Saturday, January 22, 2011


I was laying awake last night thinking of a million things [how bad this week has been, our blogiversary coming up next month, how to narrow my topics on the blog and finally, pondering food thanks to a recent episode of Top Chef] when I decided I would like to go down a road I started to travel here: "Foodies."

I hate the term. It's pretentious, it's arrogant and it's 'clique-y'. I hate highfalutin. Hate. But the problem is, I love food. My husband, bless his heart, encourages my food obsession, fanning the fire with ultimate support and camaraderie. He is, after all, the reason for our culinary adventures in the first place. My honey went to culinary school after losing his football scholarship in college. He taught me to cook, he spearheads our food adventures and he pushes my palate's comfort zone in a way I greatly appreciate. These days, he's much happier back-seat cooking from the couch than doing any artful plates of his own, but a good 3 days a week, he literally brings something fun to the table.

I hate the word foodie, because it evokes thoughts of micro-sized plates and fantastically overworked fish dishes. I don't want to think of our 'love' as the copper Mauviel pans and Shun Edo knives. That said, I love Sur La Table too - I could blow an entire paycheck on french gray sea salt and Global knives, but I don't have that luxury. I have one good Wustof knife. I have a great Microplane. And some heavy pots and pans. It's about integrity. The really good chefs and the fantastic restaurants all stem from love and integrity, not money and grandeur (although if they are lucky - the get some awesome investors to provide the latter part). I love food, I love wine and I love watching and reading food content and dreaming about 4-star meals. We have our own bucket list of culinary spots to hit before we die. I just melt when I taste the refinement that you can only get at a top restaurant where the executive chef practices the perfect balance between restraint and flavor bursts. That's a form of euphoria for us. But we are working-class food fanatics who happen to know and love the difference between tartare and carpaccio and crave a good mousseline.

We both grew up in fabulous households where our Mom's cooked huge spreads for dinner. Every Mom I ever knew falls in to the same rut - tacos on tuesdays, spaghetti on friday. We try to hard to mix it up and try new things. We are constantly yearning for different whether its ethnic or savory cupcakes. I'm so happy to have a partner in crime on this journey. I bury my nose in Bon Appetit when it comes every month and covet wine from the Loire Region Valley.

I am quick to offer an opinion but I'm also open to re-reviewing. A recent work trip took us to PassionFish in Reston Town Center. My trusty housewife, friend and colleague Kate asserted that the sushi was to-die-for and the food outstanding. In my first trip 'round the PF block, I had tried their fish and the sushi - both of which were disappointingly "showy" for the money. This time around - I LOVED my dish. I still maintain their sushi is more American than I tend to like a sushi roll to be (I enjoy the truly Japanese approach) but based on the quality of the restaurant, I can imagine that the quality of raw fish is superb. That is sometimes more important than a slightly old tasting very authentic Japanese roll.

Our Culinary Bucket List:
Le Bernardin
WD 50
Per Se
French Laundry
El Bulli ***
Frontera Grill
Hot Doug's
Townhouse by David Burke (or Primehouse in Chicago)
A Girl and the Goat
Inn at Little Washington

I could travel the world trying Michelin 3-star restuarants. So far, I've only been to one, and that broke the bank. Literally. So I continue on my culinary tours and I will seek out perfection on a plate and in my glass, but I refuse to call others OR to answer to Foodie. I suppose instead of complaining about it, I ought to bring a solution to the problem.

How about President of the Broke-Ass Food Lovers Club?

Too long.

Poor Foodie?

Nope. could get truncated to Poodie - hate that.


Too Escoffier.


I think garden gnomes.

How about just food enthusiast?

Yep - that's it. There's my 'tag.'


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