IS A MENU by Michel Roux
people are extremely talented. As one of the World's
great Chefs Michel Roux is undoubtedly one of those
people. It seems somewhat unfair then that he should
also be an extremely talented writer.
is an autobiography with a difference - it grabs your
attention from the beginning and throughout shows you
tantalising glimpses both of his culinary art and his
life. Nothing stodgy about this narrative and, although
it might be clichéd to say it, as light and delicate
as you would expect from someone trained in the art
of the patissier.
Roux introduces us to a very different world in which
he grew up, a world which surprised me. As to why you
will have to read the book. It is also a great insight
into what it takes to achieve greatness as a Chef -
extreme dedication and hard work. The book also shows
the rewards that have come from that dedication and
hard work - his career achievements, the people he has
met and delighted with his food and the places he has
style of the book, as suggested by the title "Life
is a Menu", is laid out in chapters which deal
with the component parts of the menu. Starting with
Champagne and Canapés it goes into mouth-watering
detail of the various foods and styles of cuisine from
the time the young apprentice patissier, Michel Roux,
started a long and distinguished career in 1956 to the
present day. It is a revelation to discover how a Master
Chef learnt his craft.
the way we get to meet different personalities, great
Chefs in their own right like, Paul Bocuse and the Troisgros
Brothers. Could you really have 'Truite fumée'
for 75p or an entrée for £1.75 when Le
Gavroche first opened in 1967 - pioneering days for
the Roux Brothers in a land more used to processed peas
and sliced bread!
is sprinkled throughout with anecdotes and culinary
tips that appear seamlessly as part of the continuing
narrative. It is a book I will treasure and read again,
as well as use some of the recipes it contains!
the book was a great disappointment to me. Why? Because
while reading I was living in the world of Michel Roux
which for me was true escapism. I have experienced this
before in fiction but never in a fact-based book - hopefully
there will be more reminiscences to be published in
Chef - great book!
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