Truffle Boy: My Unexpected Journey Through The Exotic Food Underground by Ian PurkayasthaTruffle Boy: My Unexpected Journey Through The Exotic Food Underground by Ian Purkayastha

Truffle Boy: My Unexpected Journey Through The Exotic Food Underground

byIan PurkayasthaAs told byKevin West

Hardcover | February 7, 2017

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"[Ian Purkayastha] has a true, deep expertise in everything he sells--caviar, truffles, fish. He knows the stories that we need to sell the stuff tableside . . . he can disrupt the entire luxury foods market."
---From the Foreword by David Chang

Ian Purkayastha is New York City's leading truffle importer and boasts a devoted clientele of top chefs nationwide, including Jean-Georges Vongerichten, David Chang, Sean Brock, and David Bouley. But before he was purveying the world's most expensive fungus to the country's most esteemed chefs, Ian was just a food-obsessed teenager in rural Arkansas--a misfit with a peculiar fascination for rare and exotic ingredients.

The son of an Indian immigrant father and a Texan mother, Ian learned to forage for wild mushrooms from an uncle in the Ozark hills. Thus began a single-track fixation that led him to learn about the prized but elusive truffle, the king of all fungi. His first taste of truffle at age 15 sparked his improbable yet remarkable adventure through the strange--and often corrupt--business of the exotic food trade.

Rife with tales from the hidden underbelly of the elite restaurant scene,Truffle Boychronicles Ian's high stakes dealings with a truffle kingpin in Serbia, meth-head foragers in Oregon, crooked businessmen and maniacal chefs in Manhattan, gypsy truffle hunters in the forests of Hungary, and a supreme adventure to find "Gucci mushrooms" in the Himalayan foothills--the land of the gods. He endures harsh failures along the way but rebuilds with tremendous success by selling not just truffles but also caviar, wild mushrooms, rare foraged edibles, Wagyu beef, and other nearly unobtainable ingredients demanded by his Michelin-starred clients.

Truffle Boyis a thrilling coming-of-age story and the incredible but true tale of a country kid who grows up to become a force in the world of fine dining.
Ian Purkayasthais the creator and owner of Regalis Foods and works with more than 300 of North America's finest chefs. He lives in New York City.Kevin Westis the author ofSaving the Seasonand has written about food and travel forTravel + Leisure, Condé Nast Traveler, Martha Stewart Living,andW. He splits his time betweenthe Berkshires ...
Title:Truffle Boy: My Unexpected Journey Through The Exotic Food UndergroundFormat:HardcoverDimensions:304 pages, 9.25 × 6.25 × 0.88 inPublished:February 7, 2017Publisher:Hachette BooksLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0316383953

ISBN - 13:9780316383950


Rated 5 out of 5 by from Super interesting! I first saw a Munchies video talking about New York's youngest truffle dealer; that was a couple of years ago. I thought it was interesting, but I didn't really think about it until I saw that this guy had a book. A book! New York's youngest truffle dealer had gotten a book talking about how he got to where he was!!! I was fascinated, and it is indeed a fascinating books. Telling us his journey to where he is today, the various controversies in the luxury food business as well as recipes in the back of the book, I was thoroughly impressed with this amazing story of a guy who went to New York and made it big--with mushrooms.
Date published: 2017-08-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Non-reader enjoying this novel I purchased this book for my boyfriend. We are both foodies and we love truffles! He doesn't read novels but he has been really enjoying this book. Last night he was in bed reading before me...I plan to read it next. He has laughed a few times and have googled and made mental notes to visit a few of the NYC restaurants mentioned #plumreview
Date published: 2017-04-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great book! Truffle Boy by Ian Purkayastha I just finished reading Truffle Boy by Ian Purkayastha and although there were times when I wasn’t sure if I was reading about his incredible life or a biology study of mushrooms, I found the book fascinating. There were times when I kept having to ask myself, how old is he again? I was so impressed with the determination and focus of Purkayastha that I checked him out on the Internet. His story is phenomenal and true. Truffle Boy is really about the power of positive thinking, having a wonderful support system from forward thinking parents and extended family and a lot of faith that much can be accomplished if you set your mind accordingly. I liked the fact that he was a misfit in school and had these strange culinary ideas and with the support of his family launched a successful business while still in high school. I liked the fact that his parents fully supported him and seemed to be part of the adventure, even when he was living in New York City and they were still in the mid-west. I liked the ingenuity of how a seventeen year-old could approach famous chefs and entice them to buy mushrooms from him. I felt his loneliness in New York, I think partly because the family he was so close to was still in the mid-west. But, most importantly, I liked and admired his sheer incredibly focused determination. I felt I was just getting to know Purkayastha when the book ended. His story doesn’t end because at the ending of the book he is only about twenty-two. As amazing as Purkayastha’s story is, I was shattered by the corruption in the high-end specialty food market. I think it took a lot of courage to tell this side of the business. And, it made we wonder, do we really know where the food we eat originates? Purkayastha taught me to not only look at the front of food labels but also at the ingredient list as often the true contents are stated with their Latin names, and this can lead to knowledge of the real country of origin. I am not sure that I will ever be following Purkayastha’s footsteps of foraging for wild edible plants; but, his story has left me with the feeling that I too can accomplish something spectacular. And, I think inspiration is the true point of his book. I think Truffle Boy should be part of high school curriculums.
Date published: 2016-07-24

Editorial Reviews

"Truffle Boy demystifies...theworld of luxury food, [but] Purkayastha's enthusiasm rings most clearly whenhe's writing about his time out in the field gathering wild plants andrarities, from the hills around his family's home in Huntsville, Arkansas, tothe forests of India."-Garden & Gun