If you're a fan of smart and cool and weird and lively conversations about food and culture, this is the place. We interview the most interesting characters in the world of food, media, and cookbooks and release episodes several times a month. The program is co-hosted by TASTE editors Anna Hezel and Matt Rodbard, and is sometimes recorded live at Books Are Magic in Brooklyn, NY. Visit TASTE online: tastecooking.com
Archestratus is Paige Lipari’s Greenpoint, Brooklyn, café and cookbook store. For over six years, the store—stacked neatly with copies of new and used titles, as well as dusty magazines and long-forgotten reference materials, with a stellar Sicilian restaurant attached—has become one of New York City’s go-to spots for exceptionally curated book browsing paired with molten arancini. In this episode, we speak with Lipari about how one of the country’s finest cookbook stores survived the pandemic—and eventually grew, with a recent expansion. We also talk about many of her favorite fall cookbooks, just in time for the holiday book buying season. Have you picked up a title today? Archestratus will have what you are looking for.
Also on the show, we speak with Cathy Erway. She’s a journalist, podcast hosting legend, and TASTE columnist. We talk about some of her recent work, including stories about sugar, sesame oil, and chile powder. We also discuss her recent cookbook collaboration, and the process of collaborating on cookbooks with chefs more broadly.
Additional reading:How Many Chile Powders Does Your Kitchen Need? [TASTE]When White Sugar Won’t Do [TASTE]Spring for the Good Sesame Oil Already [TASTE]
Visit Archestratus online at: archestrat.us/
Vallery Lomas is a former Washington, DC, lawyer, a current New York City food writer and restaurant chronicler, and the author of a wonderful new cookbook, Life Is What You Bake It. Vallery also competed on—and won— season 3 of The Great American Baking Show. In this interview, we talk a little bit about her season of the show, which unfortunately never aired because of many allegations made against one of the judges. We also tackle some of the baking world’s biggest questions—we’re talking cookie vs. brownie and mint vs. white chocolate.
Also on the show, cohosts Anna Hezel and Matt Rodbard talk about one of the greatest culinary achievements in the history of food (at least to one of the hosts): ranch dressing. They discuss what defines ranch, the beauty of ranch on pizza, and how ranch may need a little PR. Well, here is some PR!
Additional reading:Vallery Lomas and Ruby Tandoh on New Cookbooks and Old Food Media [TASTE]Leah Chase Expanded Horizons for Black Women in Food [TASTE]Ranch Isn’t a Dressing. It’s a Lifestyle. [TASTE]
Buy the book: Life Is What You Bake It
There are plenty of things we take for granted about walking into a grocery store: the fluorescent lights, the astoundingly inexpensive milk, the neatly stacked boxes of Nabisco cookies. But as Benjamin Lorr uncovers in his book The Secret Life of Groceries, there’s more than meets the eye. Lorr went undercover as a Whole Foods fishmonger, boarded a shrimp-fishing boat in Thailand, and rode along with a truck driver in a quest to understand some of the unseen economics and labor that fuel our everyday commodities. In this episode, we talk about supply chain disruptions, neighborhood grocery tastemakers, and the origins of Trader Joe’s.
Also on the show, Anna sits down with author and journalist Leah Koenig to discuss the burgeoning world of TikTok and Instagram foraging.
Additional reading:It Was a Big Year for TikTok Foraging [TASTE]Benjamin Lorr’s ‘The Secret Life of Groceries’ Book Being Adapted As TV Docuseries [Deadline]
Buy the book: The Secret Life of Groceries
Our old friend and former TASTE columnist Priya Krishna has had a meteoric rise in food media, starting in the marketing department at Lucky Peach and going on to roles at Bon Appétit and, most recently, the New York Times, where she is a star reporter on the Food desk. In this interview, we talk about the new book she wrote with David Chang, Cooking at Home, and how they both set out to write a book that was original, opinionated, and clearly not the Momofuku Cookbook 2.0. We also talk about some of her recent stories at the New York Times, as well as in the pages of TASTE.
Also on the show, Anna Hezel speaks with Adam Erace, author of a recent hit story about the godfather sandwich, a mainstay in delis on the East Coast. We found out how the sandwich takes on many personalities—and was not necessarily inspired by the film that shares its name.
Additional reading:Was Cast Iron Almost Canceled? [TASTE]The Vegan Jerky Industrial Complex [TASTE]Why Do American Grocery Stores Still Have an Ethnic Aisle? [The New York Times]The Godfather Sandwich Is Everything and Nothing [TASTE]
Buy the book: Cooking at Home
Jesse Szewczyk is a talented food stylist, recipe developer, and author of a new cookbook, Cookies: The New Classics. Were you hoping for some inspiration for your planned holiday cookie swap? He has some really creative takes on classic cookies, including Smoked Butter Chocolate Chunks and Cacio e Pepe Slice and Bakes. In this episode, we talk about his unique creative process, in which he comes up with the cookie name first and then backs into the actual recipe development—a bold move indeed. We discuss his former life as a corporate recipe developer, helping develop concepts for major fast food and QSR chains like Buffalo Wild Wings, Sizzler, and the granddaddy of them all, Taco Bell.
Also on the show, cohosts Anna Hezel and Matt Rodbard talk about some of their favorite cookbooks, both big and small, being released this fall. They discuss books about Chicago pizza, New York pizza, Southern baking, sustainable meat, and the latest from Dorie Greenspan and Sandor Katz.
Additional reading:Brown Butter–Bourbon Rice Krispies Treats [Food52]Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies [The Kitchn]Parmesan Cheesecake Bars [TASTE]
Buy the book: Cookies: The New Classics
You may know him as the friendly face who joins Julia Child on-screen to cook crêpes Suzette with precision and to improvise with big hunks of pork in Julia & Jacques Cooking at Home. Or you may know him from one of the most viral omelet instructional videos of all time. But lately, the celebrated 85-year-old chef, TV personality, and author has been focusing on cooking what’s growing in his garden, painting chickens, and showing the internet how to prepare a meal on a tight budget. In this episode, Anna Hezel speaks to Jacques Pépin about some of these recent passions—and why nonstick pans are so key to making a perfect omelet.
Also on the show, Matt Rodbard catches up with Adam Reiner, the founder of the Restaurant Manifesto and the author of a recent TASTE story about the brilliant cookbook manuscript left behind by late pastry chef Gina DePalma.
Additional reading:When Jacques Pépin Made All the World an Omelet [TASTE]The Pastry Chef’s Lost Cookbook [TASTE]
Love this! Really cool insight and conversation.
Engaging and Educational, for sure
Love the deliciously wide range of topics, guests, and perspectives week after week....but (please, please, please) can Anna find a new rejoinder to use in her interviews besides (always, always, always) ‘for sure’? Sorry, but it cheapens the otherwise sophisticated conversations. Otherwise, thank you for what you do; the access you provide is appreciated.
Makes the drive go by so much faster!
Just listened to the Solomonov podcast on my last long commute. I loved it! TASTE podcast is so smart and funny... it makes my drive go by so much faster! The only problem is I get so hungry listening to these guys talk about food! It’s great inspiration for my home kitchen. Thank you TASTE! You guys are awesome.