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the Complete Review
the complete review - miscellanea

Schott's Food & Drink Miscellany

Ben Schott

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To purchase Schott's Food & Drink Miscellany

Title: Schott's Food & Drink Miscellany
Author: Ben Schott
Genre: defying
Written: 2003
Length: 159 pages
Availability: Schott's Food & Drink Miscellany - US
Schott's Food & Drink Miscellany - UK
Schott's Food & Drink Miscellany - Canada
  • Conceived, written, and designed by Ben Schott
  • Word count: 48,380

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Our Assessment:

-- : entertaining, fun

See our review for fuller assessment.

Review Summaries
Source Rating Date Reviewer
The Independent . 5/12/2003 Christopher Hirst
Sunday Telegraph . 23/11/2003 John Preston
The NY Times . 8/9/2004 William Grimes
TLS . 6/2/2004 Paul Levy

  Review Consensus:

  Thoroughly enjoyed it

  From the Reviews:
  • "(Y)ou don't know whether it should go in the kitchen or the loo. Either way, it's utterly irresistible." - Christopher Hirst, The Independent

  • "Schott's Food and Drink Miscellany follows the same format as before: same beguiling and well-balanced mix of semi-useful information with utterly useless nonsense; same clear and attractive design." - John Preston, Sunday Telegraph

  • "(P)ointedly pointless, intentionally aimless and endlessly entertaining." - William Grimes, The New York Times

  • "Schott's Food and Drink Miscellany, though very specialized when compared to Ben Schott's previous Christmas general knowledge ofering, is every bit as distracting and equally funny." - Paul Levy, Times Literary Supplement

Please note that these ratings solely represent the complete review's biased interpretation and subjective opinion of the actual reviews and do not claim to accurately reflect or represent the views of the reviewers. Similarly the illustrative quotes chosen here are merely those the complete review subjectively believes represent the tenor and judgment of the review as a whole. We acknowledge (and remind and warn you) that they may, in fact, be entirely unrepresentative of the actual reviews by any other measure.

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The complete review's Review:

       Schott's Food & Drink Miscellany is, like its predecessor, Schott's Original Miscellany, an elegant little volume of both trivial and (occasionally) useful trivia. As the title suggests, the focus here is narrower. Fortunately, food and drink (and cigar) triva proves far-ranging too. From epicurean eponyms (for those who have always wondered who salmonella was named for) to a list of films featuring cannibalism, from the favourite foods and drink of the members of the Bay City Rollers ... okay, nobody really needs to know that. But from the names of slaves at a Roman feast (we're thinking of getting ourselves a sandaligeruli) to edible flowers to the mysteries behind Surströmming, ullage, and mithridatization -- as well as a handy reference to Laotian cooking measures and suggestions as to how to blow smoke rings -- Schott's Food & Drink Miscellany offers a great deal of diverting and often interesting information, much of which one is unlikely to readily come across elsewhere.
       The attractive, simple design, the handy size, and the sense of humour found throughout (often in the small details) make for a book that's very entertaining -- fun to dip into, or read straight through. And there are a few bits of information that actually are useful.
       Oddly remarkable, certainly worthwhile.

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Schott's Food & Drink Miscellany: Reviews: Ben Schott: Other books by Ben Schott under review: Other books of interest under review:

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About the Author:

       Ben Schott is a British collector of miscellanea.

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© 2003-2010 the complete review

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