on 15 July 1998
The book offers an eclectic set of recipes by Chef Michael Lomanaco of the world famous "21" Club in New York. The recipes generally focus on using top quality ingredients to produce entrees, rather than the use of difficult-to-find or rare ingredients. Neither do the recipes require the cook to follow a complicated and lengthy set of instructions, such as "...hang for four days over a mesquite-wood fire while basting hourly with a vintage Montrachet."
The game recipes are particulary good and offer a wonderful departure from the usual hunter's recipes printed in a myriad of specialty game cookbooks. Game prepared using these recipes cannot easily be identified as game and will likely pass muster as beef or lamb by your dear Aunt Katie who hates hunting. After eating a bite of elk venison she will probably go on at length about never having eaten any sort of game.
The book is also full of delightful gossip about famous patrons of the "21&q! ! uot; Club, from Ernest Hemingway and Clark Gable to Marilyn Monroe. Movie goers have probably seen the New Orleans-like grill work facade and the many jockey statues frequently, perhaps without consciously realizing that this was the renown "21" Club.
The book is also full of reproduction art, some of which yet graces the walls of the Club. The Club has a number of artworks by Frederic Remington, some of which are reproduced in the book. Other examples of art were done by patrons of the club who were members of the elite New York social scene of times gone by.
The "21" Club remained active during prohibition and allegedly managed never to be caught with illegal liquor on the premises when they were raided by New York's finest. One can only wonder whether this was sheer luck or advance notice by patrons who were members of the upper crust of New York politics.
Anyone who both loves fine food and is fascinated by New York should have a copy of this un! ! usual cookbook.