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A Flummery of Food: Feasts for Epicures [Hardcover]

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Item description for A Flummery of Food: Feasts for Epicures by Andre Simon...

Drawing on the literature of widely different periods and countries, this book provides a richly entertaining and instructive picture of mankind at the table. It features excerpts from the writings of Charles Dickens, Edward Lear, and Evelyn Waugh as well as items from famous bon viveurs such as George Sainsbury and Brillan-Savarin.

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Item Specifications...

Pages   256
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 6.6" Width: 4.6" Height: 1.3"
Weight:   0.7 lbs.
Binding  Hardcover
Release Date   Sep 1, 2005
Publisher   Little Books
ISBN  1904435440  
ISBN13  9781904435440  

Availability  0 units.

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Cooking, Food & Wine > Gastronomy > Essays
2Books > Subjects > Cooking, Food & Wine > Gastronomy > General
3Books > Subjects > Cooking, Food & Wine > General

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Reviews - What do customers think about A Flummery of Food: Feasts for Epicures?

A delightful buffet of words about food  Jun 22, 2008

André Simon (28 February 1877-1970) was a prolific writer about wine and food. Hugh Johnson describes him as "the charismatic leader of the English wine trade for almost all of the first half of the 20th century, and the grand old man of literate connoisseurship for a further 20 years." Simon believed that "a man dies too young if he leaves any wine in his cellar"; he left two magnums of claret in his cellar at his death. 400 guests drank the two magnums of Chateau Latour 1945 at a dinner honoring what would have been his 100th birthday.

The word "flummery" has a variety of meanings according to the OED; in the food context it originally meant `A kind of food made by coagulation of wheat flour or oatmeal', but later described a variety of sweet dishes made with milk, flour, sugar and other delicacies. Simon was certainly an epicure of food and wine and, as this lovely little book proves, words about food as well.

Simon chose his entries from the literature of different periods and countries. There are extracts from Charles Dickens, Edward Lear, Evelyn Waugh, George Sainsbury, Sir Harold Nicolson, Thomas Hood, Mark Twain and Brillan-Savarin. The selections are complemented by cartoons of James Thurber, Ronald Searle, and past and present Punch artists, and drawings by Toulouse-Lautrec, Cruickshank and Aubrey Beardsley. The printing and the binding are excellent.

A few samples of the treasures here include:

Robert Boyle on curing hangovers: "Take green hemlock that is tender, and put it in your Socks, so that it may lie thinly between them and the Soles of your feet; shift the Herbs once a Day."

Guy de Maupassant: "I became aware that I was eating something particularly delicious, soft-boiled eggs embedded in a layer of meat jelly, seasoned with herbs, and discreetly iced."

Simon himself describing a wine as "a girl of fifteen, who is already a great artist, coming on tip-toe and curtseying herself out with childish grace and laughing blue eyes." [Robert Parker developed his 100 point scale in part, he writes, because of his distaste for this poetic style.]

Simon made his fortune by writing "Laurie's Elementary Russian Grammar", and thereafter devoted himself to writing about food and wine, well over 100 titles including the best selling A Concise Encyclopedia of Gastronomy.

This pleasant little book is perfect for dipping into from time to time, and sharing the culinary pleasures of the world Simon inhabited.

Robert C. Ross 2008

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