The Butter Did It: A Gastronomic Tale of Love and Murder (Chas Wheatley Mysteries)
ISBN 10: 0061096253 / 0-06-109625-3
ISBN 13: 9780061096259
Publication Date: 1998
It is the eve of City Tastes, Washington, D.C.'s gourmet gala featuring the delectable handiwork of the city's culinary stars. Renowned restaurant reviewer Chas Wheatley expects to fill her biting Washington Examiner
column with reports of a sassy soupe en chamise
or a poor palourde en beignets
. But when chef Lawrence Levain's heart suddenly stops the night before the event, everyone is quick to name his soaring cholesterol as the culprit. Except Chas, whose discriminating senses smell murder.
Armed with her saber-sharp pen and critic's eye for things amiss, Chas circuits the restaurant scene, doling out biting reviews and delicious recipes, while probing into Lawrence's untimely demise. With a dollop of help from her loved ones at home and a soupcon of advice form a secret admirer at work, Chas's tastebuds lead her down a dangerous trail of revenge and murder, where her next bite could be her last.
Here's a mystery guaranteed to make you hungry--for the salmon-filled pasta squares that Chef Laurence Levain sells for $20 a pop at his Washington, D.C. restaurant, for the salad of curly chicory and thick chunks of country bacon that first brings Levain and American food critic Chas (for Charlotte Sue) Wheatley together in Paris, for the warm polenta salad and pan-fried three-meat dumplings served at the CityTastes benefit the night that Levain is found dead of an apparent heart attack and Chas--his lover--has to write his obituary. Washington Post restaurant critic Phyllis Richman certainly knows her food, and her skill at keeping a lively mystery plot simmering is almost as impressive.
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