Between Bites: Memoirs of a Hungry Hedonist


Great food and stimulating prose come together in this provocative insider's memoir of a life driven by a passion for fine cuisine and the good life. With a Southerner's knack for storytelling, acclaimed writer and former Town & Country food and wine editor James Villas delivers a delectable tale of his personal and professional odyssey in Between Bites: Memoirs of a Hungry Hedonist. At the same time, he provides an exclusive peek at the intrigue behind the vibrant ...
See more details below
Available through our Marketplace sellers.
Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (23) from $1.99   
  • New (5) from $3.29   
  • Used (18) from $1.99   
Sort by
Page 1 of 1
Showing All
Note: Marketplace items are not eligible for any coupons and promotions
Seller since 2015

Feedback rating:



New — never opened or used in original packaging.

Like New — packaging may have been opened. A "Like New" item is suitable to give as a gift.

Very Good — may have minor signs of wear on packaging but item works perfectly and has no damage.

Good — item is in good condition but packaging may have signs of shelf wear/aging or torn packaging. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Acceptable — item is in working order but may show signs of wear such as scratches or torn packaging. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Used — An item that has been opened and may show signs of wear. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Refurbished — A used item that has been renewed or updated and verified to be in proper working condition. Not necessarily completed by the original manufacturer.

Ships same day as ordered. Brand new.

Ships from: Lansing, KS

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
Seller since 2010

Feedback rating:


Condition: New

Ships from: fossil, OR

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
Seller since 2015

Feedback rating:


Condition: New
Excellent Condition! No Remainder Mark, No Damage, 100% satisfaction guaranteed. Ship twice daily.

Ships from: Plano, TX

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
Seller since 2005

Feedback rating:


Condition: New

Ships from: Fort Worth, TX

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • International
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
Seller since 2008

Feedback rating:


Condition: New

Ships from: Chicago, IL

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
Page 1 of 1
Showing All
Sort by
Sending request ...


Great food and stimulating prose come together in this provocative insider's memoir of a life driven by a passion for fine cuisine and the good life. With a Southerner's knack for storytelling, acclaimed writer and former Town & Country food and wine editor James Villas delivers a delectable tale of his personal and professional odyssey in Between Bites: Memoirs of a Hungry Hedonist. At the same time, he provides an exclusive peek at the intrigue behind the vibrant gastronomic evolution of food in America over the past forty years.

Working undercover as a captain at the five-star Le Perroquet in Chicago; dining in Paris with the cookbook author Paula Wolfert in an off-beat bistro inexplicably swarming with dozens of dachshunds; succumbing to last night's bad oysters in the middle of an interview with the celebrated writer M.F.K. Fisher, only to be resuscitated by her homemade milk toast and soda: these and other anecdotes color the amazing story of Villas's career in the fickle culinary world. By turns witty and poignant, sometimes controversial and irreverent, always candid and opinionated, this compelling narrative pinpoints the exploits of a personal journey filled with a lively cast of fellow food lovers and the memorable meals and adventures shared with them. James Beard, Julia Child, Craig Claiborne, Paul Bocuse, Jeremiah Tower, Ella Brennan -- they are all here, along with many others who have contributed to the rich texture and flavor of Villas's colorful life.

In between the "bites" of his story, Villas shares a selection of favorite recipes as well as a captivating collection of personal photos, journal notes, and other memorabilia. With outspoken revelations about the best and worst of all things gastronomic, Villas celebrates his own rebellious values while commenting freely on the foibles of contemporary chefs, restaurateurs, and the eating public. One of those rare writers who entertains and inspires even at his most outrageous, Villas joins the ranks of other visionaries who have stepped beyond the culinary world into the cultural mainstream with delightful, engaging results.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
The Barnes & Noble Review
James Villas's North Carolina daddy was fond of saying, "Listen, I've been to the circus and seen the elephant" -- meaning he had taken in the big show and absorbed a bit of wisdom.

Like father, like son: Over the past 40 years, Villas has enjoyed his time at the circus, seeing the culinary revolution up close and personal in his role as gadfly food journalist, gay blade, and for 27 years food editor at Town & Country and contributor to Esquire and Gourmet.

This memoir covers it all, and he packs it with a few recipes and many funny, good stories. Take the time he was sent to interview M.F.K. Fisher for Bon Appétit. It was to be the first time a national magazine would profile this now-legendary writer. Villas flew to San Francisco, ate some oysters for dinner, and arrived at Fisher's home in Glen Ellen the next day sick as a dog. Fisher calmly instructed him in the proper way to vomit (!) and later fed him milk toast and real Coca-Cola made with syrup from the drugstore. While Villas moaned and recovered on the sofa, Fisher turned on his tape recorder and for the next hour made up interview questions that she proceeded to answer.

Then there's the time he had to rescue Craig Claiborne from jail (drunk driving again), and the times he took James Beard out after a good dinner for a tour of the gay bars to look at the pretty boys. He once ate pot-au-feu with Salvador Dalí and his pet ocelot, shared a good bistro meal with Paula Wolfert and a crowd of dachshunds in Paris, and argued with Tennessee Williams at Antoine's in New Orleans about the proper way to make shrimp rémoulade.

In between these very amusing and gossipy stories shines the zeal of an extraordinary journalist, determined to track down the origins of tiramisù, prove the merits of Kansas City beef (and American regional food in general) to the editor of Esquire, or go undercover as a captain at a famous, upscale restaurant in Chicago. It's a delicious read.

Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780471214205
  • Publisher: Wiley, John & Sons, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 4/5/2002
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 6.25 (w) x 9.25 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

JAMES VILLAS was the food and wine editor of Town & Country magazine for 27 years.
His work has also appeared in Esquire, Food & Wine, Gourmet, Bon Appétit, The New York Times, and many other publications. A recipient of the James Beard Award, Villas is the author of more than ten cookbooks and books on food, including two that have been included in Food & Wine’s annual "Best of the Best."

Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

Preface: I've Seen the Elephant 1
Chapter 1 From Grits to Gaul 7
Chapter 2 Hungry for New Horizons 43
Chapter 3 Learning to Break the Rules 65
Chapter 4 Lost in Puff Pastry 93
Chapter 5 Born to Serve 107
Chapter 6 How to Tame a Wolf 125
Chapter 7 An Appetite for Risk 135
Chapter 8 Never Enough Caviar 153
Chapter 9 My Master Class 173
Chapter 10 One Chromosome Away from Happiness 189
Chapter 11 Bocuse and Me 205
Chapter 12 Dubious Lessons from a Hired Belly 217
Chapter 13 Feasting with Giants 237
Chapter 14 In the End is the Beginning 257
Epilogue: An Optimistic Rebel 275
Acknowledgments 283
Index 285
Read More Show Less

First Chapter

Between Bites

Memoirs of a Hungry Hedonist
By James Villas

John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 0-471-21420-5

Chapter One


It is a pleasure to inform you ..." began the official letter dated April 10, 1961, from the Department of State in Washington.

Without even taking time to finish reading the sentence, I whooped right there in the middle of the Chapel Hill post office, waving the sheet of paper excitedly in the air like a twenty-two-year-old lunatic as a dignified man checking his postal box close by turned and glared at me.

"I have a Fulbright!" I shrieked uncontrollably. "I've got a Fulbright grant! I'm going to France!"

Finally smiling, the much older stranger quickly began tucking his mail into the sort of shabby leather briefcase that so many professors at the university carried. "Congratulations," he then muttered before heading for the door and leaving me to wonder whether he was truly impressed by my glorious news or simply eager to distance himself from still another crazy student.

I'd waited months and months for this moment, never daring to believe that I'd actually be awarded the grant while hoping against tough odds that somehow it would come through. Having already earned at Carolina two degrees in comparative literature despite a rather reckless social life that kept me on the edge of academic and emotional disaster, I dreamed of nothing more than going to France for an entire year. There I'd expose myself toa culture I'd only read about, perfect a language that infatuated me, and continue my studies in Romanticism before eventually pursuing a doctorate, teaching at some leading American college or university, and becoming ... a distinguished scholar. That I was involved in the most recent intense and everlasting youthful love affair should have discouraged me from wanting to leave North Carolina, but even this was of secondary importance to the vision of living in France. Nor did it much matter that my grant was worth exactly 578,200 old francs, the equivalent of about $1,100 for the year or all of $93 a month to live on.

Naturally, like most American students of any generation I longed to go to Paris. Advised by a wise professor, however, that my chances of getting a Fulbright would probably double if I requested instead to be sent to the provinces, I applied for the University of Grenoble with the intent of studying under the country's most eminent authority on Gérard de Nerval, the nineteenth-century author on whom I'd written my master's thesis. I'll never know whether or not it was actually this tactic that did the trick, but I was given jealous pause when another candidate who was also my best friend requested Paris and got it.

In any case, on September 21, 1961, Jimmy and I together sailed from New York at midnight on the majestic Queen Elizabeth with a rousing send-off from our families and friends, two hotshot Southerners ready to take on new worlds and indulge fully in all the glamour and sophistication and excitement to which we as Fulbrights were entitled. Our first taste of putative glamour was in the form of a tourist-class cabin in the bowels of D Deck no larger than a bear's cave and equipped with sagging upper and lower berths, no porthole, no bath or toilet, and maybe enough luggage space beneath the bottom bunk to accommodate two shaving kits. Most of the fellow Fulbrights we met on board dressed and behaved like refugees on a banana boat. The grub proffered at communal tables in the dreary dining saloon would have been eschewed by swine in any Virginia pigsty. And since the ship had no stabilizers, much of the voyage was spent either heaving up the swill in our bellies or tossing back enough gin at the bars to numb every nerve cell in the disoriented brain. A few years later, when I began to develop a veritable passion for crossing the Atlantic by luxury liner in the comfort of cabin or first class, a few contumelious passengers would often ask if I'd ever traveled "down below." Needless to say, I had a few arresting tales to tell.

Paris in the early sixties was still a Hemingway fantasy, a vibrant, highly cultural, and romantically bohemian city where, under de Gaulle's Fifth Republic, modest postwar prosperity was starting to blend propitiously with a traditional, unique way of life that eventually would be radically or partly shattered by discoteques, nouvelle cuisine, high-speed underpasses, McDonald's, and computer technology. Of course, there were no laundromats, toilet paper resembled waxed sandpaper, and deodorant simply didn't exist even in the most well-stocked pharmacies and Prix Unics. Incredible as it sounds today, however, a Left Bank hotel room with shower and petit déjeuner could be had for the equivalent of three dollars per night (or eighteen dollars a week); dinner in favorite Latin Quarter bistros like Prolognan, Procope, and Aux Assassins ran about four dollars a head; and even in the finest temples of haute cuisine, we heard that it was hard to spend more than fifteen dollars for a sumptuous meal-wine included.

Piaf was singing her same sad love ballads in louche music halls, Cocteau or Sartre or Giacometti could often be spotted in places like the Odéon, Café de Flore, and Grand Palais. And for the price of a cloudy Pernod or café filtre, one could nest for hours on the terrace of Brasserie Lipp while, perched inside on overstuffed banquettes under soaring antique mirrors, powerful cultural and political figures like André Malraux and François Mitterand discussed the future of France over steaming platters of pot-au-feu. The gory Grand Guignol was still terrifying audiences up in Montmartre, the Follies Bergères exuded a racy decadence reminiscent of the belle epoque, and, though certain streets and avenues could be filled with irate French students demonstrating for or against Algerian independence, in restaurants like Au Pied de Cochon in the ancient food market of Les Halles, it was almost a ritual to meet friends in the wee hours of the morning for bowls of cheese-crusted onion soup, carafes of red wine, and lots of bonhomie.

Paris was all and more than I expected, and the fact that, thanks to my parents, I was one of the few students lucky enough to own a car (a blue Volkswagen Beetle) only enhanced the way I and my cohorts quickly got around a city that I knew instinctively would continue to captivate me for the rest of my life. Although it had come as a shock that the French spoken by Parisians bore little resemblance to the lingo I so confidently and arrogantly thought I'd mastered in college, in just a matter of two weeks I was beginning to communicate halfway intelligently with the personnel at the Cité Universitaire where Fulbrights were housed, with the orientation teachers at the Alliance Française, and even with waiters in cafés and restaurants and the gruff old lady behind the counter of my favorite tabac. As for academic pursuits, well, those could wait till all the cultural and social edification was over.

On a rainy, chilly October morning, Jimmy and another Fulbright helped me load a gigantic steamer trunk, suitcase, and portable Royal typewriter (all my worldly goods for a whole year) into the VW in preparation for the 350-mile drive down to Grenoble. Leaving Paris and my friends was traumatic enough, but lighting out on my own into la France profonde with little idea of what awaited me was nothing less than frightening. Before I left the U.S., my worldly father, who had already exposed me somewhat to fine dining in New York, Chicago, San Francisco, and even London, said he'd read in Holiday magazine about a good restaurant he thought was called La Côte d'Or in Saulieu, a small town almost equidistant between Paris and Grenoble and on my direct route. Maybe, he suggested, I could stop there for lunch.

Not, mind you, that I'd ever heard of or cared about Michelin except as a company that produced good tires and road maps, meaning that I certainly had no copy of the legendary red restaurant guide that would have verified the name and location of the restaurant (and that would one day become my bible in France). Nor, as I made my way guardedly down Route Nationale 6 in the pouring rain with visions of the Alps and French classrooms and lofty scholarly endeavors running through my brain, was I in the least bit aware that at Sens and Auxerre and Avallon and elsewhere in this part of Burgundy existed some of the finest food and wines in the entire country. My most immediate and anxious concerns were getting to Grenoble, finding a place to live, getting officially enrolled at the Faculté des Lettres at the university, and meeting the distinguished professor Léon Cellier.

Saulieu the sign read through the flapping windshield wipers. It occurred to me that I was peckish, so slowing down, I looked from side to side through the fogged windows, hoping to catch sight of the restaurant Daddy had mentioned. I saw nothing in the village that looked like a restaurant, but across the busy highway from a gas station I did notice the name Hôtel de la Côte d'Or in gold letters framed in a blue band on a nondescript, yellowish, two-story building. Not really caring where I ate, and thinking that in this hotel I could probably get a good omelette with pommes frites or a croque-monsieur like those I'd had in Paris, I slammed on the brakes and turned into the small parking lot. I did find it strange that next to me was a majestic silver Bentley, but after throwing on a corduroy sports jacket over my crewneck sweater, I made sure the doors to the car were securely locked and raced through the drenching downpour for the hotel entrance carrying only my new and very French satchel containing my important papers and documents.

The lobby couldn't have been less ostentatious or more welcoming: a plain tile floor, wood-paneled walls covered with what looked like lots of family pictures and menus and certificates, simple chairs, a tiny bar, and a desk behind which was a rack of mailboxes and room keys tended by a middle-aged, slim, neatly dressed lady.

After we'd exchanged the appropriate bonjours, I huffed, "Quel temps!" casually whisking the sleeves of my wet jacket with my hands.

"Oui, c'est affreux," she agreed, rolling her gutteral "r" and pronouncing the difficult "eu" in ways I could only envy.

"I was hoping to have a little lunch," I informed in my most careful French. "Maybe an omelette or sandwich."

Madame appeared somewhat taken back. "Does Monsieur have a reservation?"

Now it was I who was a bit surprised as I uttered, "No."

"I'm sorry, Monsieur," she continued politely, "but we serve no sandwiches in the restaurant." She hesitated a moment, glancing again at me suspiciously before looking down at a thick notebook. "But due to the weather, we have had quite a few cancellations today, so if Monsieur would care to be seated in our dining room and see the menu ..."

"Ça va," I confirmed offhandedly, now aware of the intoxicating aromas of food wafting in the air and even more hungry.

Coming from behind the desk, she then ushered me into the restful, almost homey, half-empty restaurant and seated me at a small table next to a window outside of which I could hear cars and trucks speeding by on their way to Paris or Lyon. Across the room was a large display table with baskets of fresh fruit, an assortment of cheeses with a little tag stuck in each, and a huge, rosy ham positioned on a silver stand. The impeccable white tablecloth was heavy starched linen, the small vase of flowers unassuming, the silver brightly polished, and the glassware thin and elegant; and just before a plainly dressed, dark-haired lady arrived to ask if I'd like an apéritif and hand me a menu, it suddenly dawned on me that every man in the place except me was wearing a necktie.

This slight shock was nothing compared with the jolt in the pit of my growling stomach when I started to study the menu and saw the strange dishes and hefty prices. Timbale de Morilles Chatelaine, Quenelles de Brochet Mousseline, Gratin de Queues d'Ecrevisses, La Potée Morvanaise-I'd just as soon have been trying to decipher Sanskrit. In Paris, I'd had complete meals in bistros for no more than seven new francs; here that was the price of a single appetizer. Remembering that my solvency was all of ninety-three dollars a month, my first urge was to escape with some outlandish excuse to Madame and continue driving till I found a humble café. Then I recognized Le Coq au Vin à l'Ancienne priced at eight francs, and detected a half-bottle of some beaujolais for two francs, and was delirious over the fragrances emanating from the next table, and-damnit, I was starving to death.

I tore off a piece of bread from a rugged loaf nestled in cloth in a wire basket and spread butter on one end. The bread was tangy and chewy, the butter sweet, with a slight hazelnut flavor like none I'd ever tasted, not even in Paris. I was beginning to relax.

Pad in hand, the lady returned to the table while I was sipping Pernod and eating bread and listened as I indicated that I'd have just the coq au vin.

"Et pour commencer, Monsieur?" she inquired, a sudden expression of extreme disappointment or pity on her smooth face when I shook my head. She then smiled, placed a carbon copy of the order on the table, and left.

In a few minutes, a tuxedoed waiter brought the bottle of wine, uncorked it, and very ceremoniously poured a little into the wide-lipped glass for me to taste. It was fine, I nodded with confidence, feeling rather proud of myself and actually quite taken with the wine's fresh and intensely fruity flavor. My eyes followed another waiter carrying a large silver tray to a table of four smartly dressed diners across the room, and as I watched him and a helper begin to carve and serve what looked like two chickens or ducks, I couldn't help but also catch sight of a short, stout, mustached man in a white chef's uniform peeking through what must have been the kitchen door. At first I assumed he was observing all the action with the fowl, but soon it became perfectly clear that the object of his attention was ... me.

"The chef would like for you to taste his terrine de gibier," whispered the waiter, placing a small, meaty rectangle in front of me and a china pot of mustard and ceramic jug of what looked like miniature pickles on the table. Baffled by both the gesture and the word gibier (and innocently wondering if I'd be charged for the starter), I nonetheless thanked him and cut into the pâté.


Excerpted from Between Bites by James Villas Excerpted by permission.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Read More Show Less

Interviews & Essays

An Interview with James Villas

Barnes & You seem to have taken on the whole food world in this book and exposed as many warts as beauty marks. Was that your intention?

James Villas: Well, the food world has been getting by with murder for too long, and I thought it was about time to deal with a few truths, some good, some bad, while narrating the history of gastronomy over the past four decades.

B& Most of the people you write about in this book seem quite eccentric and even more rebellious and controversial than you yourself. Is there some explanation?

JV: I don’t have much use for ordinary people. Life is too short. I like extraordinary people. After all, it’s not the yahoos who contribute anything to our world. Ordinary people don’t have much to teach me; extraordinary people do.

B& You say you’re not a conventional food writer; in other words, not a foodie. Explain.

JV: To me, food is important only in relation to life. Unlike the foodies, I don’t like to talk about food alone in the abstract. Food has to relate to a life experience or it means nothing to me. Food by itself is boring! Foodies can be boring.

B& In the book, you tell all about your previous life as an intellectual and a college professor. Is there any link between that vocation and your present one?

JV: The discipline I gained in the academic profession led me to loving to discuss and debate and talk about different subjects. Food and wine, literature, the theatre, great music -- they’re all very important to me.

B& What other food writers do you most admire -- past and present?

JV: M.F.K. Fisher, no doubt about it. Because she never wrote just about food. She wrote about food in relation to the human experience, something in her life; food was the sidebar that inspired her. Also, Craig Claiborne, Silas Spitzer, Jay Jacobs, A. J. Liebling, Lucius Beebe, Paula Wolfert, John Mariani, Betty Fussell -- they’re all in the memoirs. One very good food writer not in today’s wolf pack is R. W. Apple Jr., who’s at The New York Times.

B& Who has had the greatest influence on your life?

JV: Certainly my mother, Martha Pearl Villas, with whom I have coauthored three cookbooks; Henri Soulé, of the famed Pavillon restaurant, Julia Child; Paul Bocuse; Frank Zachary at Town & Country; and all the unheralded, extraordinary little bistro owners, foie gras producers, and farmstead cheese producers, the people you never hear about who play such an important role in the quality of the food we eat. Also, Elaine Whitelaw, who ran the Gourmet Galas for the March of Dimes for decades, who commands an entire chapter in my memoirs.

B& What type of food do you relish most under any circumstances?

JV: French and southern American, because they are codified. They have been the least subjected to all the careless, insane changes that are destroying so many indigenous styles of cooking.

B& How would you assess the food scene in America today? In Europe?

JV: In general, I’ve very dubious. I’m an optimistic rebel, but as my memoir bears out, there’s a certain infantilism and naivete about food today that makes me cringe -- especially in the U.S. and especially with the self-anointed foodies. There is still a deep respect for tradition in most European countries, but with the influence of America spreading more each year, I’m very worried that things there could become as homogenized as here.

B& Are American more sophisticated about food and wine than 20 years ago? Are we as sophisticated as Europeans?

JV: In a way, yes. But we are still the most insecure people in the world about food and wine. We have learned a lot, though. Unlike 30 years ago, we know what fork and knife to use, the difference between a pinot noir and a cabernet, and we are drinking more wine. We’re on the road, but “we ain’t gotten there” by any means yet. As for Europe and Asia, I’m terrified of the American influence there.

B& You blast a lot of American cooking in this book. Is there such a thing as authentic American cookery?

JV: Yes, certainly; it’s evolved over 200 years, and it’s in the regional food of the country. It was written about and championed by a man named James Beard, whom I have a whole chapter about in the book. Contrary to what the foodies and hotshot chefs blindly believe, there’s no need to “create” an American cuisine. We should be exploring the refining the proud one we already have.

B& What’s your overall assessment of American restaurants today? Are they better or worse than in the past?

JV: Worse. Because by and large, they’re not true to themselves, and they’re not providing that supreme excitement of a special experience -- that sense of special occasion. Most are little more than food laboratories and social playpens.

B& You don’t seem to have much respect for today’s restaurant critics. How would you characterize a competent, intelligent restaurant critic?


  • Someone who can cook; most critics can’t.
  • Who has actually worked in a restaurant, as I once did to write about, an experience that is included in this book.
  • Who has traveled widely.
  • And above all, who is not forced to cater to the whims of their publications’ advertisers and what is perceived as trends.
Most restaurant critics don’t do their research. A good restaurant critic is an excellent scholar. John Mariani is good because he explains why something is good or bad; that’s what makes it interesting. Probably the best ever was Craig Claiborne, because for Craig, food was simply good or bad, and he understood exactly why and could explain why with historical examples to back him up.

B& What is your ideal restaurant experience? And your worst nightmare?

JV: When it feels like it is a special occasion even when it’s not. Little gestures by the people serving to make the evening more pleasant. A halfway civilized clientele. Challenging but intelligent cuisine. And, above all, dishes I remember and am eager to have again. The nightmare is when I have wasted an entire evening and lots of money and can’t remember what I ate, and that’s 85 percent of my dining-out experiences today.

B& How do Americans behave in restaurants today? Are they secure, informed, and intelligent, or are they real clods?

JV: Still insecure, the most insecure diners in the world, which is one reason that noise seems to be a cardinal requirement to enjoyment in many American restaurants. If you want to see a fidgety, miserable American diner, put him in a quiet, respectable, civilized setting like Taillevent in Paris.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 7, 2002

    Between Bites: Memoirs of a Hungry Hedonist

    I never thought food and life could be so intertwined. I enjoyed this book thoroughly and highly recommend it

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 29, 2002

    A Terrific Appetite

    A delicously subjective memoir of someone who knows about the best things in life--from menus to music. Here's a beautifully and wittily written book--with no holds barred--and by no means just for 'foodies'.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 7, 2002

    Between Bites: Memoirs of a Hungry Hedonist

    I found this book to be one I could not put down. Page after page of a fascinating life, and how it interacts with food. I would suggest this book to anyone who eats!

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)