What's your favorite book (non-cookbook, preferably nonfiction) about food? I very much enjoyed Feast, by Roy Strong, although Kitchen Confidential was fun in an I'm-so-embarrassed-to-be-reading-this sort of way.
Near A Thousand Tables-Felipe Fernandez-Armesto:
I read it when it first was published; a great, concise, opinionated, anti-orthorexia history of food. It holds a place of honor in the small shelf space I have allotted to great food writing(Brillat-Savarin, Fisher, Tolbert, Reichl-as-editor, Wechsberg, and de Pomiane...and Bourdain, Child, Ruhlman). The rest, tho' quite beloved, most often reside in book boxes in the closet.
You don't see his book mentioned very often. He's approachable, academic, and, well, great.
Books by M.F.K. Fisher are excellent
As was The Artful Eater by Edward Behr
Home Cooking by Laurie Colwin
Here are some that I've enjoyed recently:
1. Food Politics, by Marion Nestle. About the politics behind govt food policies.
2. The Seasoning of a Chef, by Doug Psaltis. Excellent memoir about moving up the ranks from a scrub in a kitchen to a top chef.
3. Wife of the Chef by Courtney Febbroriello. Nice memoir by, well, the wife of a chef. The husband and wife team own a small bistro in Connecticut (if I remember). She works the front.
4. Love by the Glass by Dorothy Gaiter and John Brecher. The best food/wine related book I've read in a long time. They are the husband-wife team who write the excellent Tastings column in the Wall Street Journal. The book is a memoir of their relationship, with tasting notes. Read the intro chapter and you will be hooked.
5. The Tummy Triology by Calvin Trilling. Funny read.
6. Adventures on the Wine Route, byt Kermit Lynch. An excellent inside view of the people who make the excellent wines Lynch inports.
7. Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain. A modern classic. I loved it.
8. Cooking for Mr. Latte by Amanda Hesser. I've come to despite Hesser's writing in the Times, but this is a nice memoir about her romance with her now-husband, a non-Foodie.
9. Turning the Tables by Steven Shaw. A nice read about restaurants by one of the founders of egullet.com.
See http://www.chowhound.com/topics/show/... for more ideas.
On Rue Tatin, by Susan Hermann Loomis
The Tummy Trilogy, Calvin Trillin
Feeding a Yen, Calvin Trillin
Kitchen Confidential, The Nasty Bits (can you tell I'm a Bourdain fan?), Under the Tuscan Sun, Julie and Julia, I just finished Molly O'Neill's new book and enjoyed it.
Love this thread, I'm always looking for new foodie-friendly books to read!