Stephen Brook
A Century of Wine : The Story of a Wine Revolution
Jan 2000
Octopus Publishing Group

This is truly a definitive work that explores the history, the politics, religion, culture, climatic changes, fashion and social phenomena that have impacted on wine developments around the world. Richly illustrated with hundreds of historic photographs, this is a book that will entertain and inform any wine enthusiast or history buff.

Eugenia Bone
At Mesa’s Edge: Cooking and Ranching in Colorado’s North Fork Valley
Jan 2011
Houghton Mifflin

At Mesa’s Edge chronicles the transformation of seasoned food writer and determined Manhattanite Eugenia Bone into Westward-bound woman of the wilderness. Okay, so maybe she hasn’t abandoned all pretense to city sophistication—Bone and her family live part of the year in New York City. But Bone is now sufficiently ensconced in the rugged lifestyle of Colorado’s North Fork Valley to offer up this memoir, as much a story of her personal transformations on the family’s Colorado ranch as a guide to the cuisine, products, and spirit of this pocket of American wilderness. And while the rest of us soak up the vicarious thrill, despair, and knuckle-busting tribulations, city and coast-bound chefs can pore over the 100 recipes. Bone might not have known how to tackle the terrain as comfortably as her native Westerner husband, but with decades of food savvy under her belt—and in the pages of Gourmet, Food & Wine, Saveur magazines, and more—Bone knows how to tackle the cuisine. Her recipes showcase local flavors in all their traditional glory (“Lamb Hash”, “real Colorado comfort food,” says Bone) and in the context of a more sophisticated perspective (“Game Birth Broth with Cilantro Crespelle”).

Lesley Downer
At the Japanese Table : New and Traditional Recipes
Jun 1993
Chronicle Books LLC

The acclaimed book that demystified Japanese cuisine for home cooks returns. Over 90 exquisite recipes cover every aspect of modern Japanese meals from elaborate kaiseki dinners–the haute cuisine of Japan–to simply prepared noodle bowls for a casual family supper. The dozens of step-by-step techniques illustrations make preparing even the most complicated dishes as easy as ichi, ni, san. Vibrant color photographs take fans of Japanese cookery on a culinary tour of the country, exploring the feasts and festivals, restaurants, sushi bars, street stalls, and even the temples for a taste of this intriguing land.

Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito, Photographs by Tina Rupp
Baked Explorations: Classic American Desserts Reinvented
Oct 2010
Stewart, Tabori, & Chang

Whatever Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito did in their former days jobs, it’s clear they’re serious about sweets. And it’s not just because they’re wearing ties and overly serious expressions in the early pages of Baked Explorations, their second literary endeavor under the auspices of Baked. The duo are regular pastry evangelists, traveling the country in search of “pockets of regionalism in an increasingly homogeneous America,” searching for the written history of American baking, whether it’s tucked away in cookbooks, kitchen drawers or any of the small sweet shops scattered across America. Whether they’re unearthing forgotten classics of old like the Whoopie Pies or reconfiguring much-abused classics like the Chiffon Pie or Grasshopper Sundae, their aim with this ample, deliciously photographed cookbook is simple: to (re)introduce the national palate to the tender-crumbed, cream-whipped, chocolate-chipped staples of American dessert. It’s like getting a fresh baked cookie from Grandma, except it’s two grown men with a serious set of sweet teeth. In an age rich with pastry nostalgia, home and professional cooks alike should get, well, Baked.

A.L. Sadler
Cha-No-Yu: The Japanese Tea Ceremony
Oct 2001
Tuttle Publishing

First published in 1933, this classic remains the gold standard for books on the five-centuries-old tea ceremony. Illustrated with traditional drawings of furniture and utensils, tearoom architecture, garden design, floor and ground plans, and beautiful black and white photographs of famous tea bowls, teahouses, and gardens, this volume will enlighten the reader to the intimate aspects of ancient Japanese history, philosophy, and culture.

Ti Adelaide Martin and Tory McPhail
Commander’s Wild Side: Bold Flavors for Fresh Ingredients from the Great Outdoors
Jan 2009
William Morrow

With Commander’s Wild Side, the legacy of that storied New Orleans institution The Commander’s Palace returns to its roots in the wilds of Louisiana’s Gulf Coast. While the Commander’s Palace restaurant family has expanded to Houston and Las Vegas since the original opened in 1880, the heart of the restaurant remains in New Orleans, specifically in the wilds surrounding the city where ambitious cooks catch their game, fowl, and fish. With Executive Chef Tory McPhail at the helm, Commander’s presents a hoard of recipes that celebrate and advocate a closer connection to the hunting and fishing that make most restaurants possible. The book supports a more sustainable, locally-sourced kitchen practice and the resulting dishes are sophisticated and suffused with strong southern flavors. Chef McPhail cultivates an active relationship between his kitchen and the environment that feeds it, and with this latest in the Commander’s series, he invites you to do the same.

Richard Schweid
Consider the Eel
Mar 2002
University of North Carolina Press, The

Outside of sushi houses and the rare four-star restaurant, most Americans would never think to eat eel, but throughout Europe and Asia you can find it grilled, smoked, stewed, jellied, skewered, fried, baked, sauteed, and even cooked into an omelet. In Consider the Eel, acclaimed writer Richard Schweid takes the reader on a journey to show how this rich yet mild-tasting fish is a vibrant part of the world culture. Discover how eels, from their birth in the Sargasso Sea to their eventual end as a piece of kabayaki or as part of an Italian Christmas dinner, are one of our oldest and least understood gifts from the sea.

Annahita Kamali and Florian Böhm, editors
Cookbook Book
Smita and Sanjeev Chandra
Cuisines of India:The Art of Regional Indian Cooking
Aug 2001
Ecco Press

This lush volume is destined to become the gold standard in Indian cookbooks. Recipes feature authentic, often unusual dishes and are accompanied by lyrical descriptions of locales, legends, and history. Sure to please any connoisseur, this delightful cookbook celebrates a great world cuisine, one that is inseparable from its people and its past.

Greg Critser
Fat Land : How Americans Became the Fattest People in the World
Jan 2004
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Greg Critser engages every aspect of American life to determine how we have made ourselves the second fattest people on the planet (after South Sea Islanders). Fat Land grapples with the expanding American waistline by tracing surprising connections among class, politics, culture, and economics. With groundbreaking research, Critser also investigates the dark metabolic underside of cheap fats and sugars and how their calories stick. Incisive, discerning, and disarmingly funny, Fat Land is a chilling but brilliantly rendered portrait of the cost in human lives — many of them very young lives — of America’s obesity epidemic.

Colman Andrews
Ferran: The Inside Story of El Bulli and the Man Who Reinvented Food
Oct 2010
Gotham Books

In the great and diverse catalogue of literature devoted to the chef, his cuisine, and the El Bulli legacy, Colman Andrews’ coverage stands out as something slightly more personal—as intimate a glimpse into the man behind the curtain as we’re likely to get. The book, purportedly the last biography to which Adrià will contribute, isn’t actually a biography, at least not in the traditional sense. It’s a life story, certainly, a kind of dual biography told in parallel. On one side is the story of Adrià as chef, covering his meandering path from hapless partier, to semi-serious cook, to the driving force behind the next great evolution in cuisine. On the other side is the life of El Bulli the institution, from its inauspicious beginnings as a would-be tourist trap through its various culinary incarnations, to its rebirth as the stucco-ed, breezy, unlikely hub of modern gastronomy. Whether Andrews intended it or not, the parallel is effective, not simply in narrative terms; it emphasizes how the evolutions Adrià and El Bulli are inextricably interlinked, and with them, the future of the culinary experience as we know it.

Diane Kochilas
Glorious Foods of Greece: Traditional Recipes from the Islands, Cities, and Villages
Apr 2001
HarperCollins Publishers

An extraordinary culinary and historical tour, this comprehensive, beautifully evocative cookbook draws a lovely, detailed portrait of a culture in which food is revered for nourishment, necessity, and pleasure. Covering everything from the rich mountain cooking of Epirus, Roumeli, and Thessaly, to the inventive cuisine of the sparse, dry Greek isle, The Glorious Foods of Greece offers more than 400 recipes drawn from generations of Greek cooking that use every native ingredient––including fowl, grains, cheese, greens, seafood, grapes, and olives--that can be prepared by home cooks.

Hi Soo Shin Hepinstall
Growing Up in a Korean Kitchen: A Cookbook
Mar 2004
Ten Speed Press

Part memoir and part cookbook, this is one woman's cultural and culinary story, weaving childhood reminiscences with lovingly gathered recipes. With descriptions of the traditional Korean kitchen, preparations for special feast days, and the rituals of everyday family meals, author Hi Soon Shin Hepinstall draws an engaging portrait of a seldom glimpsed way of life.

Judith Fertig
Heartland: The Cookbook
Apr 2011
Andrews McMeel
There’s no way to summarize a region that’s made up of 12 states (Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, Ohio, South Dakota, and Wisconsin). And longtime food writer and cookbook author Judith Fertig knows that. But what she does do—and does well—with The Heartland is acquaint readers to some of the best food and faces behind the misunderstood mosaic Midwest. With a book full of recipes like “Wisconsin Cranberry Jam” and “Roast Heritage Turkey,” a glimpse of some of the (great) Great Lakes smokehouses, and an introduction to old-school Midwestern ranchers like John and Dorothy Priskie of Fountain Prairie Inn and Farms (who take exactly one grass-fed steer a week to be slaughtered), Fertig and photographers Jonathan Chester and Ben Pieper paint a portrait of a culturally and geographically diverse region, rich in tradition, and—most important for chefs—teeming with high quality local product.
Joan Nathan
Jewish Cooking In America
Sep 1998
Random House Inc

Much more than a cookbook--though it does contain over 300 recipes--this entertaining volume is also a history of the Jewish people through their food. Nathan introduces both people and food in a preface that discusses dietary laws, Jewish holidays, Jewish immigration to the U.S., and the impact of Jews--and their food--on American culture. With every recipe comes an original story or a reprint of an article or a personal vignette that intrigues and/or edifies. For instance, the recipe for falafel appears complete with a profile of Moshe, owner of the best falafel pushcart in New York City. There are also lots of photos, both modern and historic. A number-one choice for cookery collections, but make sure history buffs can find it, too.

Jill DeGroff
Lush Life: Portraits from the Bar
Jan 2010
Mud Puddle Books, New York

Steeped soundly in the culture of the American cocktail scene—now entering the 21st century with a mixed roster of talented, wisecracking, colorful cocktailians—Lush Life is a veritable labor of love, nor simply for being a byproduct of husband and wife Dale and Jill DeGroff’s LA-born romance. The love here is for the people of the cocktail world, and it’s sketched, brushed, and suffused into each of Jill DeGroff’s pictures. And while the book is laid out generationally, Lush Life essentially unites its subjects under the proud patchwork banner of the bartender. A pictorial tour of the beating heart of the American cocktail scene, Lush Life recalls the old school cool of Al Hirschfeld’s “Speakeasies of 1932,” updated with its tech-savvy cast of mixologist up-and-comers and standby old-timers—all of it colored by DeGroff’s inimitable aesthetic eye. DeGroff’s portraits are the beating heart of the book, and they capture the spirit and nuance of this cast of cocktail-slinging characters with visual grace and spry, poetic wit. But lest she leave her reader thirsty, DeGroff includes recipes for favorite and famous drinks, as well as tales from behind the bar and occasional odd remembrances. In the end the whole experience is akin to an evening spent among friends, leaning up against the polished wood of a favorite local bar.

Martin Yan
Martin Yan's Chinatown Cooking : 200 Traditional Recipes from 11 Chinatowns Around the World
Nov 2002
HarperCollins Publishers

Martin Yan, the master of Chinese cuisine, takes the culinary curious on a fantastic gustatory tour of the streets, shops, and restaurants of 11 of the world's most vibrant and rich ethnic enclaves: the neighborhoods called Chinatown. He introduces vendors, chefs, and home cooks who share their secrets in Honolulu, London, Macau, Melbourne, New York City, San Francisco, Singapore, Sydney, Toronto, Vancouver, B.C., and Yokahama.

Romney Steele
My Nepenthe Bohemian Tales of Food, Family, and Big Sur
Nov 2009
Andrews McMeel Publishing

With over sixty years in the restaurant business, Big Sur’s renowned Nepenthe restaurant is still an unwavering symbol of bohemian culture and culinary tradition, as much now as it was when it was founded by the Fassett family six decades ago. My Nepenthe compiles Fassett family history, Nepenthe lore, and 85 diverse recipes to describe the unique cuisine and culture of the Southern California cultural landmark. The history of the place, including profiles of some of its most notable visitors and employees, is interwoven with family and restaurant recipes like “Lolly’s Famous Hotcakes” and “Herb-Stuffed Pork Loin Roast with Wine-Poached Quince.” The overall impact is to give the reader an intimate perspective on the cuisine and family tradition of Nepenthe’s as it’s evolved over the last several decades.

George Mendes with Genevieve Ko
My Portugal: Recipes and Stories
Stewart, Tabori & Chang
Felipe Fernandez-Armesto
Near A Thousand Tables : A History of Food
Sep 2003
Simon & Schuster Adult Publishing Group

2003 IACP Award Winner! Literary Category; Because cuisine is a--perhaps the--defining characterization of culture, Near A Thousand Tables, is a sampler of civilization; because we meet our environment most intimately when we eat, this is an exploration in historical ecology. Because cooks were the first chemist, this is a history of science. Above all, perhaps, because food is universally appealing and irresistibly topical, this is unashamedly a book of human pleasures.

Anthony Bourdain
No Reservations
Oct 2007

With No Reservations, itinerant-foodie-extraordinaire and charmingly churlish cultural commentator Anthony Bourdain serves up a surprisingly intimate journal of his culinary travels around the world. The book, which accompanies the eponymous and wildly successful television show, juxtaposes the breathtaking and the familiar, with photographs of the exotic and extraordinary alongside shots of cast and crew captured between takes in filming. Bourdain provides pithy descriptions and eloquent recollections (delicately laced with his characteristic wit) of every destination, from Java to Sicily to Namibia. Crackling with humor and raw, popping visuals, No Reservations is a testament to the admixture of reverent fascination and plain-spoken honesty that characterizes Bourdain and company as they take on the privilege, and responsibility, of imparting some small part of the world’s culinary and cultural riches to the rest of us, miserably homebound and hungry.

Silvano Serventi and Francoise Sabbas
Pasta : The Story of a Universal Food
Oct 2002
Columbia University Press

Pasta: The Story of a Universal Food shows that this enormously popular foodstuff is not merely a form of nourishment but the result of a lengthy process of cultural construction and the culmination of a wide array of knowledge, skills, and techniques. This volume shows that pasta has existed in various forms throughout Middle Eastern, Asian, and even North African culinary cultures long before its appearance in the West. Pasta is indeed the universal food.

Stuart Chang Berman
Potsticker Chronicles : America's Favorite Chinese Recipes: A Family Memoir
Jan 2004
Wiley, John & Sons, Incorporated

Chinese cooking and culture come together in this beautifully written and illustrated cookbook. Sharing more than 160 recipes, Stuart Chang Berman makes favorite Chinese restaurant dishes accessible by clearly explaining both techniques and ingredients. He also includes heirloom family recipes that give home cooks exciting new possibilities to explore.

Christian F. Puglisi
Ten Speed Press
Anissa Helou
Savory Baking from the Mediterranean: Focaccias, Flatbreads, Rusks, Tarts, and Other Breads
Aug 2007
HarperCollins Publishers

Anissa Helou introduces her book with the Spanish saying that “Without bread, you cannot eat.” She covers nearly every type of Mediterranean bread imaginable, including flatbreads, pizza, focaccia, breadsticks, pies, and savory pastries, in over 130 recipes. The easy-to-follow instructions make even the slightly more complex recipes manageable. After reading this cookbook, you will agree that it is impossible to have a meal without bread.

Trina Hahnemann
The Scandinavian Cookbook
Jan 2009
Andrews McMeel Publishing

Trina Hahnemann’s The Scandinavian Cookbook behaves as much like a cultural ambassador as it does a culinary resource. Written from the unique perspective of the Scandinavian seasonal experience, with its long, bright summers and dark, cold winters, the book provides a calendar year’s worth of recipes, month by month, based on the categorically seasonal nature of Scandinavian cooking. Working her way from January to December, Hahnemann offers up recipes around each season’s most prominent ingredients. In November, meatballs in curry sauce, old fashioned roast with potatoes and salsify, and braised stuff pheasant provide comfort against the encroaching cold. September’s late summer menu features a festive blueberry tart, pickled beets with star anise, and piquant gravlax with a sweet, creamy mustard sauce (Hahnemann recommends ice-cold beer as an accompaniment). Given the extraordinary circumstances of the Scandinavian cook’s resources and lifestyle, The Scandinavian Cookbook is sure to provide invaluable culinary inspiration and insight.

Laura Catena
Vino Argentino: An Insider's Guide to the Wines and Wine Country of Argentina
Jan 2010
Chronicle Books

What does an emergency room physician do in her spare time? Well, if she has spare time, she eats, sleeps, or divides twenty minutes between the two. Not Laura Catena. As if being a doctor in one of the highest pressure realms of medicine isn’t challenge enough, Catena is fully ensconced in the Argentine wine world, a burgeoning but comparatively underexposed player in New World winemaking. Who better than Catena to give Argentine viticulture its due? Wine is her family legacy—her great-grandfather founded the family’s first winery in 1902, meaning the book’s “insider” perspective is bona fide, rooted to the Argentine soil like so many grape vines. Born in Mendoza, “a heaven for winemaking” that’s actually a dessert (where vines work harder, yields are lower, and crop quality is much, much higher) Catena saw her father, a third-generation winemaker, transform modern winemaking practices. And now with a wine production operation all her own, Catena is not only knee deep in the history of Argentine wine, she’s part of its future. Vino Argentino ushers in that future by presenting a thorough, and thoroughly readable, foray into the wine culture and practices of the country from gauchos to Malbec (and well beyond Malbec). Catena doesn’t stop at a discussion of soil and region—although she has that, along with a glossary and maps, too. She introduces the vintners (meet Alejandro Vigil!), the varietals (the floral, peachy, surprisingly crisp Torrontés), even the meteorological phenomena (hail anyone?) that make each region, and each year’s crop, a unique expression of the rich Argentine enological traditions. The cherry on top? Recipes for authentic Argentine dishes like Rib Eye Steak with Chimichurri and Patagonian Potatoes or Crepes with Dulce de Leche.