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The Food Snob's Dictionary: An Essential…

The Food Snob's Dictionary: An Essential Lexicon of Gastronomical…

by David Kamp

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This compact book wasn't exactly what I was expecting. Given that it's a dictionary obstensibly for "food snobs," you might think it would show them some respect. But this dictionary, while quite informative, was completely irreverent and downright snarky. To be honest, I really found myself chuckling as I read the entries.

The "definitions" included culinary terms (molecular gastronomy, artisanal, crudo), procedures (brining, expedite, plating), famous chefs (Alice Waters, Marcus Gavius Apicus, James Beard), gourmet foods (speck, crepinette, fennel pollen), food purveyors (Dirty Girl Produce, Cowgirl Creamery, Niman Ranch), and kitchen equipment (bain-marie, All-Clad, Global Knives). Often, the word being defined is used in an illuminating sentence, such as, "Ever since Chef got his own TV show, he hardly ever cooks anymore; basically, he comes in two nights a week just to EXPEDITE and scream at us like a dick." Oh, and did I mention the foul language? Didn't offend me in the least. Actually, it cracked me up, but that's me.

Aside from the humor, there is a lot of good information here for the person looking to learn about both current trends and culinary history. As a San Franciscan, I was impressed by how many local food purveyors these New York authors included in their book. But they're not just bi-coastal, the mid-west was represented as well. If you're interested in the subject, this book is worth picking up to assess your personal snobbery quotient--or perhaps potential. ( )
  suetu | Oct 26, 2007 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0767926919, Paperback)

Food Snob n: reference term for the sort of food obsessive for whom the actual joy of eating and cooking is but a side dish to the accumulation of arcane knowledge about these subjects

From the author of The United States of Arugula--and coauthor of The Film Snob’s Dictionary and The Rock Snob’s Dictionary--a delectable compendium of food facts, terminology, and famous names that gives ordinary folk the wherewithal to take down the Food Snobs--or join their zealous ranks.

Open a menu and there they are, those confusing references to “grass-fed” beef, “farmstead” blue cheese, and “dry-farmed” fruits. It doesn’t help that your dinner companions have moved on to such heady topics as the future of the organic movement, or the seminal culinary contributions of Elizabeth Drew and Fernand Point. David Kamp, who demystified the worlds of rock and film for grateful readers, explains it all and more, in The Food Snobs Dictionary.

Both entertaining and authentically informative, The Food Snob’ s Dictionary travels through the alphabet explaining the buzz-terms that fuel the food-obsessed, from “Affinage” to “Zest,” with stops along the way for “Cardoons,” “Fennel Pollen,” and “Sous-Vide,” all served up with a huge and welcome dollop of wit.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:24:27 -0400)

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