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Sweet Honey, Bitter Lemons: Travels in Sicily on a Vespa Paperback – 2 Jul 2009

4.6 out of 5 stars 35 customer reviews

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  • Sweet Honey, Bitter Lemons: Travels in Sicily on a Vespa
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  • A House In Sicily
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  • Lonely Planet Sicily (Travel Guide)
Total price: £33.95
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Product details

  • Paperback: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Ebury Press (2 July 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0091910811
  • ISBN-13: 978-0091910815
  • Product Dimensions: 12.6 x 2.2 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 87,358 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"Witty and romantic" (Metro)

"An accomplished piece of travel writing that makes you want to explore the island all for yourself" (Sunday Express)

"Perfect summer holiday reading" (The Bookseller)

"Matthew has an infectious delight in proper food" (Rick Stein)

"The finest book on this fascinating cuisine since Peter Robb's Midnight in Sicily" (Christopher Hirst The Independent)

Book Description

Esteemed food critic and writer Matthew Fort takes to his Vespa in search of Sicily's culinary delights.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Many people will have seen Matthew Fort on Great British Menu or read his Guardian columns over the years. His passion for food is totally infectious. And behind his affable demeanour is a sharp mind, wonderful eye for detail and delightfully involving use of language. On this journey around Sicily he also shows an awful lot of himself. It is a very personal journey. It shows not only a sense of the history of the places he visits, it also tells a lot about his own self; his family relationships, his strength of character, his willingness to engage anyone and everyone in his quest. You sense how hard such a journey is; the loneliness of several weeks on a scooter, the uncertainty of what you will find. This is a rare book as it is readable for so many reasons: as a foodie, as a travel journal, as a social document and most of all as a good read. You can be interested in any of these or none to enjoy this.
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Format: Paperback
I read most of this book beside a pool in Sicily on a sad singleton's holiday and it was nigh on the best company and travel guide for the trip. It would have conjured the warmth, beauty and passion of the island on a cold winter day in Dorset but the poolside was good. If anyone is thinking of travelling to Sicily you must read this gem. So much useful and witty information.
I immediately fell for Matthew, we are of an age, and his descriptions of trials and tribulations on the way touched my heart.This is an honest, funny, laugh out loud joy of a book. The recipes are spot on too and you could and should eat your way around the island. Suddenly you realise how bad our ingredients are and how we have lost our way with food on a day to day basis, this will get you into the kitchen and off those ready meals in a trice. For the heat of Etna in the depths of winter there is little better than this.
I gave my copy to the tour guide so I have to buy it again, this book is like good food, you want to share it.
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Format: Paperback
Searching for a book that truly depicts Sicily as it actually is today, seemed impossible until this book was published. It is the only one that matched what we discovered whilst travelling there for a month. This and Midnight in Sicily are to be recommended as travelling companions.
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I hadn't realised that Matthew Fort is one of the judges on The Great British Menu. Read this book while on holiday in Sicily. Was very interesting to read while you are actually out there. We like eating local and it was great to be able to identify some of the dishes we ate afterwards, and I will try some of them at home from his recipes provided at the end of each chapter. Also gave pointers on what to see in particular places, as well as desciptions of how things are made eg Modica chocolate. Impressed my fellow travellers with details of how it is made that gives the chocolate its 'grittiness'! Matthew has a good writing style and it is the type of book that you can just pick up and put down and skip chapters if you are travelling to a particular area and read the others later. His reflections on what makes Sicilians Sicilians are very interesting given their patchwork of a heritage, but food seems to be what makes them tick.
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Matthew Fort explores Sicily on his trusty Vespa, Monica, and engages local people in a gastronomic exploration of their food and culture. There are recipes at the end of every chapter which offer the reader the opportunity to create a bit of Sicily for themselves, based on the evocative descriptions of family celebrations, simple rustic cafe meals, and rural festivals which Fort encounters on his meandering journey across and around the island. The only advice I would give is to leave space between chapters, or you may feel you have over-indulged (as Fort regularly appears to do). Also, vegetarians may feel slightly queasy at the frequent mention of pig fat! Overall, a very satisfying read which should encourage an influx of visitors to this intriguing island.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
when hungry! Well, he went off again - Sicily this time. - This book is a very good guide to all of Sicily's very rich culture; of course the 334 pages of paperback can only touch the surface of the island. The recipies are very much appreciated and inspirational.

You might like try to get hold of "A House in Sicily" by Daphne Phelps which is also metioned by Matthew Fort.
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Bought for a friends birthday and she loved it. We were on holiday in Sicily at the time and had chance to try some of the recommended delights. Just waiting for it to come to kindle and then I will buy a copy.
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Just back from 10 days in Sicily, and made time to read this book before I left. It provides an interesting insight into Sicilian life, or at least those aspects that relate to food. It also provides a worthwhile steer on which bits of Sicily to go to and which bits to leave alone. Now that I'm back, I think I must have eaten several of the dishes for which recipes are included in this book - so I now need to go back through the book, see which dishes I tried, and then decide which ones we might cook at home.
It might be an odd comment to add, but I was disappointed in the quality of the proof-reading. There were several occasions when I felt a word had been mis-spelt (or at least where I thought I'd spotted an inconsistency in spelling between successive mentions), be it a placename, an ingredient or an Italian phrase. I guess most people would not find that too irksome...
Anyway, I found it an entertaining book, worth reading if you're about to visit Sicily for the first time, though in various ways it is a bit unbalanced in the way it seems to skip over bits of the journey.
And yes, I enjoyed my 10 days in Sicily very much - early October and lots of blue sky and warmth!
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