By Peter Mayle
With an up-to-date foreword via Peter Mayle, Acquired Tastes (originally released in 1993 as Expensive Habits), is a party of life's extravagances. Exploring a side of human nature that, even if mendacity dormant in difficult financial instances, is in a position to erupting with the trace of excellent fortune and the drop of a bank card. It samples the luxuries of Havana cigars, Parisian resorts, bespoke London tailoring, hand-made footwear, the right kind colour for a stretch limousine and weighs the price as opposed to the excitement of maintaining a mistress. Explaining the right kind technique to devour real caviar whereas delivering the listener with hours of natural, unadulterated escapism.
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Additional info for Acquired Tastes
I myself have been charged £150 for a cup of coffee and a ten-minute chat, but at least the chat took place in an office. A friend of mine was actually billed for a phone call he made to his lawyer inviting him out to dinner. I didn’t ask if there was a further charge for time spent eating of the free dinner, but it wouldn’t have surprised me. I don’t have the exact figures, but I am told that the current growth rate in the legal profession is, in relative terms, far greater than the growth in population.
Not all of it will be as French as the packaging would have you believe. Communist entrepreneurs have infiltrated the fattened-liver business, and foie gras has been slipping through the Iron Curtain to be canned and labelled in France. To be sure of getting the right stuff, check the label; if it’s a little vague about the country of origin, it’s possible that the contents, while still good, won’t be French. When you are sufficiently recovered from the shock of the price (a glass of champagne always helps to settle the nerves), you can decide how you are going to eat your fois gras.
Something was. Ingenuity came to the rescue, as it invariably does in matters of self-esteem. The status-conscious man decided that the way to show the world who was boss was to be transported in as lavish a fashion as possible. It was a notion that caught on. Indian princelings developed the chauffeur-driven elephant, with a penthouse balanced precariously on top. In eighteenth-century Europe, competition among the crowned heads to see who could come up with the most impressive set of wheels reached fever pitch.