Summer reading list blends food and travel

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Ready to hit the road for a culinary adventure? There's a stack of new summer road trip-ready books to help.

* The grandaddy and still reigning king of this category is Jane and Michael Stern's "Roadfood." First published nearly 30 years ago, the just-released 7th edition is completely updated and includes 200 new listings of burger joints, ice cream shacks, diners and other hidden foodie gems. Use this book to chart your course across the United States and you'll arrive home heftier and much happier for it.

* To get a taste of the communities along the Mississippi River, check out Alton Brown's "Feasting on Asphalt," the companion book to Brown's Food Network series of the same name. The book follows Alton's northward motorcycle journey along the river, profiling the food and people who make it along the way. The book includes recipes, maps and contact information for all the stops.

* Gotta get a burger? Check out George Motz' "Hamburger America," a state-by-state accounting of the author's cross-country trek for great burgers. The book is drawn from Motz' experience producing a documentary of the same name that featured eight of the nation's classic burger joints. The book includes a DVD of the movie.

* Hungering for haute cuisine this summer? Two new guides to eating your way through Paris aim to help. Alexander Lobrano's "Hungry for Paris" is an accounting of what he says are the city's 102 best restaurants. For a broader view on the city's food scene, check out Clotilde Dusoulier's "Clotilde's Edible Adventures in Paris," a guide to all manner of food finds, from great restaurants to markets to kitchen shops.

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