Jackie's Reviews > American Terroir: Savoring the Flavors of Our Woods, Waters, and Fields

American Terroir by Rowan Jacobsen
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's review
Sep 18, 10

bookshelves: 5-star, cooking-crafting, pleasure-reading, work-review-related-reading
Read in September, 2010

It will help you to know that "terroir" is basically "taste of place"--the unique qualities a place gives the food that grows up there. Sometimes it's mineral in the soil, sometimes it's the surrounding flora and fauna, sometimes we just don't know.
But it's noticeable, and BEING noticed by more and more people these days. It used to be a wine thing, but has now expanded to a far greater gastric range.

I got sucked in immediately, and savored every single page of this engaging, tantalizing, magical menu of culinary adventures (yes, there are recipes included). I now know that
my life will never be complete if I don't go try some high mountain maple syrup while standing in the steamy evaporation shack, sweating in my flannel shirt. Or squish through the strange Totten oyster farm in Puget Sound at 3 am, when the tide is low. Or tromp through the fields of Quebec for cattails that Francois des Bois (Francis of the Forest) will show me how to cook and eat. Really, pretty much visiting anyone that Jacobsen interviewed and worked with for this book would be a delight. I was ecstatic to realize that I have actually tasted Taza chocolate (we sell them at work), though I was thrown off my it's texture until I read their part in
this book and now understand that what I was tasting was hundreds of years of history.

This is a fantastic read that will leave you drooling for the food and searching for anything and everything that Jacobsen has ever written (thankful, he does have other books). And, of course, wistfully scheming a way to visit those same places too. (sigh)
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