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Old 01-13-2007, 06:46 AM   #1
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What is your best food-related travel story?

We all have one. You order something, and it comes out and you're apalled. The flip side is that you point at something, and it is the best meal of your life. Tell us about it!


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Old 01-13-2007, 01:06 PM   #2
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I don't know if this qualifies to your question...

Briefly...I was traveling in the Mississippi Delta for a company I worked for at the time...I went out to dinner at the local small diner..the only one in town where I ordered their "KC Special" that consited of a small top sirloin, baked potato, roll, and simple salad...very simple but actually very good...I also ordered 1/2 dozen raw on the 1/2 shell...When the the first two oysters hit my taste buds I said Wow!!! ...After the 4th one I ask if I could cancel the KC special order and order more oysters...they of course said yes...I think I ate a total of 3 dozen...They had to be the absolut best raw oysters I have ever eaten...cold, briney, full of flavor..everyting I want in a raw oyster! And I am thinking...I am in a small town in north Mississippi...I ask the owner about the oysters and she informed me that they had come in that very day from Abbeville, Louisiana...Of course that explained everything...
So the last place on earth that I thought I would find excellent raw oysters is exactly where I did find them!

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Old 01-13-2007, 01:15 PM   #3
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This is a funny story.

I guess it was about 7 years ago, dh and I were flying to Portugal. We were delayed a few hours on our first flight and missed our connection. We were rerouted through Geneva but that flight also was delayed and we missed our connection again! They wanted to reroute us but we said "no way". We ended up staying the night in Geneva. We didn't speak any french and ended up at this restaurant with a waiter who didn't speak english but did speak a little spanish. He told us they only had one thing on the menu and that is what we got. It was the most delicious steak with some sort of cream sauce and a huge pile of shoestring french fries. I'll always remember that meal and dream of it!
"There are only two lasting bequests we can hope to give our children. One of these is roots, the other, wings." http://aidancallum.blogspot.com/
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Old 01-13-2007, 01:27 PM   #4
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There was a period in my professional life when I traveled to the San Francisco area regularly. On one of those trips, I traveled with a Chinese-American woman. She came from a traditional background. Her parents ran a Chinese restaurant.

We went to San Francisco's Chinatown one day to do some sightseeing, walking and dinner.

I put the burden of choosing the restaurant and menu on her. We walked around for a while and stopped and checked out numerous restaurants and their menus before she finally stopped and said, "We'll eat here." I asked her how she made her choice. She replied. I liked the menu, it looked clean, the ducks hanging in the window were fresh and it's filled with old Chinese people.

We had a very enjoyable meal of duck, rice and vegetables.
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Old 01-13-2007, 01:35 PM   #5
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free bowl of dee-licious turtle soup at a French Quarter hotel where we were staying during Mardi Gras (the maitre'd had a crush on one of the ladies in our party)

freshly caught wild trout grilled over a campfire near Mesa Verde and served on toast (what got me turned on to trout and totally spoiled for almost every other kind of fish)
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Old 01-14-2007, 08:26 AM   #6
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I once had a male admire-er who wanted to impress me, so ordered steak tartare, after I had ordered it for myself. This was in Arlington, Virginia. I tucked in (I LOVE raw beef). Needless to say, my man (Polish, by the way) was way grossed out. I'm now happily married (25 years) to a man who isn't apalled when I eat my steak raw. Grrrr.
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Old 01-14-2007, 09:44 AM   #7
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Freezing cold in Kazakhstan (no kidding!) and we're served this wonderful steaming bowl of soup. Didn't know what it was but ate every bite. I asked one of the Kazakhs sitting next to me fwhat it was and was informed that it was borscht. I could not believe it as I thought that I hated beets. Well, that soup was so good that I went online and found so many different recipes that I didn't know which one to try. I found a Ukrainian recipe that was similar but still not quite the same but my DH and I have made it several times and love it. Didn't realize how nutritious beets are, either.
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Old 01-14-2007, 10:00 AM   #8
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This took place in October 2001, shortly after 9/11. I am on an organized tour to London and Paris. About 1/3 of the participants had cancelled out so we were left with some hard core fun loving tourists on this trip. Combined with the trauma of 9/11, the entire 5 days we were in Paris, the govt workers were on strike so ALL the tourist places we were scheduled to see, museums, cathedrals, opera house, were closed. I am tagging along with two couples for lunch in a cafe. Kate spies what she thinks is quiche in a display case on our way to our table. Our waitress does not speak nor understand English. Kate is having a halariously difficult time trying to order the quiche, which we later find out is not quiche. An elderly French gent kindly comes over to our table and says he sees we are having difficulty ordering and can he be some assistance. Toward the end of our meal, this elderly French gent appears again, is looking at his feet, looking very awkward and simply says "We Frenchmen, our hearts are with you" and he disappears. We are sitting there with tears in our eyes at this display of comraderie.
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Old 01-14-2007, 12:35 PM   #9
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Nothing too far out at all.

It was a number of years ago, long before Katrina, and we went to NO for a long weekend. Knew it was a party town but did not realize the bars were open at 6 AM.

Well we ate and drank and shopped (new bil was, and is , a displaced Cajun. We put together a lovely Christmas package for him and sil of local goodies.)

Then it was about lunch time and walked by a joint. Actually calling it a joint would be the equivalent of calling Mickey D's a four star Michelin place.

Undaunted by the appearance (maybe buoyed by the fact that the bars were all open, did I mention that, and one could only shop so long) we went in and had a fantastic meal. Later learned it was a famous NO restaurant. Go figure.

Very sated and happy we left and decided to walk about the Quarter.

And then we found it. There it was, just tucked into a notch between two disheveled buildings (aren't they all?).

It was a boudin stand.

Now that might not seem like a very momentous event to many, particularly to a Cajun who was weaned on the stuff, but we had never had the McCoy.

We had made some ourselves, a number of times, but how can one judge ones own product having not tasted the original? (Bil was 800 miles away so could not use him as a judge).

We thought our attempts were tasty, maybe even a tad better than that, but would a Cajun approve of our efforts, laugh, or hurl?

One of our missions in going to NO was to try true boudin. OK, OK, it was not like searching for the Holy Grail, but it was something to strive for.

But no one could tell us where to find any. The concierge at the hotel sort of snorted and said that was Cajun (which we knew) and NO was Creole (which we also knew), and implied boudin was po' peoples' food.

Both of us were raised on po' people's' food and became a bit offended. Maybe affected by the fact that all of the bars were open, did I mention that, I was going to reply to the concierge, but one of us smiled, said thanks, and got me away from the supercilious witch.

Anyway we came upon it, the culinary equivalent to us of the Holy Grail, a Boudin Stand.

Although we had just eaten every variation of New Orleans fare at the (very, very famous, but what did we know) greasy spoon we had to try it.

Culinary kismet only rarely exposes itself and when it does I don't care if I am looking like one those alligators at a Florida gator place with half uneaten fish sticking out of my mouth, we were going to have the boudin.

Found it tasty, even delectable. And it tasted just like the stuff we had made. Yippee!

I have no idea how Julius Caesar felt after one of his victories, or how General McArthur felt upon returning to the Plillipines.

But it was a victory to us.

Went back the next day and could not find it. Am pretty good with directions, show me a place once and I have it. Just the way I am built.

But there was just not a notch beteen any buildings we could find.

Asked about a bit and no one ever heard of a boudin stand.

In fact, no one could ever remember having heard of a boudin stand.

It may seem a bit wierd and it does to us too. And yes, the bars were open (did I mention that?), but this really happened.

The morning we left we had the cab stop at the local grocer and picked up some genuine boudin. It was good but not the stuff we put out.

That is almost the most unusual food experience ai can think of when we were on the road.

And did I mention the bars were open?
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Old 01-14-2007, 12:52 PM   #10
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What a fascinating and funny story!!! I am so happy for ya'lls 'victory"

If you are ever in south Louisiana again...go west of the Atchafalaya..get off the main roads...find a little store at a cross roads...go in buy the boudin and a cold beer...Victory again!!!

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