The Saucier’s Apprentice: One Long Strange Trip Through the Great Cooking Schools of Europe

Bob Spitz, Author . Norton $24.95 (323p) ISBN 978-0-393-06059-1

When Spitz ( The Beatles ) finds himself at a convergence of personal and professional crossroads, he finally decides to take a long anticipated trip to Europe to learn to cook, with an itinerary of placements across France and Italy that he hopes will bring a sense of soul into an earnest but uneducated attraction to braises and sautés. The trip begins with Spitz as the first and only trial client of the Robert Ash Cookery School in southern Burgundy, an experience that proves positive. With a soufflé, he saves the honor of the stern taskmistress at one school and he perfects his quenelles at another in Cannes. Although Spitz pins his culinary adventure to a personal story arc involving his on-again-off-again relationship with a woman in New York, this mixed grill of a book isn’t quite as entertaining as it might have been. The author works hard at being earnest and honest about his personal shortcomings as well as his culinary misadventures, but one frequently gets the sense that he was more focused on cooking than life experience. With recipes and b&w photos. (May)

Reviewed on: 03/10/2008
Release date: 05/01/2008
Genre: Nonfiction
Paperback - 323 pages - 978-0-393-33538-5
Open Ebook - 336 pages - 978-0-393-11399-0
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