What to bite next?
November 25, 2012 10:57 AM   Subscribe

Food, food, food! Please recommend all the best food documentaries, similar to "A bite of China".

Inspired by this post, I watched the seven episodes of "A bite of China" subtitled on YouTube, and loved it. I followed related links from there to some short documentaries on Korean food, too. I want more! Please recommend some other great food documentaries. To clarify: not looking for political/social commentary (so not really interested in the slew of docus on Monsanto, GMOs, obesity, junk food, etc.), but just pure food, preferably in its natural habitat - i.e. traditional cuisines in the context of different cultures.
posted by Ender's Friend to Food & Drink (15 answers total) 33 users marked this as a favorite
Kimchi Chronicles (available on Hulu)
posted by Wordwoman at 11:06 AM on November 25, 2012

Juro dreams of Sushi is gorgeous, and available on netflix.
posted by ottergrrl at 11:06 AM on November 25, 2012 [6 favorites]

A few years ago Mario Batali, Mark Bittman, Gwenyth Paltrow, and... some Spanish actress (? I think?) did a series on Spanish cuisine called On The Road Again. I'm not sure if it's available streaming on any of the big services (netflix, hulu, what have you), but if you can find it I highly recommend it.

It also sounds like No Reservations was made for you. There are dozens of episodes centered around the regional foodways of all sorts of places, from New Jersey to Vietnam to Beirut and back again.
posted by Sara C. at 11:14 AM on November 25, 2012

It's a book, not a documentary, but I'm in the middle of this at the moment:

Dorothy Hartley's "Food in England".

It chronicles, with recipes, a (relatively) lost period in English food - the regionalised cuisines present at the end of the Victorian era, most of which wouldn't survive two world wars, rationing, and subsequent agricultural modernisation. Some of the best and most evocative food writing I've ever read. There was a recent BBC single programme, which might be around on the internet somewhere:

Programme description here [link contains picture of pig head]
posted by cromagnon at 11:50 AM on November 25, 2012

Was just chiming in to recommend Jiro Dreams of Sushi. Fits your description exactly. I watched it the other night with my boyfriend while we sipped good whiskey, and it was perfect: dreamy, sensual, and enlightening.
posted by grrarrgh00 at 12:56 PM on November 25, 2012 [1 favorite]

Three Stars is a documentary about the Michelin star system. Not as much food as I would like, but there are some beautiful shots.

And nthing Jiro Dreams of Sushi. I got lost in it.
posted by anotheraccount at 1:16 PM on November 25, 2012

If you're in the UK, or can use a proxy, this doc on BBC was good:

posted by mairuzu at 1:39 PM on November 25, 2012

another vote for Jiro Dreams of Sushi
posted by mairuzu at 1:40 PM on November 25, 2012

Response by poster: Great suggestions! Yes, "Jiro Dreams of Sushi" was what started me on this trail :) I'll be checking out the other titles, too. And I think I've seen Kimchi Chronicles on YT, as well; it's on my list next. More suggestions, please!
posted by Ender's Friend at 2:09 PM on November 25, 2012

Nthing No Reservations!
posted by biscuits at 2:51 PM on November 25, 2012

Kings of Pastry is about the French three day test/competition a pastry chef must past in order to be awarded what is essentially a knighthood of pastry making. It is surprisingly fascinating and gripping. There were moments I literally gasped out loud. I think it's still on Netflix instant.
posted by apricot at 2:56 PM on November 25, 2012 [1 favorite]

Not a documentary, but if you haven't yet seen Eat Drink Man Woman, seek it out.
posted by Bruce H. at 3:32 PM on November 25, 2012 [1 favorite]

The shooting quality is kind of amateurish, but I Like Killing Flies paints an amazing picture of a truly unique restauranteur, and of a New York City that doesn't really exist anymore.
posted by softlord at 4:03 PM on November 25, 2012 [1 favorite]

This may not be exactly what you're looking for, but I've been enjoying Eddie Huang's videos.

Getting High Off Asian Food with Eddie Huang (don't be a hooligan when eating soup dumplings)
Fresh Off the Boat with Eddie Huang: Bay Area
posted by Lexica at 7:46 PM on November 25, 2012

Not documentaries, but what about some movies that revolve around food?

Banette's Feast
Eat Drink Man Woman
posted by CathyG at 9:10 AM on November 26, 2012

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