Customer Reviews


16 Reviews
5 star:
 (7)
4 star:
 (3)
3 star:
 (2)
2 star:
 (3)
1 star:
 (1)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favorable review
The most helpful critical review


11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Engrossing exploration of NYC and its obsession with eating out
I started this wonderful book not knowing what to expect. In it I found not only meticulous research but also an evocation of a past New York. We travel with the author from the brawling port of early nineteenth century New York where cuisine would hardly be the word to describe eating habits into the increasing sophistication of an International destination. Filled with...
Published on December 14, 2009 by Jean Baptiste

versus
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars For this New York foodie, a big let-down
My overall impression of this book is that Mr. Grimes was exhausted after doing the research, which I must say was extensive and scrupulously done. I can only imagine the vast amounts of information that were available. But, having found it all and strung it all together, he failed to find the statue hiding in the marble. As he approached the end, it became more of a...
Published on January 26, 2010 by Edie Sousa


‹ Previous | 1 2 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Engrossing exploration of NYC and its obsession with eating out, December 14, 2009
I started this wonderful book not knowing what to expect. In it I found not only meticulous research but also an evocation of a past New York. We travel with the author from the brawling port of early nineteenth century New York where cuisine would hardly be the word to describe eating habits into the increasing sophistication of an International destination. Filled with references to actual dishes and menus , to the individual restauranteurs who risked and won or lost, and the chefs, waiters and busboys who manned the kitchens the book reveals through the lens of food the excitement , brashness, and vigor of New York over almost 200 years. In the final chapter we find a personal memoir of Grimes' tenure as critic at the Times. It reveals the author's serious dedication to establishing an analytical approach to food criticism as well as revealing the truly nutty and competitive world of restaurants in contemporary New York. Grimes has a ability to encapsulate in a single phrase many convergent social, philosophical and historical forces that spread the narrative far beyond food and into how we live our lives. I recommend this book heartily to anyone who likes to eat, dines out, and is interested in New York.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good eating, good reading, December 14, 2009
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Grimes is an excellent writer who really brings his subject to life. I found myself immersed in the tastes and excitements of New York from the 1800's until the present. In the author's capable hands, food becomes a fascinating prism in which to understand the history of a great city.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A worthy successor to the Batterberrys' classic ON THE TOWN IN NEW YORK, November 11, 2009
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Well researched,gracefully written, and well designed. Unfortunately,the inferior way in which the book's many illustrations are reproduced is not equal to Mr.Grimes' prose or his insights. The publishing equivalent of a fine silk purse stitched with cotton twine.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great for food historians, maybe less for the casual foodie, July 30, 2010
If you're looking for a witty guide through the history of food in NYC, that's just not the author's writing personality. Try a different book. That said, books I've seen of that nature often have the air of snobbishness that comes from food the highfalutin foodie types that no one really can stand.

This book is just down to earth history about what happened, why it happened and why it is no longer here. Just a simple but fantastic book about the history of the restaurant business in New York. Aside from making me really hungry, it makes me look at the city's food business in a very different way, i.e. from both historical geography to proximity to business, to necessity all together. To clarify, it's obvious that you're going to find certain restaurants in certain areas. However, is it obvious how that all came to pass and why that specific type of restaurant in that specific manner relative to what exists elsewhere and before it's time? Perhaps to some, but not to me.

The history provided as the reasons for diner and cart culture in NYC was really fantastic. It was an absolute pleasure to learn about how little tea houses came into being. Some of the older names and newer celebrity names are featured throughout making for an interesting tale of the growing landscape of how one "makes it" as a restaurateur.

I particularly loved the description of the German automatic machines. I think I saw a random place on the LES or East Village that still uses this type of vending system. Didn't have time to explore and stop in, but this book has truly inspired me to take a look.

Fascinating for NYer and Non-NYr alike.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Who knew?, December 19, 2009
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This book took me by surprise. I could not have imagined that a tale of defunct restaurants could be so lively and so funny. Mr. Grimes has managed to summon up, generously and with great wit, bygone places, people, and an entire era.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars For this New York foodie, a big let-down, January 26, 2010
By 
My overall impression of this book is that Mr. Grimes was exhausted after doing the research, which I must say was extensive and scrupulously done. I can only imagine the vast amounts of information that were available. But, having found it all and strung it all together, he failed to find the statue hiding in the marble. As he approached the end, it became more of a timeline: and then there was, and then there was, and finally. Where was the editor on this project? In my opinion, what should have been a lively history of a rich topic read more like a somewhat humorless dissertation. There were moments of comic relief, but overall I feel that the subject deserved better.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Appetite City: A Culinary History of NY, March 20, 2010
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Written as a history of NY restaurants, this work by W. Grimes is big on detail of 18th & 19th century NY dining but loses steam as it progresses into the 20th century. The author is to be commended for undertaking such an enormous subject matter, but in order to do it justice the book would have to have been double the pages. If you're a "foodie" who loves NY restaurants, this might book fill your appetite. But the average reader will come away hungry for more.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thumbs up for Appeptite City, May 28, 2010
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This book is so terrific, I have already purchased three copies to give as gifts. Whether it's food or history you're into, this is a must for your culinary library.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars IDK, July 23, 2013
By 
Rendon (Southern part of Texas) - See all my reviews
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I bought it as a gift. So I guess I'll find out later.
I only got it because I got a good deal.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars For foodies, December 8, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This has more great information about restaurants from the Colonial era through the 1920s than about contemporary eateries. Well-written, informative.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 2 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

Details

Appetite City: A Culinary History of New York
Appetite City: A Culinary History of New York by William Grimes (Paperback - September 28, 2010)
Used & New from: $1.66
Add to wishlist See buying options
Search these reviews only
Send us feedback How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you? Let us know here.