André Simon (writer)


January 24, 2022

André-Louis Simon (February 28, Paris 1877 - September 5, 1970) was a naturalized British French writer and food critic. Winemaker Hugh Johnson called Simon "the charismatic leader of the wine trade for most of the first half of the twentieth century in England. He is destined to remain, for all of us, the dear old literary man of culture for another twenty years. to this part ".


Simon was born in 1877 in Saint-Germain-des-Prés, in the sixth arrondissement of Paris. At age 17, Simon was sent to Southampton, England, where he learned English, and met Edith Symons, whom he married in 1900. Two years later, Simon became the London agent of the champagne company Pommery & Greno, based at 24 Mark Lane. Between 1906 and 1909 the three volumes of The History of the Wine Trade in England from Roman Times to the End of the 17th Century came out, considered by some to be his most distinctive work. Meanwhile, in 1908, Simon and some friends founded the Wine Trade Club, which organized tastings and technical conferences that anticipated the initiatives of the Institute of Masters of Wine by forty-five years. Between 1914 and 1918, years of the First World War, Simon was recalled by the French army to work first as a regimental postman, and then as a liaison officer with the British. In the course of the conflict, he wrote his most commercially successful book, Laurie's Elementary Russian Grammar. In 1919 Simon bought two houses: one at 6 Evelyn Mansions, near London Victoria station, and the other in Little Hedgecourt, in Felbridge, a Surrey village. He had part of the latter's garden transformed into a cricket pitch and open-air theater. On October 23, 1931, he, AJA Symons (he is not related to Simon's wife), and others dinner in honor of George Saintsbury, author of Notes on a Cellar-Book, which led to the birth of the Saintsbury Club, whose first important banquet will be held during the month of January 1934. In 1932, due to economic difficulties due to the Great Depression, Simon was forced to abandon his position as agent for Pommery. On December 11, 1934, Simon founded in New York City what would become the International Wine & Food Society, of which branches were born in the USA, Australia, and South Africa. Simon became president of the company on August 26, 1941. In 1952, Simon published A Concise Encyclopedia of Gastronomy, which sold one hundred thousand copies.During February 1965, the French writer instituted the André Simon Award for gastronomic literature.André Simon died in 1970.

Works (partial list)

The History of the Champagne Trade in England, 1907 The History of the Wine Trade in England from Roman Times to the End of the 17th Century, 1906-1909 Laurie's Elementary Russian Grammar, 1916 Bibliotheca vinaria, 1919 A Concise Encyclopedia of Gastronomy, 1952


External links

(EN) Works by André Simon (writer), on Open Library, Internet Archive.

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