Becoming a Food Snob

I have never thought of myself as a food snob. But in college, my friends never cooked for me because they felt intimidated.

“I can’t cook like you.”

“But you know so much about food”

“You have great taste and I’m embarrassed to cook for you.”

They would say. Finally when a girl did cook for me, I slept with her out of gratitude. Well I did say I was going to bring dessert. Her food wasn’t Keller but it was cooked with care and consideration, effort. The fact that someone had taken the time to go get groceries and prepare made it lovely.

Over vacations when I stayed with friends, the cook of the house would make the disclaimer that the food wasn’t fancy, having heard that I love to dine out. But some of my favourite meals were in those very homes.

I love food. All types of food. I’m obsessed with the dumplings at my neighbourhood Chinese place in Brooklyn. I love fast food, one of my favourite foods is a hot dog. My boss was shocked to find out that I like Papa Johns pizza. Her taste was to the more refined and authentic New York pizza places around our office in downtown Manhattan. She rolls her eyes every time I bring in my leftover pizza for lunch. “I thought you were some foodie,” she would always accuse.

My brother had brought his family to Brunei to visit our parents. I had flown in a few days ahead. My parents decided that we would spend a few days at Brunei’s premier resort. This place was lavish. It felt like the sultan’s palace. They also had one of the best restaurants in the country. I was excited. My parents had called ahead for their tasting menu. 

dscn2238Appetizers were good. Beef and a seafood salad

dscn2242Soups in shot glasses? Please. Mussels. Nothing stood out.

dscn2248Flavorless beef or lamb which was very tough, tuna which I would have preferred to be rarer.

dscn2251Desserts were decent

The food was mediocre. They had a new chef, a very young man and had just changed their menu concept to something more bistro-like. Apparently haute cuisine wasn’t making money. I’m usually a voracious eater, a human Hoover. But I picked at my food this time, I admit with a little distain. I had just left the foodie capital of the world and was homesick. I think my parents sensed it. They were splurging on their son and he was leaving his plate half eaten, pushing the rest away.

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