When I’m thinking back to restaurants I’ve been to and then think ahead to those that I want to go to I start to wonder what it is that makes me like one over an other, or have one dish that I remember over a number of others. I remember the first time I had a soft shell crab, a banana souffle from The Square, my entire meal at The Fat Duck and The Canton Arms’ foie gras toastie all with great fondness and I think my enjoyment was all down to the amount of pleasure I got out of these dishes; it is this feeling that I’m looking for when I go out to a meal.
Of course pleasure comes in many different forms, at least for me. I like to feel that my custom is welcomed and one of my favourite eating stories comes from when I went to the awesome 805 bar restaurant and after a few interactions with front of house they realised that regardless of being the only couple of white people in the place we were drinking the Nigerian beer and delving into the delights of the Nigerian dishes (mainly spiced meats and big warming stews, perfect food for this weather in fact) and they started giving us the best service at a restaurant I’ve probably ever had; ending in the line “you really know your onions” (talking about my supposed knowledge of Nigerian food – which was mainly based on guess work and that I knew jellof rice is awesome). It was a massively pleasurable experience.
Then there is the pleasure I get from eating something I’ve never had before and finding that it’s delicious. I’ve already mentioned softshell crab but there are also buffalo, lobster and one of my faves sweat-breads which I ate after I found out that they weren’t literally bollocks. Of course there are the times that I discover that there are reasons that certain foods aren’t that common or popular, I’ve never really gotten on with brain and constantly find sushi a disappointment but still – if you don’t try you don’t know and I am always more than happy to try.
Then there are of course those times when the food being served is just perfect and total joy to eat. A dish that reminds me of my younger days (spag bol), a perfect juicy steak (best I’ve had are in South Africa) or something so delicious that you smile once if goes into your mouth or in extreme circumstances when it’s put down in-front of you! These moments can happen anywhere, at anytime and at any place and this is why I enjoy food so much.Tweet