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- I get so excited when I know I’m going to a good restaurant, then, when I do the review, I write myself up into such a frenzy that I have to go out and eat all over again.
- Some critics think the way I write is somehow disrespectful to food. But how can you write a restaurant column without being entertaining? You might as well not get up in the morning. People complain my sense of humour is puerile but the reason I have a job is because my sense of humour is puerile.
- My dad was undeniably famous when I was a kid — he was on Wogan and Clive James and the radio every week, but as far as I was concerned he wasn’t famous enough. My best friend was Ben Brooke-Taylor. His dad Tim was in The Goodies — that was famous.
- I wanted to be a great literary novelist so that people would eventually talk about Alan Coren the scribbler and father of the great Giles.
- The Jewish religion has it completely right in maintaining you should think very carefully about what you eat.
- I am very snobby. My family is Orthodox so I would never go to a Reform rabbi.
- Deep into his sixties (he never made it to his seventies), he would tap his fag hard against his brass Zippo like a soldier, toss it in his mouth, strike the flame on his thigh, spark it and exhale through his nose, then keep it clamped in his teeth as he typed, in line with the heavily marketed notion of the smoker as writer.
- On his father's smoking habit, from "Big Tobacco is still coming for your family", The Times (16 December 2023)