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Publishers WeeklyStarred Review.
This enormously enjoyable meditation on subjects like Spanish olive oil, bagels "boiled in city tap water" and the varieties of Italian pork products was penned by the cheese guru behind New York City's Fairway Market, who published in 1996 a definitive cheese encyclopedia (Cheese Primer). Less didactic, but written in the same hard-bitten but friendly style, Jenkins brings wry good humor to his chronicle of the Fairway grocery empire, following his progress from a single, smallish outlet on Manhattan's Upper West Side to a four-warehouses-and-counting institution. Along the way, he introduces readers to the countless characters, headaches and small pleasures that constitute life in the grocery business. Who knew how much work went into creating the perfect olive display? Or how much aggravation is involved in importing raw-milk cheese? Or how hard it is to maneuver cases of dairy products, especially at four in the morning? A handful of terrifically appealing recipes accompany the text, nailing just about every specialty a food lover could crave: Sauteed Veal Chop with Arugula Salad, Classic Creamy Mashed Potatoes, Lentils with Garlic Sausage, and a heavenly Rustic Apple Tart with Crème Fraiche. Among the recipes, the charming photographs, and the detailed Fairway lore, this book may convince some foodies to move to New York City-or least to do all their grocery shopping there.
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