Exquisite Exandria: A Feast for Critters

If you're a Critter or just a fan of the world building in Critical Role, Exquisite Exandria is for you.

If you're a Critter or just a fan of the world building in Critical Role and Matthew Mercer's often luscious setting descriptions, including the food, Exquisite Exandria is for you. This hardcover combines a cookbook with setting resources for fans, much like Heroes Feast did for the food of D&D.

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What's Inside​

Exquisite Exandria is available in three formats – hardcover, ebook, and spiral bound so it can lay flat. Written by Liz Marsham, the book is divided into chapters according the regions of Execandria – Tal'Dorei, Issylra, Marquet, and Wildemount. Then each chapter and many recipes provide insight to its respective region. Some “culinary capers” by The Mighty Nein, Vox Machina, and Bell's Hells are also scattered through the book, along with tributes to various characters. For example, you learn about how Jester customizes the classic spell that provides food and restoration. Hint: It involves sweets.

Sam Riegal and Quyen Tran wrote the foreward. Obviously, Riegal is there representing Critical Role's founders. Tran is an experienced baker who founded a culinary charity that raises money for regional food banks so she can comment as someone who creates and works with food, not just a consumer.

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The Recipes​

The recipes were developed by Jesse Stewczyk, Susan Vu, and Amanda Yee, and just the titles make my mouth water – Fried Chicken with Coffee-Bacon Gravy, Sweet Tea Custard Pie, Salt and Pepper Cheese Twists with Honey Drizzle, Popping Hot Chocolate Bombs, and much more. I haven't tested the recipes yet but as someone who both cooks and bakes, reading through the recipes makes sense. Anyone with moderate or better cooking or baking skills should be able to make most or all of them.

The accompanying photos are gorgeous and also contribute to Exquisite Exandria's hunger-inducing effect. The book is lovely with gold foil on the cover. In addition to photographs of the recipes, the book contains some terrific illustrations to further set the mood.

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Should You Get It?​

My one complaint about Exquisite Exandria's book design is that some pages have a colored background instead of white. While pretty, purple pages with darker purple lettering or blue pages with navy blue lettering look nice they don't have enough contrast, which makes them difficult to read. Since I know my own visual needs, I wanted to see what those pages might be like for the average person so I showed my review copy to a few people with better eyesight. They also found the purple on purple and blue on blue pages annoying to read, too, though it wasn't a genuine limitation for them. Still, I think the art director could have gotten results that were just attractive and been more practical by making the page colors lighter.

If you like fantasy-inspired cookbooks, Exquisite Exandria is definitely one to consider. If you're a Critter, this is a must-buy. If you're holiday shopping for someone to likes to cook, especially if they're a gamer or fantasy fan, this might be a pleasant surprise for them since it has a good range of recipes packaged in an attractive cookbook.

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Beth Rimmels

Beth Rimmels


I love a good cookbook, even though they always fill me with shame for all the delicious meals that I intend to make but never get around to.


Although im a cat lover with 4 cats myself, seeing the cat on the table with all the food on the cover art is like a huge food turn off - the cat can have all that food! :)


I got this book as an early Christmas gift from my fiancee, and I spent the next few days constantly looking through because everything looked good. We finally settled on making Pike's Purple Jewel Cake. This is a bit of a minor complaint, but some recipes call for ingredients that are sometimes not easy to come by, if your location isn't close to a major urban locale. Occasionally, some alternatives are listed, but not always.

In the case of the cake, it was freeze-dried blueberries. These are to be ground into a fine dust and is clearly what gives the cake its vibrant purple color. Yeah... A rural Texas town is not the best place to be if you're going to just decide you want to make this. We came across a bag of acai powder and used that as a (poor) substitution. While the cake was rather good... It wasn't purple inside. Or really have any extra flavor profile.

But... I still think this is a VERY awesome cookbook, and I think if you took out the source material it's derived from it would still be a great cookbook.

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