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French Cheeses: The Visual Guide to More Than 350 Cheeses from Every Region of France Paperback – October 1, 2000


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Product Details

  • Series: DK Handbooks
  • Paperback: 240 pages
  • Publisher: DK ADULT; Revised & updated edition (October 1, 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0789410702
  • ISBN-13: 978-0789410702
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 0.8 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (21 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #718,312 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Library Journal

The magnificent illustrations in this book are characteristic of the "Eyewitness Handbook" series: glossy color photographs, so finely reproduced that the subtlest shades of white, beige, gray, yellow and brown come alive. A complimentary foreword by the great chef Joel Robuchon concurs. Beyond the excellent visuals, however, is voluminous information on over 350 cheeses made in France. A concise introduction serves not only as a guide to interpreting each entry's economically arranged information but also to alert the reader that attention will be given to methods of production, aroma, taste, fat content, milk-type, and the ideal accompanying drinks. Included are a small glossary, a short bibliography, and even a directory of French cheese shops and markets at the end. Don't be put off by the somewhat narrow subject?here is a necessary selection for any collection with a sophisticated respect for food.?Wendy Miller, Lexington P.L., Ky.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Booklist

Although many guides to the art of fromagerie exist, none provide such visual detail and at-a-glance information as Masui and Yamada. They categorize 350 cheeses in a dictionary format, divided by regions of production, and add succinct sidebars about manufacturing processes and the definition of specific terms (i.e., the distinction between artisanal and industriel), generally enlightening even the most blaseof cheese buyers. Like many California wine, few of the cheeses produced in limited quantities even leave the country, so the compilation here yields many surprises. There is a massive amount of reference data to be consumed and savored piece by piece. A glossary and a list of producers, shops, and markets are appended. Sharp color photography by Yohei Maruyama. Barbara Jacobs --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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See all 21 customer reviews
It is the most wonderful and comprehensive book for cheese lovers and foodies.
Lilo Werner
Shows cheeses at different ages which is one of the most interesting points and makes this very unique as a reference book.
L. Justin Novello
A must own for the French cheese lover....especially those living in or traveling to France.
coffeygirl

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

28 of 29 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on July 2, 1999
Format: Paperback
As a professional cheesemonger, I find this book indispensable. Although the layout can be a bit confusing, and the index is rife with inaccurate page numbers, the content is so strong that I highly recommend it to other professionals and food aficionados. One excellent point that is made several places in the book is that cheese can be enjoyed at different stages of maturity. In fact, the captions under photographs of cheese will often comment on how long the cheese was matured, or better yet, how it compares to what is usually eaten by the locals.
Careful recommendations are made for pairing the cheeses with French wines, which is always helpful.
I return to this book time and time again, either for reference, or to ferret out the minutae that dwell in every entry.
If only we had a reference of this quality for all the traditional foods of the world!
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22 of 25 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 4, 1999
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
If you know something about French Cheese, and don't mind poring through the whole book to search out generic information, such as the basic cheesemaking processes, you will find this book rewarding. If you are looking for an introduction and recommendations for where to start, this book won't help. The photos are beautiful, and the desriptions of the individual cheeses are very authoritative and complete. But, the bewildering array of cheeses in this book will not help you much as you stand before the cheese counter in the better French supermarkets or your favorite fromagerie trying to choose which of the 500 or so cheeses to eat with today's meals.
After living in France for three months, I now can appreciate what this book offers. But, in addition to the "field guide" type of descriptions, I would have appreciated some help in learning how to buy and store cheese (such as why the softer cheeses should be stored on a bed of straw in the shops).
There are delightful snippets of information included, or should I say buried, throughout the book, and the photos are truly wonderful. But, for anyone getting started, I would choose a book such as "Cheese Primer" by Steven Jenkins.
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21 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Dianne Foster HALL OF FAME on July 28, 2001
Format: Hardcover
When I was a child and the milk soured, my ever-frugal mother would set it aside in a bowl and allow it to continue it's transformation into something wild and strange. When the curds and the whey separated, she would pour the contents into a cheese cloth stretched across a strainer and then gather and lift the cloth and squeeze the exess fluid from the curds. We ate the cheese as is...a form of "cottage" cheese I suppose. I was reminded of this when I read FRENCH CHEESES from Eyewitness Handbooks which contains a short history of cheese-making in the front section of the book.
I like this book, and since I am not a cheese expert, I cannot say whether it will make one an expert or not, but it has enlightened me a bit as I continue to experiment with the various kinds of cheeses available in the gourmet section of the grocery stores and the delicatesson in our neighborhood.
I have eaten various cheeses in Paris and other parts of Europe, and thought them better than anything I can buy in the States though I have eaten "fancy" cheeses in some upscale restaurants. I realize the French and others use unpasturized or raw milk in many of their cheeses and the U.S. frowns on the use of untreated milk so perhaps this is a factor. CHEESES identifies cooked versus raw versions.
However, many of the cheeses in this book are not found in U.S. stores because a limited supply exists and/or the product is consumed or sold locally. Generally these are artisanal cheeses (made by hand). CHEESES includes a map showing the farm areas of France and each cheese entry pinpoints the geographic location of the product. You can match the map with the cheese of interest to you and perhaps search for it on your next excursion to the French countryside. In the meantime, the list of producers in the appendix may prove helpful.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 17, 1998
Format: Hardcover
My husband and I are Americans living in the south of France for one year. Don't go to live in France without taking this book. This is a beautiful book. It is an encyclopedia of French cheeses. The pictures and the details are superb. It is informative, entertaining and full of cheese facts that even the French people don't know about. You will be able to tell your French friends and the Fromagere more about their cheeses than they want to know. We have left them stunned with our knowledge of cheeses. They just eat the cheeses. They don't read about them.
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Renaaah on June 4, 2004
Format: Paperback
Living in France, I am always making the acquaintance of cheeses I had never before known existed. I always scurry to find this book, and look up the tasty morcel I've just consumed. It's great for learning the basics about various cheeses -- and, as noted by other reviewers -- the photos are divine, but it's not the sort of book one takes into the bath to pore over for hours at a time. Put it on your shelf next to your dictionary and thesaurus; it's that useful!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Lilo Werner on July 17, 2008
Format: Paperback
We read this book in our friends' apartment in Paris. It is the most wonderful and comprehensive book for cheese lovers and foodies. Looked through many book stores in Paris and were told it is out of print.
Most spectacular find at Amazon. Thanks.
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