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Insatiable: Tales from a Life of Delicious Excess (Englisch) Audio-CD – Gekürzte Ausgabe, Audiobook

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  • Audio CD
  • Verlag: Hachette Audio; Auflage: Abridged (4. April 2006)
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 1594832072
  • ISBN-13: 978-1594832079
  • Größe und/oder Gewicht: 14,4 x 15,1 x 1,5 cm
  • Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 3.0 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (1 Kundenrezension)
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 2.884.043 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)

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'Insatiable serves as a reminder of how fresh and clever Ms Greene can be. Shameless too' - NEW YORK TIMES 'An outrageously fun memoir from novelist and longtime New York magazine dining critic Greene that reads more like Who-I-Slept-With rather than What-I-Ate...Lively and large-spirited, her account sizzles' - KIRKUS '...Fun memoir...with breathless descriptions of sexual trysts and travel tales' - PUBLISHERS WEEKLY -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine andere Ausgabe: Taschenbuch .


One afternoon in 1968 Clay Felker, founder and power behind the much-heralded New York magazine, asked Gael Greene to be the restaurant critic of his infant weekly. Though a passionate foodie, Greene had never reviewed a restaurant in her life, but the prospect of writing for a magazine that was already the talk of the town, alongside such media stars as Tom Wolfe, Gloria Steinem and Jimmy Breslin, not to mention dining in the world's great restaurants on someone else's dime, was too enticing to turn down. Thus began Gael Greene's long and marvellous career charting the course of social history through the restaurants that changed the way America ate, the chefs who turned cooking into an art form and the foods and wines that launched a culinary revolution. From the afternoon in a Detroit hotel when she didn't say no to Elvis Presley and through trysts with Hollywood icons, celebrated chefs and a notorious porn star, Greene has always maintained that food and sex are inextricably linked, and in this delicious, infectiously passionate memoir, she takes readers on a joyride into some unforgettable kitchens and bedrooms. -- Dieser Text bezieht sich auf eine andere Ausgabe: Taschenbuch .

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Format: Audio CD
I picked up this book because I remembered reading Gael Greene's many ecstatic restaurant reviews in New York Magazine over the years. I found her to be more reliable for my food and service preferences than Craig Claiborne was, and she was always down-to-earth in her comments.

But I must admit that I was more than a little puzzled by the cover image of a woman wearing only a hat who is somewhat covered by food and beverages. Within ten pages, I knew what was going on. Ms. Greene has decided to enlighten her readers about her voracious bedroom appetites and her desire to romp with celebrities. She could have skipped those parts for me. I really didn't need nor want to know about all that. In addition, she kindly shared all of the details of her marriage falling apart. I really didn't need nor want to know about that either.

Back to the food and beverages. Ms. Greene had a wonderful vantage point as the restaurant writer for New York Magazine for more decades than she cares to remember. In the book, she recounts the highs of those experiences and gives a fast-paced panoramic view of how the passing scenes changed. While early on, the details came relatively slowly . . . by the end of the book they come in such a rush that it's head spinning . . . and ultimately not too rewarding. Restaurants and chefs rise and fall. It's our connection to them that count.

I was struck that by 1980 she had become enough of a force that she wasn't usually having a normal meal experience at the restaurants. The material became more like celebrity gazing after that, rather than focused on food and beverages. I was struck to see that her celebrity position didn't necessarily gain her better treatment at these restaurants than I had received myself at about the same times.
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf (beta) 41 Rezensionen
40 von 44 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Excellent insider (really inside) look at NY haute cuisine. Buy It. 13. Mai 2006
Von B. Marold - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
`Insatiable' is a collection of anecdotal memoirs by Ms. Gael Greene of the overshadowingly broad brimmed hats and long time food writer and restaurant critic of `New York' magazine. While the 51 chapters do touch on Ms. Greene's life before `New York', they generally stay very close to their `New York' wellspring, her column, named `The Insatiable Gourmet' by magazine editor in chief, Clay Felker.

The most immediate comparison which comes to mind is to the three volumes of memoirs by current `Gourmet' editor in chief, Ruth Reichl who, for several years, sat in Craig Claiborne's chair as principle restaurant reviewer for `The New York Times' and whose most recent book, `Garlic and Sapphires' deals entirely with her `New York Times' restaurant reviews and her tactics for maintaining her anonymity while in the hunt for excellence at New York's finer eateries. And, as similar as these two women's careers may be, the differences make both bodies of work that much more interesting.

While Reichl, the younger of the two by at least a decade, grew up in New York City and learned French at a very early age, her professional culinary journalistic career was shaped on the west coast, firmly under the influence of the American food vanguard lead by the California vintners, Alice Waters, Jeremiah Tower, and Wolfgang Puck. Greene grew up in provincial Detroit, but had her culinary instincts formed by the emerging community of French restaurants in New York City. Her center of culinary gravity was in the dining rooms, kitchens, and cellars of the great French culinary establishment. She even admits that she came late to the California culinary movement. To her credit, as soon as she had her first experience of Alice Waters' cuisine at `Chez Panisse', she recognized that there was something important going on by the Pacific coast.

Reichl's first two volumes of memoirs are more strictly biographical than `Insatiable' in that they are strictly chronological. Reichl's revelations about her life are also unusual to me, at the time, for the remarkable candor about her sexual life. Madame Reichl was a Den Mother compared to Ms. Greene, whose title refers not only to her culinary appetites, but to her sexual appetites as well. I won't dwell on this much, but her exploits make me and most average Americans feel like monks or nuns in comparison.

These sexual exploits include dozens of famous figures from the culinary world, but they also include several notables from Hollywood. As a hint, I will reveal that Ms. Greene tells the tales of how she landed in bed with two very big leading men, both of whom appeared together on the cover of `Time' magazine. And yet, Ms. Greene can be remarkably circumspect about the details of many liaisons.

It is interesting to see the difference in reaction to some of the major figures both have met. Danny Kaye appears in both narratives, however, he is a much bigger part in Ms. Greene's story, as does James Beard, Julia Child, Craig Claiborne, Pierre Franey, and M.F.K. Fisher, as Ms. Greene was able to encounter all these people while they were still at or near their prime, unlike Ms. Reichl, who did not arrive in the `big time' at the `Times' until most of these people were retired or gone. The stories regarding Danny Kaye are especially nice, as I have been pining for more information on his culinary abilities ever since I read Ms. Reichl's report of a dinner he prepared in his custom build `kitchen theatre'.

Ms. Greene also fills in a lot of information on some of the more romantically interesting figures in the culinary world. For example, when one reads other accounts of the lives of `Le Bernardin' founders, Gilbert and Maguy LeCoze, you are left with the feeling that their closeness can only be explained by a particularly `unnatural' sexual relation. Miss Gael assures us in no uncertain terms that both Gilbert and Maguy were decidedly conventional (At least for young French natives) in their sexual behavior, each with their own one or more partners, including, for Gilbert, Ms. Greene herself now and then. She also sheds light on the fact that suspicions to the contrary, Pierre Franey was a complete heterosexual, with no erotic connection to culinary colleague, the well-known homosexual, Craig Claiborne.

One feature of New York dining on which Ms. Greene and Ms. Reichl agree is that most of the high end venues are far too inclined to give preferential treatment to favorite customers, most of which are celebrities. One of the most disagreeable cases appears in the chapter about the literary watering hole, `Elaine's' which became popular among celebs almost by accident, when `Harper's' editor Nelson Aldrich (not even Nelson Algren), wandered in and stayed awhile, bringing a few other literary luminaries along in later visits. And, while we are less likely to be inconvenienced by this, this is just as true of Parisian venues as those in the Big Apple.

Like Ms. Reichl, Ms. Greene sprinkles in a few recipes here and there, after every second or third chapter. These are interesting, but I found her passing remarks about dishes within her text to be far more evocative, as when one New York maestro filled a baked potato with creamed chipped beef and how Gilbert LeCoze prepared such simple fish dishes, because he never received the kind of training which showed him how to do elaborate preparations (Under Eric Ripert, `Le Bernardin' is still a temple to simple, fresh fish cooking).

While Ms. Reichl's last book may be more interesting to the serious foodie as it deals in much more detail with the specific restaurants, reviews, and events surrounding her researches, Ms. Greene's book has far more interesting and far more lascivious information about the lives and loves of the culinary great in New York and France.

A delicious tart of a read!
34 von 37 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
A Bitter Disappointment 6. September 2006
Von Fran Sepler - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
I absorb "foodie" books at the rate that some breathe. Reichl, Bourdain, Child, Buxton and others are the source of hours of fond distraction from my too-busy-to-do-anything life and my aspirations to understand food the way I understand my professional work -- intuitively, technically and personally.

I had read that this book was more of a bawdy personal history than others, but I always adore the personal details of the writers, and am hardly a prude. Nevertheless, I could hardly muster an ounce of empathy for the gratuitous sexual self-objectification of the author who viewed restaurants more as stars in a social strata than producers of cuisine. I did not care about her tortured relationship with a porn star, whom she fed and bedded on her employer's dime. I grew exasperated as she ended a chapter about three marriages with a confession that she wrote it without understanding the point, and still, after writing it and choosing to include it in her book, she did not. The simple reality is that a writer is speaking to a reader, and Ms. Green's reader appeared to be...Ms. Green. While it is apparent that others enjoyed this book, I would suspect that a day with "Garlic and Sapphires" would disabuse anyone of the notion that this is a delightful memoir, and instead expose it for the indulgence that it is.
11 von 11 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
empty, empty 7. Juni 2007
Von Natasha - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Taschenbuch
If Reichl's memoirs were a nourishing meal, then Greene's is a bag of chips. Reichl's trilogy about her life in food is ultimately about developing relationships, and discovering how to make a meaningful life.

Greene's book, in contrast, reads as a series of lists 1) foods she has eaten 2) men she has slept with 3) celebrities she has known. There is no real character development, nor any personal insights.

True, she has enjoyed amazing, sumptious meals, but to what end? There is no meaning to her life beyond the endless quest for rich meals on her employer's dime. Her sexual appetite, although clearly prodigious, leads her to make empty choice after empty choice. Some people will wish that they shared Greene's luck that allowed her to live a completely self-indulgent life. But most sensible people will be grateful that they haven't haven't wasted every moment pursuing nothing.

An empty life leads to an empty book--a bit ironic considering the title. Reichl's books, though far less sexual, are fare more sensual and satisfying.
6 von 6 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Only Insatiable if you enjoy name dropping after name dropping 9. Juli 2007
Von Diva Denise - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
I was so looking forward to another food critic's life story like Ruth Reichl's Garlic and Sapphire - one of the best books I have ever read.

I was seriously dissappointed. I realize that at the time Greene became a food critic, critics were well known by the restauranteurs and treated like Queens with special menus the rest of the people dining did not ever see, but I had no idea how bad it was. To think everyones opinion was determined by a few egotistical food critics in New York who never ate the way the rest of the people did is disgusting. Couple this with her flamboyant use of her magazines money to pay for all her meals (and her lovers meals) and you can't find a reason to enjoy the true life of Gael Greene.

Frankly, for me, her little splurge with a porn star was the most interesting part of the book, but then she would move on to sleep with the very chefs she was reviewing.

Halfway through the book it became a real snore with very little mention of food - which is why a foodie would buy such a book. Instead it was one celebrity name after another, one bit of gossip after another and list after list of names of chefs and all their restaurants and if they made it or not. It was more one long dull gossip column than a book.
11 von 13 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
Book about food, sex and more... 6. April 2006
Von Tola - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Gebundene Ausgabe
As a restaurant critic Gael Greene has had a life full of delicious meals, interesting travels and exciting encounters with the opposite sex, and not only. Her memoir captures both her life and the paths of her career but also the history of food and how it's importance evolved throughout the years. The book however does not focus on food. The descriptions of different types of food and restaurants accompanied by some deliciously -looking recipes are very well balanced with the descriptions of sometimes quite saucy relationships of the author.

I thought it was a fun and interesting memoir showing a slightly different approach to a lot of things... To summarize the book I would just say - very spicy!!! And I'm not only talking about the food here...
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