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  • Writer's pictureMax Sinsheimer

Sold! The Undiscovered Food Stories of Northern Portugal (by Sonia Andresson Nolasco and Gabriella O

I'm delighted to announce the sale of The Undiscovered Food Stories of Northern Portugal, by Sonia Andresson Nolasco and Gabriella Opaz, to Agate Publishing's food- and drink-focused Surrey Books imprint. Here's the Publisher's Marketplace deal memo: founder Gabriella Opaz and journalist Sonia Andresson Nolasco's THE UNDISCOVERED FOOD STORIES OF NORTHERN PORTUGAL, weaving the full tapestry of the region's culinary heritage as told through the life and food stories of the multigenerational vendors inside Porto's Mercado do Bolhão, the oldest open air food market in Europe, to Jessica Easto at Agate Surrey, in a nice deal, for publication in Fall 2018, by Max Sinsheimer at Sinsheimer Literary (World except Portugal).

This book was clearly a passion project for Sonia and Gabriella, who spent three years getting to know nearly 100 vendors inside the market. Neither a traditional cookbook, nor pure culinary anthropology, the book that emerged from their experiences blends culinary history, human narratives about the Bolhão Market vendors, recipes in the rarely recorded oral “grandmother recipe” tradition, Porto restaurant recommendations, and on every page a cry for the preservation of traditional markets as a model for the interconnectedness of people and food. There is a Foreword by José Avillez, an Afterword by Rui Paula (Porto’s most acclaimed chef), and in between more than 200 stunning photographs taken by Ryan Opaz, Gabriella's husband, bringing to life the vendors, the foods, and the surrounding lands of Northern Portugal.

The Undiscovered Food Stories of Northern Portugal was originally published by a small Portuguese press, Oficina do Livro, and my goal was to give Sonia and Gabriella the wider distribution that I felt the book deserved by finding an English-language publisher. It is not an easy book to profile or categorize, and it was in some respects my most difficult sale yet, but well worth the effort to see it land with a terrific publisher and a communicative and wonderful editor, Jessica Easto.

Here's an oversaturated image of the market, Porto's Mercado do Bolhão, the oldest open-air food market in Europe:

And a few from inside the market:

And finally, here's a short on-site video that Sonia and Gabriella recorded for the release of the Livro edition:

Congratulations to Sonia, Gabriella, and Ryan!!!

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