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The Fort Cookbook: New Foods of the Old West from the Famous Denver Restaurant Hardcover – October 15, 1997


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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Mix a little theme-park flavor with a taste for the history of the Old West, add a hearty appetite and the yen to cook, and you might come close to The Fort--after 40 years of business, more a Denver institution than a restaurant. It was Samuel P. Arnold who first built his home as a replica of Fort Bent, a Colorado fur-trading post, circa 1840. And it was Sam Arnold who invited the public to share his enthusiasm for a time long gone but not forgotten. The Fort Cookbook tells the whole amazing story, dishing up some of the restaurant's more memorable recipes. The meat recipes (elk, venison, buffalo, lamb, and loads of beef) are alone worth the purchase price, but don't think for a minute that Arnold focuses on historic relics that taste as though they might best be left in a museum. He's a man with a modern palate, an eye on Southwestern cuisine as it has developed over the last 20 years, and the good sense to take any and all modern ingredients into account.

From Library Journal

The author of this unusual, fascinating book is now well known as a food historian, and his restaurant just southwest of Denver has been thriving for 30 years, but he became a chef/restaurateur almost inadvertently. In the early 1960s, Arnold and his wife set out to build a re-creation of a 19th-century adobe-brick fort/trading post. But when it became too expensive to construct as their home, they made it into a 300-seat restaurant, too. After a disastrous beginning, The Fort has become its own landmark, and Arnold is now an authority on authentic Western food and regional history, with two other cookbooks to his name. The recipes here include lots of red meat, including buffalo, but there are also intriguing fish and game dishes (most chapters offer a selection "For the More Adventurous Palate") and a wide range of vegetables as well. And Arnold's text, ranging from the question of what to feed a tamed bear to more mundane matters such as the history of chiles, makes very entertaining reading. For most collections.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; 1st edition (October 15, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060175672
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060175672
  • Product Dimensions: 10.5 x 7.7 x 1.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,617,552 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
5 star
78%
4 star
11%
3 star
11%
2 star
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See all 9 customer reviews
It has fascinating recipes, good stories to go with it and some history.
Laura M. Frey
Can't wait until my travels bring me back to Denver, so I can try the real McCoy!
Old Gringo
Do not let Texans tell you that chili con carne does not have tomatoes in it.
Anita Gelbart

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on October 9, 1998
Format: Hardcover
This book works for food like Claire McCardell worked for American sportswear; mix and match, it all makes you look good, and it's not tough to pull together. Good value, spices up the dinner options easily, will impress your friends and in-laws enormously. It's enhanced by the stories that the author weaves through it, making it so much more than just a cookbook -- more of a picaresque tale of "How I Ended Up Running A Restaurant When All I Really Wanted Was A Good Sportscar." Highly recommended.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Old Gringo on August 31, 2001
Format: Hardcover
While it is true that some ingredients require a little effort to find, the Fort Cookbook is a tremendously entertaining, historically illuminating and just-plain-fun cookbook. I have made several recipes from it, and have encountered good results. BTW, some hard-to-find items may be found at Homebrew stores ("sour salt" aka citric acid, juniper berries, etc.)
Can't wait until my travels bring me back to Denver, so I can try the real McCoy!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Laura M. Frey on January 7, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The cookbook is very interesting. It does have quite a few gamey recipes that I will never use - but I knew that going into the purchase, as I borrowed it from the library first -- I knew exactly what I was getting. It has fascinating recipes, good stories to go with it and some history. Anyone who is a cookbook collector would appreciate the book! Going through the book just makes me want to go to the local Fort Restaurant even more!
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By ccdmonkbiz@aol.com on April 29, 1999
Format: Hardcover
This is a cookbook that has already become a family treasure and my mom and I have an extensive collection of many different kinds of cookbooks. Needless to say, a cookbook that gives you history of the area that their restaurant is located, plus the history behind all of the fascinating recipes that are in store for the reader/cook is a real gem to own. Two finger lickin' thumbs up.
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By rcadenv on September 17, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I've had a copy of the cookbook that I bought through Amazon for a couple of years. This copy was bought as a gift for a friend who lives in the east. I thought she would enjoy having some western and southwestern style recipes... and I was right. Out of print, but there are used dealers on Amazon who have new copies at a good price.
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