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Smart Casual - The Transformation of Gourmet Restaurant Style in America - cover

Smart Casual - The Transformation of Gourmet Restaurant Style in America

Alison Pearlman

Publisher: The University of Chicago Press

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Summary

“A delicious romp through America’s rapidly changing and diverging restaurant scene . . . an informative, witty, and delightful book.” —Andrew F. Smith, editor of The Oxford Encyclopedia of Food and Drink in America 
 
Haute has blurred with homey cuisine in the last few decades, but how did this radical change happen, and what does it say about current attitudes toward taste? Here with the answers is food writer Alison Pearlman. In Smart Casual: The Transformation of Gourmet Restaurant Style in America, Pearlman investigates what she identifies as the increasing informality in the design of contemporary American restaurants.  
 
By design, Pearlman does not just mean architecture. Her argument is more expansive—she is as interested in the style and presentation of food, the business plan, and the marketing of chefs as she is in the restaurant’s floor plan or menu design. Pearlman takes us hungrily inside the kitchens and dining rooms of restaurants coast to coast—from David Chang’s Momofuku noodle bar in New York to the seasonal, French-inspired cuisine of Alice Waters and Thomas Keller in California to the deconstructed comfort food of Homaro Cantu’s Moto in Chicago—to explore the different forms and flavors this casualization is taking.  
 
Through lively on-the-scene observation and interviews with major players and chefs, Smart Casual will transport readers to restaurants around the country to learn the secrets to their success and popularity. It is certain to give foodies and restaurant-goers something delectable to chew on. 
 
“This study is erudite and hip, written with both verve and a keen analytical eye.” —Ken Albala, author of Beans: A History
Available since: 04/15/2013.
Print length: 218 pages.

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