Reading Mr. Cowen is like pushing a shopping cart through Whole Foods with Rush Limbaugh. The patter is nonstop and bracing. Mr. Cowen delivers observations that, should Alice Waters ever be detained in Gitmo, her captors will play over loudspeakers to break her spirit.
To give Mr. Cowen his due, he made me smile a few times. When choosing a restaurant, he suggests that if the people inside look happy, “run the other way.” He prefers spots where the diners “appear to be fighting and pursuing blood feuds.” Bitterness and gloom bespeak seriousness of purpose.
Yet I felt gloomy reading “An Economist Gets Lunch.” It’s an argument for exoticism that tastes like paste.
“A Contrarian Chowhound Weighs In,” by Dwight Garner, The New York Times, April 10, 2012
See also “Anti-Foodie Book Gets Sour Review,” by Alyssa Shelasky.