Best Food Writing 2017

We rated this book:


“There was a banner out front that read ‘CNN Top 50 Chinese Restaurants in America.” The place had also been recommended by coworkers as the best “Chinese food ever. I’d be more discriminating in my assessment, but would feel pretty comfortable saying it was among the best kung pao shrimp I’ve had.”

We love superlatives. This isn’t new – the classical epics and courtly romances are full of knights vying for the title of bravest or strongest, fighting for their maidens to be named fairest in all the land – but the proliferation of “best of” lists/books/television programs does seem to have gotten a bit out of hand. Or is this innate ordering and ranking not so much a debasement of language and intellect borne of laziness and brain rot, but a culturally-constructed filtering mechanism? Think about it – inundated with newsletters, Twitter feeds, maybe even magazine articles, how do we decide what is worth our time and attention?

Obviously, the notion of the “best of” phenomenon as a sort of aggregator and/or gatekeeper raises questions about taste/privilege/etc., but it’s a good jumping off point for someone like me, someone who’s interested in a particular scene/niche but not immersed in it.

Reviewed By:

Author Holly Hughes
Star Count 3/5
Format Trade
Page Count 368 pages
Publisher Da Capo Lifelong Books
Publish Date 2017-Oct-17
ISBN 9780738220185
Amazon Buy this Book
Issue September 2018
Category Cooking, Food & Wine


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