Eating and Drinking with Buffalo Bill
by Steve Friesen
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Pub Date 01 Dec 2023 | Archive Date 30 Nov 2023
University of Nebraska Press, Bison Books
Friesen examines the creation of Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show in 1883, in which Cody introduced his diverse cast of employees to dining that equaled America’s best restaurants. One newspaper reporter observed that “Colonel Cody displays no more care about anything than the proper feeding of horse and man.” Cody opened the first Mexican restaurant east of the Mississippi and introduced American foodways to Europe. Equally comfortable eating around a campfire on the plains or at Delmonico’s in New York City, he also dined with leading celebrities of his day. In the final section Friesen addresses the controversies surrounding Cody’s drinking, his death, and his ongoing culinary legacy. Galloping Gourmet includes an appendix of more than thirty annotated period recipes.
“After reading Steve Friesen’s deliciously written Galloping Gourmet, I wish I could go back in time to travel, tour, and dine with the West’s greatest promoter, Buffalo Bill Cody—and you will, too.”—Stuart Rosebrook, editor of True West magazine
“Buffalo Bill Cody nurtured his zest for life and that included good food and good drink. Steve Friesen brings to life Cody’s exuberance for providing the best food and conversation for his companions, whether sitting around a prairie campfire with scouts and Indians or dining in Eastern and European capitals with the rich and famous. Every fan of Buffalo Bill will love this book, chock-full of information such as Buffalo Bill’s introducing popcorn to Paris. Galloping Gourmet is a delicious delight.”—Bill Markley, author of Wild Bill Hickok and Buffalo Bill Cody: Plainsmen of the Legendary West
“I love tasting history as well as reading about it. . . . Steve Friesen has amassed a collection of William F. ‘Buffalo Bill’ Cody’s passions for food. The details are a wonderful piece of history that Friesen has documented for all to see and taste.”—Sherry Monahan, culinary historian and author of Shaken in 2020, but Not Stirred: Cocktails, Connections, and Humor
“Steve Friesen takes his readers behind the scenes, where readers encounter Wild West performers from around the globe, prominent journalists, royal visitors, and an international array of spectators, all of whom appreciated not only Buffalo Bill’s dramatic performances but also the exceptional meals he provided, ranging from grand banquets to various treats from concession stands.”—Jeremy M. Johnston, Ernest J. Goppert Curator of the Buffalo Bill Museum
Available on NetGalley
Average rating from 3 members
Buffalo Bill Cody believed in being the best at whatever he undertook, including dining. I had not read anything about this side of the western era's most famous cowboy and his team of entertainers. This was a new side of their life and times that most of us would not consider. It was a really fun book to read.
In Galloping Gourmet, the author traces Buffalo Bill Cody's transformation from a young farm boy to an influential man in many spheres. The author focuses on the ways Cody is introduced to the finer things in life and how he later impacts the cuisine of the time. I found this book to be a bit dry and sometimes repetitive. This was an interesting read.