France is in a rut, and so is French cuisine. For the first time in the annals of modern cooking, the most influential chefs and the most talked-about restaurants in the world are not French. Large segments of the wine industry are in crisis, cherished artisanal cheeses are threatened with extinction, and bistros and brasseries are disappearing at an alarming rate. How did this happen? Author Michael Steinberger investigates in this sharp and funny book, following the trail into the kitchens and vineyards of France, with detours into French politics, economics, and culture. The result is a striking portrait of a cuisine and country in transition.
A friend lent me this book before I went to France last September. Now I find that I must own it. It is just beautifully and engagingly written. You will be enthralled from start to finish, especially if you are into French food, chefs, have familiarity with the Michelin star system and all that. Steinberger gets to the bottom of the changes in France, but I wouldn’t say the “End of France” at all, after reading it and going there. French chefs who love the cuisine are adjusting and reinventing, still doing their thing, and doing it well, for the most part. In Paris, we went on the hunt to find some of Steinberger’s favorite places and it was so much fun to approach Paris in this way. And we ate the praline deux mille feuille (“napoleon”) of Pierre Herme on at the plaza in front of St. Sulpice, just like he does on the last 2 pages of the book. And just so you know, all 4 of Christian Constant’s restaurants are in the same block of Rue St. Dominique, near the Tour Eiffel. Loved the book, highly recommend it.
No denying that French technique is still a solid base for building exciting new flavors and food trends. It’s just that the real innovations aren’t happening in France any more. This book is a clear-eyed look at what’s really going on in the most exciting areas of foodie culture, and what has been going on in France for the past few decades.
on time and as expected
- Title: Au Revoir to All That: Food, Wine, and the End of France
- Autor: Michael Steinberger
- Publisher (Publication Date): Bloomsbury USA; First Paperback Edition edition (May 3, 2010)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1596913533 | 1596915064
- ISBN-13: 978-1596913530 | 978-1596915060
- Download File Format: EPUB, PDF