a French English dictionary, Wikipedia, and Yelp alongside for this read I ended up reading the last three quarters of it with a copy of The New Food Lover s Companion next to me so I could look up the names of dishes and terms that I didn t know I ended up learning a lot about French culture and cooking, but I lost interest in the book early on.Downie is clearly a man with great knowledge of French history and cuisine He references countless cookbooks and memoirs he has read going back hundreds of years For the first hundred pages I thought he was an elitist snob He s really not though just a guy who is an expert in his subject and has a passion for it This is a book written for a certain kind of person a Francophile with a strong background in French cooking and history who has spent time in Paris I m convinced that people who fit into that audience would adore this book, but it wasn t for me. I loved everything about this book the humor, the insight, the history Even if you re not a foodista and you don t love history, there s no better book to walk you through the culinary evolution of Parisian cuisine, from the Greeks and Romans and Russians to modern day. 2.5 Stars A Taste of Paris looks at the history of food in Paris and Parisian attitudes towards food The book starts it s history with the Roman conquest of Paris and goes through modern times Each section gives a brief overview of the bigger moments of the period under discussion and then moves on the the ways the period shaped the eating habits of Paris in the future and where you can see elements of this history in today s Parisian restaurants I guess I mof a historian then a foodie because I found the historiesinteresting than the food restaurant recommendations Once Downie moved on to talking about the restaurants or food trends that harken back to a certain period I got a little bored These sections sounded a bit too tour guide to me Still,there are definitely some places that I will want to check out if I m lucky enough to make it back to Paris Ie keep this book around for reference.I won this book through a good reads give away. anyone who loves Paris, or food, or the history of Paris or food, this is a perfect book It is a wonderfully written walking tour through two thousand years of culinary history and all the unique arondissements of the city, with a wealth of fascinating information Who knew about Marie de Medici morphing from a dainty bride to a grotesquely obese narcissist Or the last meals of Louis XVI Or that Guy de Maupassant had his daily lunch at the Eiffel Tower so he would not have to look at it because he thought it was ugly Stuff like that. Thank you to St Martin s Press and David Downie for the free advance copy Part travelogue, part history book and part humourless self aggrandizement, this book purports to take you through the streets of Paris to the best restaurants most evocative of different periods of the city s culinary history.I did not enjoy this book The pretentiousness bleeds into every page The author both dismissively belittles those wanting to protect authentic French cuisine with a UNESCO certification AND those who enjoy modern cuisine At one point he dismisses fusion cuisine entirely with an off hand line Who even remembers fusion Within the first few pages the author dismisses and insults foodies and alternatively something called foodistas for eschewing actually good food in search of modern, exciting food Um, hello How tone deaf can you be who do you think is buying your book Some of the historical anecdotes were quite well done witty and informative, but the portions dealing with where to go in modern Paris were atrocious Far from being a walking tour as the blurb describes, this book is incomprehensible for anyone not already intimately familiar with the city.First time visitor to Paris Don t buy this book Foodie Don t buy this book. Read our author interview here ve long loved David Downie s books on Paris, for their illumination of a city so many people love He is a consummate researcher, his books brimming with details I d never known before, but he s also a storyteller I can t put his books down So let me share his new book as always, I stayed up WAY too late reading it , A Taste of Paris A History of the Parisian Love Affair with Food.A Taste of Paris is that rare book that combines history with an immensely readable style Think of how Lin Manuel Miranda s Hamilton brought US history to life Downie s book does the same, but with a much broader scope and no music, alas that of several thousand years, and a wide range of social, cultural, and gastronomic changes Dating from c 53 BC until today, Downie shares the places and spaces, people, and recipes that have influenced food and eating in Paris Downie names the Ile de la Cite spot ground zero in the edible and drinkable epic of Paris, he shares architecture, food, wine, history, andthe city of Paris itself grew like an oyster shell, in layers, built from the intermingling of imported styles, merging the Mediterranean and Northern Europe, and so did the culture that produced the often complicated delicacies and refined nectars Parisians and visitors adore today or prefer to fashionably disdain as unworthy of past greatness Downie delves into history, detailing important people, ingredients, trends, andin an interesting, readable way Everything is included recipes, menus, restaurants, food writers and critics, chefs, humble and noble food, and , all written engagingly, as if he was talking to a friend Not only did I learn a great deal, but I was constantly hungry for perhaps archaic dishes or the company of someone long passed Once you read this, you might have to rethink who you would choose for that invite 3 people from history to dinner game You might also, like me, wish to follow in Downie s footsteps, as he purposefully wanders the city of light You ll love this book, and find yourself getting extra copies for your friends who love food, or France, or both especially since your copy will be dog eared and much read Highly recommended.
Is a well-known author, some of his books are a fascination for readers like in the A Taste of Paris book, this is one of the most wanted David Downie author readers around the world.
- 280 pages
- A Taste of Paris
- David Downie
- 07 September 2018 David Downie