The Taste of Conquest

The Taste of Conquest

The Rise and Fall of the Three Great Cities of Spice

Book - 2007
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Random House, Inc.
The smell of sweet cinnamon on your morning oatmeal, the gentle heat of gingerbread, the sharp piquant bite from your everyday pepper mill. The tales these spices could tell: of lavish Renaissance banquets perfumed with cloves, and flimsy sailing ships sent around the world to secure a scented prize; of cinnamon-dusted custard tarts and nutmeg induced genocide; of pungent elixirs and the quest for the pepper groves of paradise.


The Taste of Conquest offers up a riveting, globetrotting tale of unquenchable desire, fanatical religion, raw greed, fickle fashion, and mouthwatering cuisine- in short, the very stuff of which our world is made. In this engaging, enlightening, and anecdote filled history, Michael Krondl, a noted chef turned writer and food historian, tells the story of three legendary cities- Venice, Lisbon, and Amsterdam- and how their single-minded pursuit of spice helped to make (and remake) the Western diet and set in motion the first great wave of globalization.


In the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, the world's peoples were irrevocably brought together as a result of the spice trade. Before the great voyages of discovery, Venice controlled the business in Eastern seasonings and thereby became medieval Europes most cosmopolitan urban center. Driven to dominate this trade, Portugals mariners pioneered sea routes to the New World and around the Cape of Good Hope to India to unseat Venice as Europes chief pepper dealer. Then, in the 1600s, the savvy businessmen of Amsterdam invented the modern corporationthe Dutch East India Companyand took over as spice merchants to the world.


Sharing meals and stories with Indian pepper planters, Portuguese sailors, and Venetian foodies, Krondl takes every opportunity to explore the world of long ago and sample its many flavors. The spice trade and its cultural exchanges didnt merely lend kick to the traditional Venetian cookies called peverini, or add flavor to Portuguese sausages of every description, or even make the Indonesian rice table more popular than Chinese takeout in trendy Amsterdam. No, the taste for spice of a few wealthy Europeans led to great crusades, astonishing feats of bravery, and even wholesale slaughter.


As stimulating as it is pleasurable, and filled with surprising insights, The Taste of Conquest offers a fascinating perspective on how, in search of a tastier dish, the world has been transformed.

David Brown Book Co
The smell of sweet cinnamon on your morning oatmeal, the gentle heat of gingerbread, the sharp piquant bite from your everyday pepper mill.

Baker & Taylor
Ranging from the medieval period to the present day, a history of the international spice trade focuses on the involvement of three important European cities--Venice, Lisbon, and Amsterdam--charting the growth of the spice trade in relation to the successive rise--and fall--of the three urban centers. 30,000 first printing.

Blackwell North Amer
The Taste of Conquest offers up a globetrotting tale of unquenchable desire, fanatical religion, raw greed, fickle fashion, and mouthwatering cuisine - in short, the very stuff of which our world is made. In this enlightening and anecdote-filled history, Mitchell Krondl, a noted chef turned writer and food historian, tells the story of three legendary cities - Venice, Lisbon, and Amsterdam - and how their single-minded pursuit of spice helped to make (and remake) the Western diet and set in motion the first great wave of globalization.

Publisher: New York : Ballantine Books, c2007
Edition: 1st ed
Description: ix, 304 p. : ill., maps ; 25 cm
ISBN: 9780345480835
034548083X
Branch Call Number: 641.3383 Kro

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AngelaSchneider
Nov 05, 2011

One of my favorite books in the culinary history field. Funny, fairly accurate and even after reading it 3 times, still lots of new insights.

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