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Coquilles, Calva, and Crème: Exploring France's Culinary Heritage: A Love Affair with Real French Food Hardcover – June 1, 2012
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I have had the incredible good luck to have eaten dozens and dozens of French meals with Gerry Dryansky, and he was never wrong. I mean, never. We would travel down some little street, to some little restaurant, and then: delight, pure pleasure. There’s nobody I know, in Paris or New York, who understands French food the way Gerry does. And surely nobody who writes about it as well as he does. (Alan Furst, author of Mission to Paris and the bestselling Spies in the Balkans)
A delicious and delightful read, especially for those who think they might know this country. When you sit down to a meal with Dryansky, you taste the very soul of France. (Eleanor Beardsley, France Correspondent, National Public Radio)
An appetizing, evocative, eccentric paean to Gallic gastronomy. A richly textured memoir. (Colman Andrews - The Wall Street Journal)
Find an escape to a better world in Coquilles, Calva & Creme. A book to dream over. (Michael Dirda, Pulitzer Prize Winner - The Washington Post)
Tuck this delicious tome in your hamper between Proust’s madeleines and the champagne―then feast your soul. The Dryanskys remind us that in France – at least sometimes and in some places – authenticity still rhymes with simplicity, and great writing makes a fine relish. (David Downie, author of Paris, Paris: Journey into the City of Lights and the Terroir food series)
French food and travel with a dash of history―what a treat it is to sit at the table with this smart, engaging writer. A delicious read from start to finish. (Barbara Fairchild, winner of the James Beard Award, bestselling food writer and longtime editor of Bon Apétit)
Congratulations to Dryansky. It was a great pleasure to read his text, both so well documented and free of polemics. (Christian Millau, co-founder of Le Guide GaultMillau, herald and godfather of “La Nouvelle Cuisine”)
Coquilles, Calva, and Creme vividly brings back my years of working in Paris in the 1950s. When I contemplate my cooking journey of the last half century, from classic to nouvelle, from fusion to modern American to molecular, the only reminiscences I have is of food that touches my soul or makes me salivate. Gerry Dryansky writes honestly and eloquently about these simple, honest, essential dishes in his engaging, compelling, and delicious memoir. (Jacques Pépin, winner of the James Beard Award)
Part memoir, part travelogue, Coquilles, Calva & Creme is a hymn to French food and wine and the joy of wining and dining in France with "convivialité" - which for the French is key. Dryansky has many a story to tell about the past (lunching with the likes of Coco and Yves) but in this present tour de France he greets each dining experience, each new chef, each new winemaker, and each new region, from Alsace to Le Massif Central, with genuine curiosity, an open mind, and a discerning first rate palate. This entertaining, erudite, and elegant book is a must for Francophiles and food lovers everywhere. (Harriet Welty Rochefort, bestselling author of French Toast, French Fried and the forthcoming Joie de Vivre)
About the Author
Joanne Dryansky is the wife of Gerry Dryansky, the senior European correspondent for Condé Nast Traveler. Joanne and Gerry moved to Paris and write screenplays and fiction together. Their recent novel Fatima's Good Fortune, after being published in the United States and worldwide, is going to the screen.
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Top Customer Reviews
By their account, French culinary arts are in the process of turning from worshipping sophisticated "trophy" cuisine, with its "shaky claim to art," and returning to the roots of French regional cooking. Amongst the trophies, the accent is on creativity at all costs. As if they had read too much Ezra Pound, whatever these high-profile chefs confect, they must "make it new." A new generation of chefs, however, are returning to la cuisine traditionelle where, as in wine, terroir is everything: the taste of the land as expressed in what it produces. Terroirists they apparently call themselves, throwing down the gauntlet. Culinary perfection from this point of view is achieved when "things are allowed to taste of what they are." The Dryanskys borrow our term "soul food" to describe this effort "to perpetuate rituals of attachment that go back to the Middle Ages." This is the French cuisine that won Alice Waters' heart as a student in France and has made such a difference in our own return to "slow food.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Beautifully written culinary travelogue, with mouth watering descriptions and recipes for simple French foods prepared by folks who cook for the love of it. Read morePublished 18 months ago by Ira Friedman
Very boring, and full of name dropping, to the point you wonder if these things really happened, or if the author's inventing his memories.
I bought this on Audible. Read more
This book is for those "foodies" who lament the loss of true French cuisine. It travels with Mr. Read morePublished 21 months ago by Tony Pug
vaguely interesting food memoir of french cuisine. engaging and readable but nothing extraordinary.
some good historical and cultural info and photographs.
I was expecting an exploration of French cuisine and what I got was a gossipy self-centered litany of all the irrelevant people this guy had a meal with or adjacent to a meal. Read morePublished on August 12, 2013 by Diane Wolfe
It is interesting and informative to me, a food writer, to read the point of view by an American food writer living in France. Read morePublished on May 28, 2013 by Ms.. Pat in NH
That Gerry and Joanne Dryansky are writers is obvious from the beginning. As one gets further into the book it becomes apparent that they are outstanding writers. Read morePublished on May 11, 2013 by P. Zimmer
While a deep and extensive knowledge of the history and current status of French cuisine is the heart of this splendid book, these masters of the written word also set the table of... Read morePublished on December 27, 2012 by Tony Sypep
This is a wonderful memoir/ culinary travelogue. Anyone interested in France, its food and its people would be well-served to travel with Dryansky's book in handPublished on July 20, 2012 by John L.