Customer Reviews: Food Art: Garnishing Made Easy
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on June 6, 2004
John Gargone's Food Art isn't for the quick cook who wants to produce garnishes in seconds: it's for the cook who wants a variety of truly elegant food garnishes to produce from scratch, from carved vegetable art to meat and vegetable displays and more. Yes, it's easy to do - but it won't be accomplished in seconds. FOOD ART's step-by-step color photos throughout provide exceptional embellishment on the techniques and fine art of carving and making garnishes.
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on July 1, 2006
I am a caterer "wannabe" who has been doing food art for family and friends for some time and found this book to be a great launching tool for ideas. The carvings I enjoy the most are the potato flowers (very easy), tomato roses, & carrot tulips. Also, the photos of vegetable and cheese and cracker trays have been indispensible and well accepted when I imitated these in my displays. I would definitely recommend this book to both beginner and professional alike.
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on March 5, 2009
This is a very disappointing book. The garnishes are either overly elaborate and old-fashioned or suitable for a kindergarten class.
As a professional caterer I can find nothing in this book that I will use.
I also purchased Garnishing: A Feast for Your Eyes by Francis T. Lynch and this book is excellent. His chocolate roses are exquisite.
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on September 16, 2006
Not only was the book cheaper on Amazon than the bookstores but I ordered this book for my boyfriend from here and I got it earlier than expected so that was great! He says it has great step-by-step images and that's a positive for him since he learns more from visuals. Also, it has instructions that he's able to follow and understand.

We both just wish it had more "food art" in the book but, overall, it's a great book!
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on January 7, 2009
The food styling in this book is extraordinarily dated and obsessively symmetrical. The author is clearly talented and years ago these designs would have wowed the crowds at weddings, conventions and awards banquets. But that day has passed. It is as if the book made the rounds of publishers and after being rejected by many, finally, 40 years later, was accepted.

But it was too late. For our time, these designs are too formal, too contrived and just over the top. The author opens with 9 "Rules to Garnish By," but forgot to consider rule number 6 in most of his projects: "Over decorating is as bad as no decoration." "Garnish" is not the same as "garish."

The garnishes in this book appear to be directed at events, buffets and banquets. There is nothing in this book as casual as floating a tiny bundle of julienned vegetables on a cup of soup, or using sauces or colorful bits of food as background on the plate.

John Gargone is a talented food artist. While this should not be your only book on decorative food carving, it would fit well into a personal library on food decoration. Techniques don't go out of style, and if you master the detailed, photographically illustrated step-by-step instructions here, you can bring your own artistic flair and produce beautiful results.

Whatever John Gargone's talents, he was poorly served by his publisher, who did not give him good editing, good typography or good photos.

This book is not well designed. The fonts are strange. Descenders on the headings blunder into the text below. Many of the headings switch from blue to yellow to green in mid-word.

Reproduction of the photographs reminds me of 4-color food photos published in recipe books 50 years ago. But there was never an era, even then, when this photography would have been considered state of the art, or even professional. Today, with a copyright date as recent as 2004, these photos must be judged abominable.

It saddens me to write such a harsh review for the work of a well-respected, hard-working and successful chef such as John Gargone. But these reviews are written for prospective purchasers of books, not for the authors.

Instead of this book I would recommend Gourmet Garnishes by Mickey Baskett. Or better yet, search Amazon for this book's title, and consider some of the other books that show up in the search.
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on June 29, 2009
Wonderful book a must won if you are a big Caterer or a house party host. The illistrations are wonderful and knowledge at a glance. Couldn't live with out it.
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on September 9, 2013
I have been a cook for over 13 years so I already knew how to do some of this . but for those who don't know this would be a great book, I even still enjoyed it. it's a great book for new cooks with good ideas for parties.
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on August 3, 2008
This book is illustrated masterfully! The instructions are easy to follow and the pictures are outstanding. I would recommend this book to anyone wanting to learn how to make garnish or anyone needing new and fresh ideas. This book is a keeper.
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on March 7, 2005
Food Art; Garnishing Made Easy is for the cook that wants to acomplish beautiful food displays in only minutes. Food Art is a systematic approach to displaying all food products and a garnishing book. In the time spent in decorating those salads and platters an original artiscally displayed arrangement can easily be created in the same amount of time. NO more rolling deli meats or cubeing cheese by hand, get your local deli to do most of the work FREE. Food Art opens an entirely new approach to displaying food that will stimulate your imagination and astound your guests.
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on May 3, 2013
I bought this book for a friend in Israel who signed up for it on amazon gift registry. I am going to see her in a few
weeks and will take it as a surprie.
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