White Truffles in Winter
“Rich in sensory delights . . . the kind of masterpiece readers will want to savor.”—Minneapolis Star-Tribune
Auguste Escoffier (1846–1935) was the unparalleled French chef whose impact on restaurants and high cuisine is still with us. He was also a complicated man—kind yet imperious, food obsessed yet rarely hungry, capable of great passion and inscrutable reserve. In this...more
For those with culinary interests, there are intriguing food tidbits, but the story can be enjoyed by ...more
There were all sorts of imagery that were beautiful (description of an Impressionist exhibit), but I just couldn't believe anything happening in the book would really happen. T ...more
As the novel opens he and his wife, poet Delphine Daffis, are in their eighties, living out their penurious senescence in Monte Carlo, Monaco, with a rotating cast of children and grandchildren a ...more
This is the story of the great French chef, Escoffier, and his life and loves, told in ...more
I found this book thoroughly enjoyable to read. I have always found the culinary arts to be interesting, and think it can be fascinating the way in which throughout time food has been used within literature. One of the things which I really enjoyed about this book is the way in which throughout from beginning to end food is used to convey a story, to inspire emotions and evoke all of the ...more
A fictionalized life of Auguste Escoffier - the chef who set the stage for how we dine today in courses. The story is set primarily when he and his wife are approaching death and her greatest wish is that he create a recipe for her, like he has done for so many others - including many for his lifetime lover, Sarah Bernhardt. The book moves back and forth between the past and the end of Escoffier's life, telling the story of his tumultous loves, his passion for food and cooking, and his career i ...more
Historical figures played a prominent role in the story yet it remained fiction. I enjoyed the eccentric nature of Sarah and the chef's dedication to h ...more
I would recommend this book in a heartbeat. It is a book that will stay with me forever.
I am ashamed to admit I did not even realize Escoffier was a real person until more than halfway through the book.
This book was something I never would have picked myself but that is the beauty of a book club- reading outside my ...more
Part of my problem is due to a personal sensitivity. I almost cannot bear stories of ...more
Escoffier is a passionate chef who loves everything about food preparation down to lovingly caring for the tools of his craft. This passion, at times, overcomes everythin ...more
Auguste Escoffier once the King of Chefs and Chef of Kings was a passionate romantic, obsessed with the the 5th taste - deliciousness - and beautiful women. As his poetess wife of 55+ years, Delphine Daffis Escoffier, is in her death bed, Auguste reminisces about his life, his delectable inventions and his lover Sarah Bernhardt the beautiful, scandalous actress. Seen thr ...more
Escoffier's love of his wife was legendary, but not as well known as his powerful love for the great actress of the time Sarah Bernhardt. This novel takes place from around the late 1800's to Escoffier's death in 1920.
Kelby's novel is rich with pow ...more
On the upside Auguste, Delphine, and Sarah had distinct points of view and voice. The recipes added luscious depth to characters and circumstances. Sometimes the dialog and narration was cohesive and captivating, especially for the final third of the book.
Too many times the weight of situation was treated with allusions, as in the suicide of Xavier. Ofte ...more
In lush sensual prose she describes Escoffier's obsession with food and his ability for great passion. She tells of his time as a cook in the Franco-Prussian War, as master chef in restaurants in both Paris and London, and as a close friend to nobility and world leade ...more
Historically the facts behind the book are true. Auguste Escoffier was a historical character responsible for much of what we would recognise about the modern restaurant experience. His recipes do indeed include many we would recognise today as absolute classics; such as two created for Dame Nellie Melba- the Peach Melb ...more
The descriptions throughout, particularly of the incredible dishes, were rich and complex. The food was brought to life and and as a reader my senses were awakened to the inventiveness and imagination of such a groundbreaking chef.
Despite this incredible attention to detail and description, the novel flowed and the characters were well develop ...more
The cooking and food mentioned in the book were its only saving grace. I love to cook. I could feel my hunger as Sabine ate the langoustines in the stairwell, and licked her fingers clean. By the end of the book I realized t ...more
As far as I can tell, the facts of Escoffier's life are there. Perhaps his private life is embroidered a bit,
but it is a novel after all. A very entertaining read, especially if you are a foodie like me.
However living as I do in a land where the ingredients he uses do not exist (except for eggs, cream and parsley), I was frustrated at the sensuous descriptions of the dishes.
If you like to cook--if you like to eat well, this easy read can be ...more