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The Food Life: Inside the World of Food with the Grocer Extraordinaire at Fairwayby Steven Jenkins
Synopses & Reviews
Fairway, a local institution in New York City for more than fifty years, is the busiest food store in the world. There shoppers can find innumerable artisanal food products, which, for three decades, Steven Jenkins has traveled the world to find. With a wonderful narrative and anecdotes from the man who personally brought so many of the world's greatest foods to New York and the United States, readers will become more enthusiastic shoppers and better cooks. Jenkins's longtime associate, Mitchel London, provides recipes that will attract not only Fairway customers but any home cook who has access to great ingredients.
"This enormously enjoyable meditation on subjects like Spanish olive oil, bagels 'boiled in city tap water' and the varieties of Italian pork products was penned by the cheese guru behind New York City's Fairway Market, who published in 1996 a definitive cheese encyclopedia (Cheese Primer). Less didactic, but written in the same hard-bitten but friendly style, Jenkins brings wry good humor to his chronicle of the Fairway grocery empire, following his progress from a single, smallish outlet on Manhattan's Upper West Side to a four-warehouses-and-counting institution. Along the way, he introduces readers to the countless characters, headaches and small pleasures that constitute life in the grocery business. Who knew how much work went into creating the perfect olive display? Or how much aggravation is involved in importing raw-milk cheese? Or how hard it is to maneuver cases of dairy products, especially at four in the morning? A handful of terrifically appealing recipes accompany the text, nailing just about every specialty a food lover could crave: Sauteed Veal Chop with Arugula Salad, Classic Creamy Mashed Potatoes, Lentils with Garlic Sausage, and a heavenly Rustic Apple Tart with Crème Fraiche. Among the recipes, the charming photographs, and the detailed Fairway lore, this book may convince some foodies to move to New York City-or least to do all their grocery shopping there." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
Book News Annotation:
Jenkins takes food lovers on a tour of Fairway Market in New York City, the busiest food store in the world, through its different departments. He also describes how he began working in the field and at the store, the founding of three new stores, and the people who work there. Recipes are incorporated throughout, provided by London, chef of the Fairway Café and Steakhouse. The index lists recipes only. Jenkins, chief specialty foods buyer at Fairway Market, also writes for food publications. Annotation Â©2009 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
About the Author
Steven Jenkins is the author of Cheese Primer, which won the James Beard Award and is in its tenth printing. Currently a vice president and the chief specialty foods buyer at Fairway, he has written for numerous food publications and appears regularly on television and radio. He lives in New York City with his wife and two children.
Mitchel London runs the Fairway Café and Steakhouse, and is its chef de cuisine. He was Mayor Ed Koch's official chef at Gracie Mansion for seven years and is the coauthor of The Mitchel London Gracie Mansion Cookbook.
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