As we rush to the finish off the first decade of the twenty second century we have to pause and think about what gastronomic baggage we are taking with us: what is new, what is old, what is bad and what is good.
These wine and food notes are from a modern day Marco Polo who has traveled the global trade roads in the last half a century. It is not meant as a criticism and should be just an observation of one man who has spent a lot time in local hotel lobbies and coffee shops, aeroplanes and aeroport waiting halls, or sleepless nights waiting for the weather to clear so I can take off or when the coup d'état is over and it is safe to move about get on with my business.
I am writing this from a US American point of view -– because as a traveller I am treated as an American no matter where I go: regardless of race, colour, creed, and/or where I was born.
Only in the
I see it from the point of view that Americans (the "United Statian" kind) have changed their and their palate in two ways in the last half a century. The two major changes in our gastronomic fare are multi-cultural fusion food preparation and wine as a beverage and as a complement to food.
But, let us not complicate things in this year's first edition.
Let us start with wine and food current trends.
M· Malbec wine and skirt steak.
o Meat lovers and wine lovers you are looking at a perfect marriage here. The wedding happened long ago in
§ Malbec has early French origins from the
The Argentines do not marinade their beef, but serve it with 'chimi churri' -– a parsley, oregano, red pepper flake mixture with red wine vinegar and virgin olive oil.
§ Although Spanish is spoken and native to
A· American ketchup or catsup came from the Chinese menu back in the spice trading days via the Dutch traders to Europe and then to
I do not know why the French get so upset; it was the Belgians who invented fried potato chips, not the French. It is best when fried in the beef suet and salt. Belgians like mayonnaise and not ketchup.
C· Chipotle salsa is now
Breakfast burritos are
· BrLunch at home: Serve with Mimosas.
Sparkling white wine and
Hamburgers have to go. Packaged ground beef, off the menu! You will get e-coli unless you cook the burgers until internal temperature of 160 F. Cholesterol prone and overweight Americans have to give up hamburgers. This is a must. If you are more than 21 in age, you must have a prepackaged hamburger and make sure you have a glass of Zinfandel to wash it down. Substitute turkey. You will hardly taste the difference.
Around the world everyone knows the old adage. American exports, blue jeans, fast food and rock n' roll....
It is great to have medicine say you can drink wine, but do not abuse it. Seriously, we should think about drinking only two normal wine glasses per day. No more. Discipline, that is self discipline. I should not have to tell you that. Have wine with food. Not before or after except for celebration, or a special day. OK, limit those special days.
What is good?
On the wine side, the Old World and the New World are neck and neck in creating quality great wines. As an old mentor said, 'Wines are like horse races. So we all do not bet on the same horse.'
When entertaining and for those special days, learn about the foods you like and what wines go best. It is fun, and it is social.
Our next adult generations are very smart and have been able to explore these new tastes. They are well educated and they are experimenting with fusion food and new wine varietals.
o CChilean and
'On croit avaler le bon Dieu en coulottes de velours.' That translates to 'One seems to have swallowed the Lord himself wearing velvet pants.'