Customer Reviews for

Heat: An Amateur's Adventures as Kitchen Slave, Line Cook, Pasta-Maker, and Apprentice to a Dante-Quoting Butcher in Tuscany

Average Rating 4.5
( 38 )
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Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 38 Customer Reviews
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  • Posted June 21, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    fun and entertaining!

    this book was a great read! lots of behind the scenes info and hilarious stories. makes me hungry for delicious food! Mario is a fascinating character.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted April 27, 2009

    A fun read for anyone who loves food!

    I've sent this book on to all my "gourmetsky" friends.
    I found myself laughing out loud at some of the wonderful writing in here.
    If you loved "Kitchen Confidential" I'm sure you'll love this too -- maybe even more.
    EnjoY!

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted February 23, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    deliciously entertaining

    funny and obsessive about food and how it is prepared. wonderful precise writing. best, probably, for those already interested in food.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 9, 2009

    Foodie Comedy

    "Heat" is a wonderful book. The author pulls you into his life and you become so interested that you can't wait to turn the page and see what happens next for him. All the while, the book leaves you laughing out loud while providing some intersting food history and commentary on current foodie topics.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 24, 2007

    Makes Me Want To Eat!

    When I first heard about this book I knew I had to read it! Recently food has interested me more and I thought this book would be interesting for the new foodies (like me!) or the old timers that have been involved with food for a while. This book Heat by Bill Buford talks about the passion that he has about wanting to find out how to make the foods that he always has eaten but never has made or has ever thought about making. Bill Buford is a retired New Yorker writer and sporadically writes for the magazine. Soon after he left the New Yorker he decided to work his way up the kitchen food chain in Mario Batali¿s restaurant Babbo in New York City. He figures out just how hard you have to work when you are a cook/chef and must work to get to the recognition that most chefs would like to achieve. He makes and participates in many special preparations of different food such as polenta, pasta, making the perfect pasta sauce, and how to butcher meat perfectly. While learning how to make pasta he travels to Italy to learn the authentic was to prepare this dish. Not only does this book have mouth watering food descriptions but is also a book about traveling and finding the roots of old time favorite foods that everyone has eaten but has never known about where it comes from or how to prepare it. If you have any sort of interest in food or even not the slightest interest in food than I still think this book will be worth the read and will also certainly gets your mouth watering!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 8, 2007

    Succulent!

    One of my all time favorites in non-fiction funny, engaging, peopled with wild characters and superb recipes and culinary tips. A must have for any foodie! I think I'll read it again!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 10, 2006

    Hot

    This books is spectacular. A marvelous achievement. I have made a few of the 'recipes' he describes with great success. The book has one flaw I can find -- no index! I will have to reread and create my own unless that is coming in future editions. [Note to Publisher: You will sell more copies if you include an index ¿ I will definitely buy a second for myself.]

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 12, 2006

    Characters from Life: large and small

    Mario Batali may have achieved ubiquity but the characters Bill Buford recreates for us on the page are more omnipotent than Mario in their own approach to traditional Italian food. Imagine a backroom butcher in Tuscany referred to as the Maestro. Bill Buford beautifully weaves Mario¿s calling to recreate the food of Italian masters with Buford's own calling ¿ initially disguised as research to write about a rock n¿ roll chef and his kitchen. You can¿t help but wonder if Mario, as well as all the characters, read the final draft and, if so, if they would still welcome Buford into their kitchens. We are pulled in to the process of making quality, hand-touched food and anxiously await the next book. By the way, Buford, inadvertently, may have done more for the grass-fed beef movement in his wonderful to read book Heat than even Michael Pollen in The Carnivore¿s Dilemma.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 18, 2012

    Like cooking? Read it.

    This is one wild ride through a journalists obsession. What becomes clear is that anyone who takes food seriously MUST be obsessed. The skill, energy, information, creativity, and sheer number of hours required to understand anything about good food prep is overwhelming. Buford goes the whole way, and finally trains to handle meat from an old-school butchering family in Italy. The book is a fast paced, interesting trip from obsessed novice to skilled food man. Martha Stewart devotees need not pick it up, the testosterone and adventure would be too much. Have fun!

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  • Posted September 9, 2011

    Witty and inspirational

    Would read over and over

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  • Posted May 5, 2011

    I saw dario and mario

    Thus book prepared me for experiences at babbo and in panzano. It is an enthralling read.

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  • Posted October 11, 2010

    A must read for those who love to cook

    Heat tells two great stories throughout the book. The first is a biography of the great Mario Batali. The second is Bill Buford's experience after he quit his job at the New York Times to work as an apprentice at Mario's top New York restaurant Babbo. The Biography is spectacular because it lets you really get into the mind of a great chef. You discover that Batali is not the mild mannered person he appears to be on food network but instead a crazy, loud, drinking and cursing hot head Italian. The story of Batali also shows how he worked his way up from an apprentice at a pizzeria called Stuff Yer Face, to one of the most famous Italian chefs in the entire world. Buford's journey through the kitchen is interesting. He meets a wide variety of interesting chef's ranging from Elsa an aspiring pastry chef who would do anything to rank up in the kitchen, to the famous Marco Pierre White Batali's ex partner who is even crazier than he is and probably says the f word at least a thousand times in one chapter. This book is great because if you like to cook then it tells you so much information. Each chapter is loaded with information like the food revolution in San Francisco to how the New York short rib craze got started. You also meet a wide variety of characters throughout the book ranging from Dario Cechinni the crazy Dante-quoting butcher from Tuscany to Memo the gigantic Samoan sou's chef at Babbo. The best part of this book is I guarantee you will find yourself laughing out loud many times throughout. This book is also great for information I myself found many new kitchen techniques and tips that I now use when I cook. The only thing that I disliked about this book is it jumps around quite a bit and a very wide amount of characters are introduced, so read slowly and pay attention if you want to keep up. This book is one of my personal all time favorites, if you like to cook you'll love this book I guarantee it.

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  • Posted March 9, 2010

    more from this reviewer

    Great Book!

    This book is very entertaining and enlightening with behind the scenes information. I will never waste the tops of celery again, and I love Mario Batali even more than I did before. It is amazing what happens in the kitchen. I truly love this book and recommend it for anyone that loves to cook.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 2, 2008

    I was convinced this book would eventually get better

    I was immediately drawn to this book since I am a person who really enjoys cooking (for fun/relaxation) and I was curious to read about a behind the scenes looking into Batalis kitchen. Well, I tell you what, I am an avid reader and I can not get through this book! I have slugged through it on and off (reading at least 12+ books in between) since the middle of summer (its now Jan). There just isn't anything that really grabs you. A few of the lines about Buford in the kitchen are well versed, but the book on the whole was a HUGE disappointment. It did not envoke any real reaction from me and it certainly didn't make me want to eat! You are better off taking a big PASS over this one. I dont think Buford should have expanded on his James Beard Award-Winning NYT article.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 2, 2007

    Bla

    While witty it just isn't enough to sustain a book of this length. I expected to love this book and did for the first 50 pages. After that it flipped back and forth between amusing and dreadful.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 21, 2006

    What a fun guy!

    This book is the best. At times I laughed until I cried. What a talented writer! Do yourself a favor and order your copy of this book today. Be prepared to be entertained!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 7, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted September 22, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted November 21, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted December 27, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 38 Customer Reviews
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