Just Read – America The Edible: A Hungry History, From Sea To Dining Sea

Attention fellow epicures. You do not know food is done until it’s been Man v. Food done. This has now become the food book I judge others by.

I’ve just finished reading the delectable Adam Richman’s America The Edible: A Hungry History, From Sea To Dining Sea. Where do I begin? I can summarise it here quickly for you before I continue. Yes, I loved it. I loved it a lot. The day I discovered Adam’s show Man v. Food on the TLC channel, I knew I was in for a win. Fast-forward a year and it just got better with the release of this book. In fact, the first episode I ever saw was set in New York, his stomping groud. And now I have an absolute hankering to go to Katz’s Deli in Brooklyn. Send a salami to your boy in the army, I’ll have what she’s having, etc etc.

America The Edible is the most exquisite mix of history, geography, personal reflection, prose … and yes, the ubiquitous extensive rundown of how the food plays out once it’s been shovelled in. It really is a comprehensive beginning-to-now account of Adam’s journey from struggling actor to one of America’s most recognisable television personalities.

What I didn’t expect was this: Richman actually has laid his soul bare for the reader. You partake in his most personal thoughts and feelings, and most heart-wrenching and heart-warming moments. We can all relate to the Adam searching for his next big break, or the Adam saying kissing his girlfriend for the last time before the split. But what’s nice is food is quite the healer. I certainly think food has that magic power.

There’s a real sweetness to the book in that respect, something you don’t quite get a lot. No bravado. He truly wears his heart on his sleeve, and that drew me in quite a bit. You can’t help but fall in love with him.

Richman at Katz's Deli. Photo from NYDailyNews.com.

Now for the food aspect of the book. You can expect jealousy inducing descriptions. Oh yes, you can. This dude takes his food seriously.

“A squirt of hot mustard and I was ready to perch on the bumper of a parked car and dig in. The smell was a rich, almost perfumey blend of oil, grilled meat, and pepper, and the first bite was utterly orgasmic. The fresh bread had a bit of a crunch that yielded to a toothy tear. The mustard and the unctuous vegetable mixture hit the roof of my mouth as my tongue and lower jaw cut through the spicy richness of the sausage, which gave way with an incredible, crispy snap.”

You’ll eat filthy sushi in St Louis, refreshing shave ice in Hawaii, hot sausage in Brooklyn, lobster rolls in Portland…

Yes you should read it. I laughed (a lot – one seriously funny fella), cried, got hungry, and caught a SERIOUS travel bug.

Well played , Sir.


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