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Secondly, the book is a long overdue portrait of the real Mario Batali and of the real Marco Pierre White--two complicated and brilliant chefs whose coverage in the press--while appropriately fawning--has never described them in their fully debauched, delightful glory. Buford has--for the first time--managed to explain White's peculiar--almost freakish brilliance--while humanizing a man known for terrorizing cooks, customers (and Batali). As for Mario--he is finally revealed for the Falstaffian, larger than life, mercurial, frighteningly intelligent chef/enterpreneur he really is. No small accomplishment. Other cooks, chefs, butchers, artisans and restaurant lifers are described with similar insight.
Thirdly, Heat reveals a dead-on understanding--rare among non-chef writers--of the pleasures of "making" food; the real human cost, the real requirements and the real adrenelin-rush-inducing pleasures of cranking out hundreds of high quality meals. One is left with a truly unique appreciation of not only what is truly good about food--but as importantly, who cooks--and why. I can't think of another book which takes such an unsparing, uncompromising and ultimately thrilling look at the quest for culinary excellence. Heat brims with fascinating observations on cooking, incredible characters, useful discourse and argument-ending arcania. I read my copy and immediately started reading it again. It's going right in between Orwell's Down and Out in Paris and London and Zola's The Belly of Paris on my bookshelf. --Anthony Bourdain
Great insights into rural Italy where food is an integral part of daily life.
This book chronicles a journalist's experience becoming a kitchen apprentice and line cook in Mario Batali's famous New York Restaurant.
I highly recommend this book for anyone who likes to read about food, cooking, and great characters.
Awesome book! Such a great take on restaurant cooking and kitchens. I read a lot of food biographies and this is one of my favorites. Read morePublished 11 days ago by Kanne
After reading Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain, I purchased this book as a compliment. Just as good with much less foul language.Published 13 days ago by Stephen W Johnson
Imagine being able to just immerse yourself in something you are interested in but have no professional knowledge of as an adult. Read morePublished 27 days ago by Alan Derrick
this became my favorite book of the season. it is so well written and fascinating if you are at all interested in food or travel. Read morePublished 28 days ago by catsim
Great read about life in Mario Batali's kitchen at Babbo in the 90's and the authors trip to Tuscany to intern under Dario Cecchini, one of the world's greatest butchers. Read morePublished 29 days ago by Glenn Poirier
Fabulously hysterical, and informative. Also a GREAT read. If you like the kitchen, and you have a strong sense of humor, get this book.Published 29 days ago by Karen Mclean
Very entertaining view of the restaurant world - fun to learn about what its like back in the kitchen without actually having to do it myself...Published 2 months ago by cjbowden
It gives entertaining insight into the kitchen, stories of the journey of knowledge and experience to get to a place of respect in the restaurant scene, and throws in some advice... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Andrew
Very enjoyable read about Bill's adventures in the world of Italian food, from the "materia prima" (basic ingredients) to the (famous) restaurant table. Read morePublished 2 months ago by Paula Rossano