Writer Barry Estabrook of politicsoftheplate.com - Biography

Vergennes, VT

August 2012

Stints working on a dairy farm and a commercial fishing boat as a young man convinced Barry Estabrook that writing about how food is produced might be as helpful—and considerably easier—than actually producing it.

A contributing editor at the late lamented Gourmet magazine, Estabrook now serves on the advisory board of Gastronomica, and he writes for The New York Times, the Washington Post, TheAtlantic.com, MarkBittman.com, Saveur, Men’s Health, and many other national magazines. His work has been anthologized in The Best American Food Writing in 2005, 2007, 2008, 2010, and 2011. Estabrook’s article for Gourmet on labor abuses in Florida’s tomato fields received the 2010 James Beard Award for “Magazine Feature Writing,” and his blog, politicsoftheplate.com revived the James Beard Award for “Best Blog of the Year.”

With Tomatoland: How Modern Industrial Agriculture Destroyed Our Most Alluring Fruit, published in 2011 by Andrews McMeel, Estabrook elaborates on the state of industrial agriculture and its gastronomic, environmental, and human impact on tomato farming. Estabrook lives on a 30-acre tract in Vermont where he gardens, tends a dozen laying hens, taps maple trees, and (in an effort to reduce his alcohol footprint) brews hard cider from his own apples that no one but him seems to like.