Monday, August 21, 2006

Keeping You Regular

In this fast-paced, high-turnover world, some of my favorite foodie moments are when I am recognized, at my favorite food stops, as a Regular Customer.

It makes me feel like my loyalty to their good product has been rewarded, and that I've been elevated from Faceless Anonymous Consumer to That Girl Who Always Buys One Pound of Pistachios.

Plus, the vendors then smile more and ask how I am, and that just makes for a more civil society.

Foodgoat and I are regulars at several West Side Market stands, Stevenson's (Bruce even knows our "usual"!), and Eat at Joe's. And the Warehouse Beverage, I think.

Can one be a Regular at a national chain? First of all, I wouldn't want to go to most even on an occassional basis, but second of all, with their rate of turnover, you wouldn't be recognized even if you did go often. And there just wouldn't be the same cache to being a regular at Starbucks as being a regular to Cheers.

Urban Monarch has a pretty good compendium of attaining Regularity.

Good advice include visiting the same restaurant three times in the first month, then once a month ongoing at least, bring other people there, and being generally courteous.

Foodgoat would add being looking distinctive helps with being a memorable customer, as in "That Handsome Guy Who Wears Black" and (this being Cleveland) "That Oriental Girl in Glasses".

Also, order the exact same thing every time, thereby establishing your "usual". Oh, and ask for suggestions or recommendations - they'll give you the inside track of what's good.

And in other news....

Really long teapot spouts in China!
Basil famine in Genoa!
Geoffrey Chaucer hath an Exboxe!

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Turkey Lurkey

The commute to work often includes a particular suburban, tree-lined, intersection, which has been distinguished lately by an unusual inhabitant:

See it? Here's a closer look:

Say hello to Marvin. Marvin the Wild Turkey that a Few Months Ago Moved Into A Local Intersection From God Knows Where. At least that's what we call him. He just hangs out in the neighborhood, miles from any Ohio rural roads, watching the commute from the grassy part of the intersection.

The Cleveland Plain Dealer featured him a few weeks ago in the Metro section, and apparently some residents don't know what turkeys look like, because Marvin was variously reported to police as an ostrich or a kangaroo.

You can't blame them too much, considering that the turkey most of us are familiar with looks like:

These domesticated turkeys from the giant ConAgra factories probably looked no more similar to Marvin when they were alive. Domesticated turkeys are bred for HUGE, MASSIVE, WHITE breasts that Americans love so much. The result is that domesticated turkeys are so freakishly shaped that the nature's course is physically impossibly, and all turkey eggs have to be fertilized by artificial insemination for the hatchery.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Next stop, Liberte!

>Today's second breakfast (the first being an Eggo waffle stuffed into my mouth on my way out the door) was raspberry goat yogurt made by Candian dairy company Liberte.

Having made my own yogurt in the past, I'm much more discriminating in my commercial yogurts. Almost all of the major brands are weirdly solid and gaggingly sweet, so Liberte's light flavor and texture is a relief. There wasn't any goatishness to the flavor, though having never had goat milk, I'm not sure if it supposed to or not.

Foodgoat favors raspberry yogurt almost exclusively, but I liked Liberte's honey flavored yogurt even better - especially soothing and smooth when one is facing piles of work first thing in the morning.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006


Yes, I know that the comments have not worked for many a moon. I have tried to fix it but the spammers may have finally dealt a death blow while the help forums for Enetation have now gone AWOL. The old comments are still there, they just refuse to show up properly like they are supposed to. Until something bright and ingenius occurs to me and lets me recover our precious previous comments, comments are now being provided by Blogger. Carry on!

Monday, August 14, 2006

Looney Tuna

Foodgoat has cooked for THREE NIGHTS IN A ROW! Hallelujah!

Check out yesterday's meal - seared tuna on saffran rice with grilled asparagus. Everything was very fresh, and quite delicious.

I'm not a fan of the raw food thing, because cooked food, as a general rule, licks the stuffing out of raw food as far as taste and digestibility go. But sushi quality tuna and crisp, not limp, asparagus rock when they're on the raw side.

Thursday, August 3, 2006

Mamas, don't let your babies grow up to play Warcraft

It has now been a WHOLE WEEK since Foodgoat declared himself done with playing Warcraft and quit cold turkey.

Thus far, withdrawal effects have been minimal (he has checked himself into the methodone program known as XBox 360). And if his rehab sticks, he may be one day be the fully functional Foodgoat again. Meaning, cooking adventures may start up again in earnest. One can't fully inhabit the kitchen if one is playing five days a week.

Perhaps he could also use more inspiration. And today I stumbled upon someone who might be a man after Foodgoat's own heart: Anthony Bourdain.
Although he's a giant among foodies, I thought he was just some snobby French chef, so I never saw his show, nor did I ever read "Kitchen Confidential". Alas, little did I know that his philosophy of food fit so closely to our own. Eat for pleasure. Try everything. Relationships are built over shared meals. Rachael Ray is the devil.

His talk with the Commonwealth Club of California that he completely won me over (listen to it here), talking about stuff from favorite meals, the Food Network, immigration policy, foie gras, and Mario Battali.

Now excuse while I run out to get a copy of ">Kitchen Confidential so I can read it out loud to Foodgoat.