I met Chad Carns a few months ago at a wine tasting event and was immediately impressed by his genuine enthusiasm, curiosity, and humility—qualities that aren’t common enough in food writing. He sent me a copy of his book for my reaction. Here it is.
The Gourmet Bachelor
By Chad Carns
(Carns Concepts, thegourmetbachelor.com)
At first glance, The Gourmet Bachelor looks like another of those facile coffee table cookbooks, with glistening food photos, slick design, big print and indifferent recipes. But crack it open and you’ll glean a lot of smart insights, experience-based tips and a nice variety of dishes–dinner entrees, some lighter fare, desserts and even breakfast–most of which seem easy enough for any semi-capable cook (while the brevity of instructions is nice for the knowledgable, a true novice could misstep).
Carns structures the book around his personal experience in Greenwich Village, organizing recipes into four weeks of meals, each with varietal wine pairings by Justin Cristoph (a wine expert for Christie’s and others , see www.winechristoph.com), who also provides a smart “Wine 101” chapter. Chef Rob Fitzhenry and others helped Carns develop the book. His locale alone is an unintended endorsement: If Carns can make these recipes in a tiny Manhattan apartment kitchen, they can’t be too difficult.
Of course, the implication within a phrase like the “Gourmet Bachelor” is that these are dishes made to impress a date (if not enliven your solitude). To that end, the enticing book might work almost as well just sitting around the living room—or even the back seat of your car—implying you’re sophisticated and worldly enough to appreciate the international cuisine.
I’m going to try that method first, and let you know how it works out
Photography by Sasha Gitin and Lou Manna, is of course, gorgeous.
[also posted on Amazon.com product page]