Gourmet  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
"Gourmet was rendered respectable by Monsieur Grimod de la Reynière, whose Almanach des Gourmands, essentially the first restaurant guide, appeared in Paris from 1803 to 1812. "

A gourmet is a person with a sensitive and discriminating palate, and who is knowledgeable in fine food and drink or haute cuisine. The word is from the French gourmet, a valet in charge of the wines. It is often used as an adjective for meals of especially high quality, whose makers or preparers have used special effort or art in presentation or cooking the meal, or for facilities equipped for preparing such meals, such as a restaurant. The term and the practice may have negative connotations of elitism or snobbery, but is often used positively to describe people of refined taste and passion.

Gourmet is often used to modify another noun: gourmet cooking; gourmet restaurants. (French, from Old French, alteration (influenced by gourmand, glutton; see Gourmand) of groumet, servant, valet in charge of wines, from Middle English grom, boy, valet.) Usage note: A gourmet is a person with discriminating taste in food and wine, as is a gourmand. Gourmand can also mean one who enjoys food in great quantities. An epicure is much the same as a gourmet, but the word may sometimes carry overtones of excessive refinement.

Foodie is often used by the media as a conversational synonym for gourmet. The word was coined synchronously by Gael Greene and by Paul Levy and Ann Barr, co-authors of The Official Foodie Handbook (1984). But there are important distinctions to be made between the two terms. Some gourmets would not consider themselves foodies and many foodies would not consider themselves gourmets. Generally speaking, a foodie is a person who has a special interest in food, even foods at which a self-identified gourmet would turn up his nose.

Certain events such as wine tastings and bake-offs cater to people who consider themselves gourmets and foodies, while publications such as Gourmet Magazine often serve gourmets with food columns and features.

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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Gourmet" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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