Another instructive fantasy of French luxury lifestyles from former Veuve Clicquot CEO and best-selling author Guiliano (French Women Don't Get Facelifts, 2013, etc.).
"Where else do you find people excited to rapture over slurping slippery gross-looking chunks of flesh down their gullets? Ummm…délicieux." In this slender book, Guiliano sets out to convince readers that Paris is the international center for oyster lovers, and her narrative is rather like a whirlwind specialty tour. She manages to make her own nationality seem like an affectation by salting her already French-influenced prose with often clichéd French words and phrases and inconsistent replacements of "the" with "zee." This book is not likely to please fans of good travel and food literature, but for the author’s fans, and for a light first introduction to the world of oyster consumption and the oyster’s place in French culture, it may be a pleasant choice. Guiliano circles around a tiny and excellent oyster restaurant in Paris, the Huîtrerie Régis, and its predictably charming and temperamental owner, making them the stepping-off point for the rest of her material. The author provides some solid information about oysters embedded in scattershot anecdotes. Throughout the book, she devotes sections to oysters’ nutritional value, a brief history, the many varieties and their characteristics, how to open them, eat them and evaluate them, the condiments and wines that go best with them, the oyster growers of France, the first oyster experiences of her friends and even a few glances at the oysters of other nations. Her preference is very much for the freshest possible raw oysters, but as in her previous books, she includes a nice selection of French, American and Italian recipes in the penultimate chapter.
A somewhat fluffy and affected introduction to mostly French oyster consumption.