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Monday, 28 June 2010

The Quotable A.A. Gill - The food & TV critic with an acerbic taste in insults

The Quotable A.A. Gill ... the food / TV critic with an acerbic taste in insults

A.A. Gill (born on this day - June 28 - in 1954) is the Sunday Times' resident Television and Food critic - and Adrian Anthony Gill certainly does not mince his words when it comes to reviewing either subject whether it be a stuck up celebrity or a stick of celery.

A.A.'s Television critiques ...

Red Riding - "Sean Bean is a performer who has all the dramatic range of a tiddlywink, albeit a very angry tiddlywink."

Pushing Daisies - "Anna Friel manages to be wholesome and erotic in an undead way."

Ashes To Ashes - "As D.I. Drake … Keeley Hawes couldn’t arrest an audience if she came on naked with a ‘This Way Up’ sticker on her bottom."

Dr. Who - "I’m put off by how much gape-acting David Tennant does. The mouth is permanently gurning. It’s like watching someone who is half Time Lord, half haddock."

Heroes - "I do wonder why they cast Hayden Panettiere as Claire the cheerleader. She is so short, the only thing she could cheerlead would be Subbuteo football."

Stephen Fry in America - "Throughout his career, Fry has relentlessly reached for the fey, light option, gone for all the gravitas of Noël Coward in a bubble bath with PG Wodehouse and the loofah of introspection that was Joyce Grenfell."

Are You Smarter Than A 10-Year-Old? - "Not being as clever as a 10-year-old is like saying you’re not as clever as a zebra crossing or a right-angled triangle or Gary Lineker."

Ray Mears Goes Walkabout - "Ray’s back in Australia and, as ever, lost for words. Nobody can confront the sublime and come up with a vocabulary as lacking as Mears’."

Britain’s Got Talent - "The skin-crawling Piers Morgan, Gore-Tex man, impervious to emotion or sensitivity. He seems to have learnt human as a second language, possibly from Derren Brown."

British Isles: A Natural History - "If Alan Titchmarsh wants to get out of the window box and into the big world, he needs to find some chiaroscuro and form opinions that don’t sound as if they came off the shelf from Homebase."

That Mitchell and Webb Look - "Mitchell and Webb are Little and Large with irony, Cannon and Ball with O-levels, Mike and Bernie Winters without Schnorbitz."

Countdown - "A programme that oozes despair like a badly applied tourniquet. It is the recreation of those who live on waiting-room time … Countdown is playing Hangman for shy suicides, and it could be prosecuted for assisting euthanasia."

Little Britain - "It is an idea that went straight from the screen to the back of the school bus without ever troubling the grown-ups, and it’s never been within hailing distance of a laugh."


A.A.'s Food critiques ...


"Christmas dinner: the single most disgusting meal ever invented with the exception of American thanksgiving, which, though similar, manages to be marginally worse … Nobody sane or loving could invent Christmas food from scratch."

"A lobster bisque ought to be the crowning glory of the potager. And this one was excellent. Silky as a gigolo’s compliment and fishy as a chancellor’s promise."

"The baby back ribs were like eating the evidence in a war-crimes trial."

"Winkles are bottom-feeders’ chewing gum."

"Bouillabaisse … this is one of those dishes that has a mythological culinary status. Cassoulet is another. And salad dressing. And the Bloody Mary … Bouillabaisse is still, for me, geographically specific. I can only eat it in the South of France. Anywhere else, it just makes me sad."

"I ordered a lasagne. There’s only so much you can do for lasagne in the looks department. The only garnish that would improve it would be a power cut. And you have to go gingerly. It can be like emptying Vesuvius into your mouth, turning your tongue into a Pompeian pumice mummy."

"Scottish smoked salmon filled with poached salmon was too monotonously huge; nicely made, but a bit like eating a soggy pink scatter cushion."

"Soufflé Suisse: a difficult dish that always feels a bit Edwardian and normally comes the size of an inflated crème brûlee. What arrived was hot egg with napalm cheese, twenty stories high. It was the Dirk Diggler of soufflés."

"Pizza Express is a sort of gastronomic post-modern version of the Morecambe and Wise Christmas Special. We’ve all been here and done that … Only Hannibal Lecter would conceivably have a favourite Café Rouge or All Bar One, but everyone has a favourite Pizza Express."

"The Rainforest Café menu is, almost comfortingly; exactly the same as every other theme restaurant menu on the planet. It’s hamburger and pasta caught between a Hard Rock and a hard place."

"There are many wonderful things about Egypt, but none of them is gastronomic. An Egyptian restaurant belongs on the same street as a Fijian ballet school, a Ukrainian tailor and a Nigerian interior decorator."


Some of the above quotations taken from  ... The Quotable Critic 

and some quotes taken from the future title ... The Quotable Foodie 
published by Blue Eyed Books

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