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The wife of the chef
Courtney Febbroriello
Adult Nonfiction TX910.3 .F43 2003

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From Publishers' Weekly:

In this window into the life of a chef's wife, Febbroriello challenges the stereotype of such women as pampered-she doesn't like exotic foods, is a vegetarian, subsists on potatoes and yogurt gulped down on the run. Febbroriello tires of hearing how wonderful it must be to be the wife of cook Christopher Prosperi of Metro Bis in Simsbury, Conn., and complains of condescending businessmen who assume they need to talk to her husband when she herself is part owner. She details the manic organizational demands of owning a restaurant, customer complaints, crowded lunches, a husband to whom every surface is a napkin; she even dishes out raunchy kitchen jokes. After her experience as Fry-O-Lator girl in a restaurant that allowed workers to pick up food that had fallen on a floor frequented by cockroaches, Febbroriello vowed never to eat out again-that is, until she became enamored of her husband-to-be and his passion for all things food. With chapter titles like "Combat Skills" and "The Rules of the Jungle," the book makes one wonder why anyone would want to be in this business. There is only passing mention of the rewarding customers and quirky regulars, and with only one recipe, there is more evidence of passion for bookkeeping than there is passion for food. However, those who have suffered the indignities and long hours of the restaurant business will appreciate her no-nonsense descriptions of the fierce competition for the best ingredients, wines and employees; the politics of reviewing; the financial woes; and the customers who can't make up their minds. (Jan.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

From Library Journal:

While working in an ice cream shop in college, Febbroriello met her future husband, chef Christopher Prosperi, who was cooking in the restaurant across the street. Love blossomed, and they eventually married, soon after buying a restaurant in Connecticut called Metro Bis. Then the author discovered what it was like to be the often unappreciated, unrecognized, and misunderstood "wife of the chef." Febbroriello gives readers an insightful, fascinating look at advantages and disadvantages of being married to a chef as she cheerfully skewers misperceptions about the supposedly glamorous world of cooking. She details the long hours, hard work, and personality conflicts that are a part of running any successful restaurant. Febbroriello seasons her writing with just the right touch of deliciously dry wit, and her story of a marriage and a restaurant will be savored by readers who enjoyed other culinary literary treats such as Ruth Reichl's Tender at the Bone, Leslie Brenner's The Fourth Star, or Anthony Bourdain's Kitchen Confidential. Highly recommended for most public libraries.-John Charles, Scottsdale P.L., AZ (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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