Never before have we cared so much about food. With inimitable charm and learning, Adam Gopnik charts America's recent and rapid evolution from commendably aware eaters to manic, compulsive gastronomes. It is a journey that begins in eighteenth-century France and carries us to the kitchens of the White House, the molecular meccas of Barcelona, and beyond. Throughout, Gopnik reminds us of a time-honored truth: What goes on the table has never mattered as much to our lives as what goes on around the table--the scene of families, friends, lovers coming together, or breaking apart; conversation across the simplest or grandest board. This, ultimately, is who we are.
Gathering people and places drawn from a quarter century's reporting in North America and France, The Table Comes First is the delightful beginning of a new conversation about the way we eat now.
ADAM GOPNIK was raised and educated in Montreal, is married to a Winnipegger, and still has strong ties to family in Canada. He has been writing for the New Yorker since 1986. Gopnik lived in Paris from 1995 to 2000, when he wrote the international bestseller Paris to the Moon. He is a three-time winner of the National Magazine Awards for Essays and for Criticism and winner of the George Polk Award for Magazine Reporting. He now lives in New York with his wife and their two children.
"Gopnik explores the history and tradition of gathering around the table with intellect, humour and keen insight. Break with the tradition of wine and flowers, and give this book to your favourite dinner party host."
"More ambitious than a history of restaurants--it's about how we taste, dream and argue about food.... At once sweeping and intimate."
—The Daily Beast
"One of the few cerebral books on culinary matters deserving a place alongside Brillat-Savarin's Physiology of Taste and Richard Olney's Simple French Food."
"A feast of fine prose and fascinating insights."
"[The Table Comes First is] history, nutrition, philosophy, anthropology and sociology all rolled up into one delectable streusel of insight and illumination."