Alex Prud'homme_8188

New Book Alert: “Dinner with the President: Food, Politics and a History of Breaking Bread at the White House”

DINNER WITH THE PRESIDENT is a narrative history of American food, politics, and twenty-six presidents, from George Washington starving at Valley Forge in 1777 to Donald Trump’s burger banquets, and Joe Biden’s “performance enhancing” ice cream in 2022. The White House is the most important home in the world, and the meals served there communicate many things: the meals our leaders eat, who prepares and consumes them, and the context of presidential gatherings semaphore one set of signals; the Chief Executive’s food policies send a different set of signals. Taken together, these messages touch on everything from personal nutrition to the evolution of American taste (squirrel stew, jellybeans, kale), local politics, global diplomacy, climate change, war, race, class, gender, and the like. At the White House, every meal, every bite, has consequences – some intended, some not.

DINNER WITH THE PRESIDENT is about of the politics of food and food of politics. It examines the primal impulse to break bread together (even with those we disagree with), how that impacts affairs of state, and the sometimes quirky tastes of First Families. I hope it will inspire people, especially those who assume history is “boring,” to consider the central role food has played in presidential history. I also hope it will encourage future administrations to highlight the food, cooks, and kitchens at the White House.

DINNER WITH THE PRESIDENT will be published by Alfred A. Knopf on February 7, 2023.

For preorders, please consult your local book seller or visit the publisher here: