Merry White, “Coffee Life in Japan” (University of California Press, 2012)
Merry (Corky) White‘s new book Coffee Life in Japan (University of California Press, 2012) opens with a memory of stripping naked and being painted blue in an underground coffeehouse, and closes with a guide to some of the author’s favorite cafes in Japan. This framing alone is worth the price... Read More
Orla Ryan, “Chocolate Nations: Living and Dying for Cocoa in West Africa” (Zed Books, 2011)
When was the last time you ate some chocolate? If you live in the developed world there’s a strong chance that you’ve been munching on some fairly recently. At the basic level chocolate is an everyday treat and at the top end it is a seriously indulgent luxury product. But... Read More
Cecilia Leong-Salobir, “Food Culture in Colonial Asia: A Taste of Empire” (Routledge, 2011)
Hobson-Jobson was not just about administration and geopolitics- the language of Empire extended to its culinary endeavours as well. Thus chota hazri, tiffin,and curry puffs at Peliti’s were the things that sustained an army of civil servants as they went about registering land records in the United Provinces, negotiating with... Read More
Eric Rath, “Food and Fantasy in Early Modern Japan” (University of California Press, 2010)
Cuisine in early modern Japan was experienced and negotiated through literature and ritual, and the uneaten or inedible was often as important as what was actually consumed. Eric Rath‘s recent book Food and Fantasy in Early Modern Japan (University of California Press, 2010) is a rich study of the culture,... Read More
Danyelle Freeman, “Try This: Traveling the Globe without Leaving the Table” (Ecco, 2011)
Danyelle Freeman, better known as “Restaurant Girl” and a judge on Top Chef Masters, is single. But if you are considering asking out the petite and spunky brunette, you are going to have to compete with some stiff competition. “I prefer a great steak over a great man,” Danyelle said... Read More