Friday, May 11, 2007

You might be a foodie if......

you can correctly match the word to its correct definition:

Foie Gras (pronounced Pho Graw)
a) A German pork sausage
b) Fattened Goose/Duck Liver
c) A type of sushi hand roll
d) A type of lettuce used in French salads

Beef Tartar (pronounced Beef Tar-Tar)
a) Filet Mignon served medium rare
b) Raw Ground Beef served in a special sauce
c) Beef prepared in a special tomato based sauce, usually served with sautéed onions and mushrooms
d) Build-up on your teeth resulting from eating too many hamburgers

My first job out of college was selling gourmet cookware to the rich and/or famous of Los Angeles. I spent long hours in specialty and department stores in the Westside of Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, and Pasadena trying to convince consumers to spend $400 on a cookware set. It was actually much easier than it sounds. Because of the brand and product I was pushing, consumers assumed I was a gourmet cook or foodie. The truth is, I was a much better actor. As they told me about the delicious paella they cooked last weekend or their search for the perfect tagine pan, I nodded my head with perfect understanding. And during that first job, I became what I call a wanna-be foodie. Certainly I have appreciation for good food made from the finest and freshest ingredients, but I think my equal enthusiasm for both Del Taco and Nobu’s restaurant eliminates me from membership in the foodie scene.

At work, I manage a marketing budget that includes a small amount of money we dedicate towards consumer advertising. Fine Cooking Magazine (FCM) is one of the magazines we advertise in. This past week, while at a trade show in Orlando, my colleague and I, went to dinner with an account manager from FCM. Knowing FCM and trying to avoid a four hour, five course meal at a French restaurant, I told her “We don’t need anything super fancy,” in the email I sent a few weeks prior to the dinner. The day of our dinner, I learned our spot for dinner that night. It was at ‘Norman’s” at the Ritz Carlton. Unless ‘Norman’s” was their pool side grill, I knew it was a destination for a true foodie.

As I looked over the menu, I was pleased to find that I recognized most of the dishes on the menu. For appetizers we shared foie gras, beef tartar, and ceviche,. I was embarrassed to ask, “what’s beef tartar?” After tasting a small bite, I was disappointed as I concluded that I really didn’t like it. In fact I had a hard time swallowing it and quickly reached for my sparkling water to rinse it down. Between appetizers and the first course, I thought, “I think this means I’m not a foodie. I knew I didn’t like raw oysters or caviar or foie gras, and now I don’t like beef tartar.”

After a full week of many delicious gourmet meals, I found myself craving “normal food”. I think this must be a sign that I am not a true foodie. For breakfast on the morning of our last day of the trade show, we jumped in the rental car and I announced, “we’re going to Cracker Barrel.” While I devoured my two eggs (over easy), biscuits and gravy, two strips of bacon, and sausage patty, I realized……it’s ok not to be a foodie. A wanna-be foodie enjoys the best of both worlds….and certainly never goes hungry because of it.

By the way….the answer for the questions above is B.

No comments: