Barolo
  • Barolo
  • Barolo

Barolo

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by Matthew Gavin Frank
     
 

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After a childhood of microwaved meat and saturated fat, Matthew Gavin Frank got serious about food. His “research” ultimately led him to Barolo, Italy (pop. 646), where, living out of a tent in the garden of a local farmhouse, he resolved to learn about Italian food from the ground up. Barolo is Frank’s account of those six…  See more details below

Overview


After a childhood of microwaved meat and saturated fat, Matthew Gavin Frank got serious about food. His “research” ultimately led him to Barolo, Italy (pop. 646), where, living out of a tent in the garden of a local farmhouse, he resolved to learn about Italian food from the ground up. Barolo is Frank’s account of those six months.
 
At once an intimate travelogue and a memoir of a culinary education, the book details the adventures of a not-so-innocent abroad in Barolo, a region known for its food and wine (also called Barolo). Upon arrival, Frank began picking wine grapes for famed vintner Luciano Sandrone. He tells how, between lessons in the art of the grape harvest, he discovered, explored, and savored the gustatory riches of Piemontese Italy. Along the way we meet the region’s families and the many eccentric vintners, butchers, bakers, and restaurateurs who call Barolo home. Rich with details of real Italian small-town life, local foodstuffs, strange markets, and a circuslike atmosphere, Frank’s story also offers a wealth of historical and culinary information, moments of flamboyance, and musings on foreign travel (and its many alien seductions), all filtered through food and wine.
 

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Editorial Reviews

Napaman.com

"One swig of this book, and you're hooked."—Napaman.com
Wine Spectator - Thomas Matthews

"A misfit in America, an unhappy cook in a series of second-rate restaurants, Frank seizes a chance to escape into a better world. We never learn how he first met Rafaella, or convinced her to let him pitch a tent behind Il Gioco dell'Oca, her bed-and-breakfast near Barolo. But there he is, struggling with minimal Italian, working the grape harvest with Luciano Sandrone, plunging headfirst into a world of mysterious, overwhelming sensations."—Thomas Matthews, Wine Spectator
Gastronomica - Amy Sherman

"This is pleasure not just in the subject of Barolo, but also in Frank's writing. A master of the unexpected metaphor, Frank commands prose that is lively and original; he never resorts to cliché."—Amy Sherman, Gastronomica
Charlie Trotter

“Aaahhh . . . ! Here are all the joys of being young and exuberant and passionate and in love with women, and life, and better yet . . . in Barolo. This remarkable and enchanting tale makes me want to set the clock back many years and to book passage to Italy and to the sips of the world’s greatest wine, and to be inspired by all the things that make life such a wonderful journey! Kudos to Matthew Gavin Frank for reminding us what really makes life worth living!”—Charlie Trotter, chef, author, and host of PBS’s Kitchen Sessions with Charlie Trotter
Gale Gand

“If you love red wine, you’ll love this book. And it’s just as hard to put down this book as it is a glass of good red. This irresistible story takes you to the real Italy and its rich fragrant wine region where Barolo is made. I want to live in this book forever.”—Gale Gand, executive pastry chef and partner of Tru in Chicago and host of the Food Network’s Sweet Dreams
Lee Gutkind

“Suddenly you are in Italy, suddenly you are in love, suddenly you are picking the delicate Nebbiolo grape under a burning sun—and in a moment Matthew Gavin Frank has captured your unwavering attention, with a firm grasp that continues for all three hundred pages of this delightful and incisive book.”—Lee Gutkind, editor of Creative Nonfiction magazine and author of Almost Human: Making Robots Think
Wine Spectator

"A misfit in America, an unhappy cook in a series of second-rate restaurants, Frank seizes a chance to escape into a better world. We never learn how he first met Rafaella, or convinced her to let him pitch a tent behind Il Gioco dell'Oca, her bed-and-breakfast near Barolo. But there he is, struggling with minimal Italian, working the grape harvest with Luciano Sandrone, plunging headfirst into a world of mysterious, overwhelming sensations."—Thomas Matthews, Wine Spectator

— Thomas Matthews

Rick Tramonto
"Matthew Gavin Frank captures all the warmth and charm of Barolo, with mouthwatering stories about a journey through wine and food. A great read to fill any food and wine lover's stomach."

-Rick Tramonto, chef and owner of Tru in Chicago and the author of Tru: A Cookbook from the Legendary Chicago Restaurant

Gastronomica

"This is pleasure not just in the subject of Barolo, but also in Frank's writing. A master of the unexpected metaphor, Frank commands prose that is lively and original; he never resorts to cliché."—Amy Sherman, Gastronomica

— Amy Sherman

Belinda Chang
"In his memoir, Matthew Gavin Frank has truly captured the essence of this enticing region of Italy through his evocative descriptions of the landscape, the cuisine, the local characters, and his multifaceted experience with the Nebbiolo grape. This book transported me right back to Piemonte; wherever you are, as you read, you will start to smell the tartufo, the vineyards, the salumi, and of course the red wines of Barolo!"

-Belinda Chang, wine director at The Modern in New York City

Graham Elliott Bowles
"Matthew Gavin Frank gives us a witty account of his experiences roaming the Italian countryside in search of food, wine, and life's true meaning. His vivid descriptions, historical references, and voracious appetite combine to leave the reader thirsty for the next page, and hungry for the next literary morsel. I loved reading this. Buon appetito!"

-Graham Elliot Bowles, chef and owner of Graham Elliott in Chicago

Booklist

“Besides conveying the sensuality of the place, Frank offers insight into the region’s history.”—Booklist

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780803226746
Publisher:
University of Nebraska Press
Publication date:
04/01/2010
Series:
At Table
Pages:
224
Product dimensions:
5.80(w) x 8.60(h) x 1.00(d)

Meet the Author


Matthew Gavin Frank worked for over fifteen years in the food and restaurant industry in positions ranging from dishwasher to sous-chef, server to sommelier, menu consultant to catering-business owner, farmhand to janitor. An assistant professor of creative writing at Northern Michigan University, he has published essays in Gastronomica, Creative Nonfiction, and Best Food Writing 2006 and is the author of Pot Farm (Nebraska, 2012).

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Barolo 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Barolo takes you on a sensuous journey to Italy and makes you want to travel there again. If you have not enjoyed the countryside before, you will long to go. The visual images that are created and the people you meet truly come to life. Pop the cork on a good bottle of wine, sink into a comfortable chair, and begin reading. You will not be disappointed.