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Cesar: Recipes from a Tapas Bar Hardcover – September 15, 2003


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Ten Speed Press (September 15, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1580084834
  • ISBN-13: 978-1580084833
  • Product Dimensions: 0.9 x 8.1 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #508,019 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In general, tapas presents the diner with dozens of choices in dozens of flavors, and it does so with an emphasis on drinks. In 1998, the authors, all formerly associated with Alice Waters's Chez Panisse restaurant, capitalized on the appeal of tapas and opened Cesar. This cookbook, humorously self-conscious and immediately accessible, includes 100 tapas and drink recipes and allow the home cook to replicate the restaurant's creations. Heavily influenced by Waters's seminal philosophy about food (always fresh, always local, organically grown whenever possible), the dishes are bright with flavor and designed with an emphasis on freshness. Most are easy to make, and the ingredient combinations are stellar. Smoked Trout and Persimmon Salad; Bread Pudding with Orange Caramel Sauce; and Chicken Escabeche Salad are good examples. Half of the book is devoted to beverages, many of them familiar cocktails. But the information about wine and sherry is informative and sophisticated, and the Latin American mixed drink recipes are varied and inspiring. The book's design sometimes runs counter to the cook's endeavors-recipe steps are not numbered, and tend to ramble; introductions to recipes often bury the otherwise helpful tips-but overall the book is fun, inspiring and reliable.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

About the Author

OLIVIER SAID is co-author, with James Mellgren, of THE BAR and CESAR, which was named one of the Top 10 Cookbooks of 2003 by Food & Wine magazine. Currently, he and Mellgren are co-writing a quarterly column in the national publication Trump Magazine, focusing on cocktails and libations. A fifth-generation restaurateur from France, Said is a former managing partner in César, located next door to Chez Panisse in Berkeley, California, and owner of Texas Coyote, a popular restaurant and nightclub in Paris. Said recently opened the upscale Kitchen on Fire cooking school in Berkeley.
JAMES MELLGREN is co-author, with Olivier Said, of THE BAR and CESAR, which was named one of the Top 10 Cookbooks of 2003 by Food & Wine magazine. Currently, he and Said are co-writing a quarterly column in the national publication Trump Magazine, focusing on cocktails and libations. Mellgren is the senior editor of one of the industry's leading trade publications, The Gourmet Retailer. He began his career in New York as the manager of Turpan Sanders in Soho, then spent a decade as a manager for Dean & DeLuca, for which he traveled extensively in Europe. He lives in Berkeley, California.
MAGGIE POND has been the executive chef at César since it opened. She has traveled extensively throughout the Iberian peninsula, and goes back annually to work, eat, and garner new recipes for César. She lives in Berkeley.

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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Cosmas Bisticas on March 29, 2005
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I am charging this lovely book with 1 star for it's extreme focus on cocktails (about 1/2 the book)that you can find in any cocktail book! Manhattan, Mint Julep, Old Fashioned, Rob Roy, Rusty Nail, Whiskey sour, and the list goes on, are neither unique nor relevant to the main subject, Tapas. To me it is obvious that the first 83 pages of this book are just a filler to justify the price.

Having said that the rest of the book is excellent. Recipes are separated into categories of Tapas by main ingredient, photos for many of the selections, as well as some history on the dishes.

Despite the annoying cocktail section this is still the best Tapas book I have come accross.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By megan micco on March 19, 2004
Format: Hardcover
The cesar cookbook is awesome, directed both to novices interested in learning more about tapas and to those who have more advanced skills. i love trying the great cocktails recipes, they are fresh and easy to make. the photos perfectly capture the feeling of the bar and the writing is interesting and fun to read. No wonder it was voted one of the ten best cookbooks of the year by Food and Wine Magazine!!
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14 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Peggy Vincent on July 5, 2004
Format: Hardcover
No, Alice Waters of Chez Panisse didn't write this book, but it springs from the fountain that she set flowing more than 20 years ago and continues in the fine tradition of all the cookbooks that have emerged from her little neighborhood in North Berkeley. The authors were all formerly affiliated with Chez Panisse, and it shows.
César, a tapas bar/restaurant, was an instant success. The cookbook will be, too. The only downside for some readers will be that fully one half of the book is devoted to cocktail recipes; that same feature will be a huge upside for other readers. The second half of the book is recipes for the tapas, little Spanish dishes that are meant to be ordered with drinks and shared with friends. They're not hard - I've already met with high success with 3 of the recipes, esp the artichoke recipe!!! - but many require ingredients that aren't going to be easy for someone living in East Podunk, Nebraska, to find at her local A&P. However, you can get the stuff online at [...] - or, if you're lucky enough to live 3 minutes from Berkeley as I do, visit The Spanish Table on San Pablo Ave.
This is a cookbook for the experienced cook with a sophisticated palate who wants to treat her guests to a few things they've probably never tasted before.
For the right audience, highest recommendation.
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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on March 9, 2004
Format: Hardcover
I love the book. The pages of my copy are food stained and water damaged from all the use it's getting. There are two wonderful and outstanding things about this cookbook. The recipes instruct clearly and the resulting tapas have been delicious. Very delicious. The book reads well also.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By small dog owner on November 26, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Really one of the most approachable resources for Spanish ingredients, spirits, and recipes. Beautifully and simply illustrated, this little book is a staple in our cookbook library.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Angie Chang on April 3, 2010
Format: Hardcover
As a fan of anything paraded out of Cesar's kitchen in Berkeley, we purchased the Cesar cookbook to recreate favorites at home for dinner parties. They are always a huge hit -- especially noteworthy are the recipes for poached salmon (with cilantro and cumin vinaigrette), patatas bravas, papas fritas (with cumin, garlic, and alioli), and the cumin fried chicken (with watercress and blood orange alioli). The recipes for spicy tuna salad bocadillos and manchego and greens bocadillos are very, very tasty as well. Of course, it's up to you to find your favorite dishes in this cookbook. We have a bad tendency to just walk over to Cesar for our food, rather than make it from the cookbook. But if I ever move away from the Bay Area, this cookbook will be one of the top five in my collection.
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