Synopses & Reviews
Inspired by a deep passion for wine, an Italian heritage, and a desire for a land somewhat wilder than his home in southern France, Robert V. Camuto set out to explore Sicilyand#8217;s emerging wine scene. What he discovered during more than a year of traveling the region, however, was far more than a fascinating wine frontier.and#160;
and#160;Chronicling his journey through Palermo to Marsala, and across the rugged interior of Sicily to the heights of Mount Etna, Camuto captures the personalities and flavors andand#160;the traditions and natural riches that have made Italyand#8217;s largest and oldest wine region the world travelerand#8217;s newest discovery. In the islandand#8217;s vastly different wines he finds an expression of humanity and natureand#8212;andand#160;the space where the two merge into something more.and#160;Here, amid the wild landscapes, lavish markets, dramatic religious rituals, deliciously contrasting flavors, and astonishing natural warmth of its people, Camuto portrays Sicily at a shining moment in history. He takes readers into the anti-Mafia movement growing in the former mob vineyards around infamous Corleone; tells the stories of some of the islandand#8217;s most prominent landowning families; and introduces us to film and music celebrities and other foreigners drawn to Sicilyand#8217;s vineyards. His book takes wine as a powerful metaphor for the independent identity of this mythic land, which has thrown off its legacies of violence, corruption, and poverty to emerge, finally free, with its great soul intact.Watch the
"[Camuto] is a stylish writer with a gift for describing the way his subjects look and think, and express themselves in words and wine. He explains each winemakers approach and results, also adding a bit of insight about intra-French competition and the export market in the French wine industry today."Claire Walter, culinary-colorado.blogspot.com
"What ultimately ensures this unlikely book's appeal to a larger audience than armchair Antarctophiles and demented foodies is that Anthony is a fine, visceral writer and a witty observer. He paints his cast of questers with a Monty-Pythonesque brush, but balances the telling with a refusal to sneer or giggle. He demonstrates genuine respect, compassion and a kind of hopeless love for his quixotic subjects and their grandiose, miserable hungers."and#8212;Rebecca P. Sinkler,and#160;New York Times Book Review
"What distinguishes Anthony's perceptive retelling of Antartic talesand#8212;besides the obvious focus on foodand#8212;is his ability to seamlessly weave details drawn from his own experience into heroic-age tales."and#8212;Peter Andrey Smith, Orion
"[Hoosh is]and#160;a singular, engrossing take on a region that until now has been mostly documented from a scientific angle or romanticized by adventurers."and#8212;Kirkus
"Beyond his own experience, Anthony's knowledge and research is deep, detailing the role of food in historic expeditions both well known . . . and not, including Japanese and Scottish efforts that have rarely been noticed. He also reviews the mid-20th-century adventures of Byrd, Ellsworth, Ronne, and others. Viewing each expedition through the lens of food offers great insight into the people who were really the most important members of those groups: not the leaders whose names we know well, but the cooks, about whom the public knows next to nothing."and#8212;Jeff Inglis, Portland Pheonix
andquot;[Hoosh is] a jaunty history of Antarctic exploration and personal experience from a food perspective.andquot;andmdash;Stephen Downes, Australian
andquot;One of the most enthralling studies of gastronomy ever published.andquot;andmdash;Christopher Hirst, London Independent
Robert V. Camutoand#8217;s interest in wine turned into a passion when he moved to France and began digging into local soils and cellars. Corkscrewed recounts Camutoand#8217;s journey through Franceand#8217;s myriad regionsand#8212;and how the journey profoundly changed everything he believed about wine.and#160;The world of great wines was once dominated by great Bordeaux chand#226;teaux. As those chand#226;teaux were bought up by moguls and international corporations, the heart of French winemaking shifted to the realm of small producers, whose wines reflect the stunning diversity of regional environment, soil, and cultureand#8212;terroir. In this book we follow Camuto across France as he works harvesting grapes in Alsace, learns about wine and bombs in Corsica, and eats and drinks his way through the worldand#8217;s greatest bacchanalia in Burgundy. Along the route he discovers a new generation of winemakers who have rejected chemicals, additives, and technologically altered wines. His book charts an odyssey into this new world of French wine, a world of biodynamic winegrowing, herbal treatments, lunar cycles, and grape varieties long ago dismissed as and#8220;difficult.and#8221; Camutoand#8217;s work is a delightful look beyond the supermarket into the kaleidoscopic world of flavors offered by the true vintners of France.
Antarctica, the last place on Earth, is not famous for its cuisine. Yet it is famous for stories of heroic expeditions in which hunger was the one spice everyone carried. At the dawn of Antarctic cuisine, cooks improvised under inconceivable hardships, castaways ate seal blubber and penguin breasts while fantasizing about illustrious feasts, and men seeking the South Pole stretched their rations to the breaking point. Today, Antarcticaandrsquo;s kitchens still wait for provisions at the far end of the planetandrsquo;s longest supply chain. Scientific research stations serve up cafeteria fare that often offers more sustenance than style. Jason C. Anthony, a veteran of eight seasons in the U.S. Antarctic Program, offers a rare workaday look at the importance of food in Antarctic history and culture.and#160;Anthonyandrsquo;s tour of Antarctic cuisine takes us from hoosh (a porridge of meat, fat, and melted snow, often thickened with crushed biscuit) and the scurvy-ridden expeditions of Shackleton and Scott through the twentieth century to his own preplanned three hundred meals (plus snacks) for a two-person camp in the Transantarctic Mountains. The stories in Hoosh
are linked by the ingenuity, good humor, and indifference to gruel that make Anthonyandrsquo;s tale as entertaining as it is enlightening.
About the Author
Robert V. Camuto is an award-winning journalist and travel writer. He is a contributor to Wine Spectator and the Washington Post and the author of Corkscrewed: Adventures in the New French Wine Country, available in a Bison Books edition.