Friday, November 18, 2011


    Subtitled “A Love Story with Recipes” this collection of recipes and observations is so much more than that - it’s an enthusiastic guide to the best in briskets,  rich and juicy with recipes, stories, humor and tips.  You’ll find everything from Temple Emanu-El Brisket (page 91) to Aunt Gladys’s Brisket (page 92) to Barbecue Green Chile Brisket (page 124) plus a great many more, and you’ll want to try every one.

    There’s a list of 50 Things About Brisket That People Can Disagree About, and suggestions for what to read when you’re eating brisket.  There’s even a listing of suggested wines (high and low in price) for each brisket.  Nothing has been overlooked!

    Now that we’re speaking of wines, Pierson recommended Frog’s Leap Rutherford Merlot - superb pairing!  This is a marvelous wine with tempting notes of rich black berry and traces of cocoa powder.  There is a rumor of ripened red berries and cherries abetted by a tad of mocha, herbs, and spice.  Find it at

    It goes without saying that in order to achieve optimum results with any of these recipes you must have the best brisket to be found.  Again, we followed Pierson’s advice and found Brandt Beef (  Amazing quality!  As noted by a Manging Partner of the Master Chef’s Institute, “When tested against competitors in their specific category, Brandt Natural Beef’s line rated highest in the flavor, texture and tenderness categories.”  We’ll second that!  Unlike past briskets, and we’ve had quite a few, Brandt’s brisket is vastly superior, ultra flavorful, juicy and fork tender.

    We’re always delighted when a cookbook includes sources and recommendations - we especially appreciate the above two that certainly added to our dining pleasure.

    Until reading The Brisket Book I never realized how many people thought they had the best brisket recipe in the world - do believe they’re all here.  One of these days I want to meet the fellow who said, “I gave up meat years ago, and I can honestly say that my mother’s brisket is the ONLY thing I miss.”

    Brisket reigns supreme in this 208 page volume enlivened with dozens of photographs and illustrations.  With this book author/journalist Stephanie Pierson has brought us the first and only book entirely devoted to brisket, and she’s done it with rare attention to details plus robust good humor.  Enjoy!   

    - Gail Cooke

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