3- The biggest problem with the recipes, I think, is that the taste level and palates of the writers are just not that high. The recipes from a book like Simply French, any Ducasse book and even the most casual Gordon Ramsey books, not to mention various books on rather casual cuisine just taste a lot better when executed as laid out by the authors. It makes sense, since it was written by a technologist and two kitchen lab guys, but I guess I am surprised by how low brow a lot of the flavors are. And disappointed.
not to dispute this or any of your other assessments, but i do believe the two co-authors are chefs ... both from fat duck, among other places.