For my mom’s and dad’s birthday, we went to Marigold Kitchen that Philly mag put at #2 in their list of 50 best restaurants in Philadelphia. In general, I like eating dinner at my parents’ house instead of a restaurant because then we can be more relaxed, stay longer, yell and laugh more obnoxiously, and drink as little or as much as we want, plus the food my mom makes is almost always better. But still, this was an experience that I won’t forget.
I can honestly say (as far as I remember) that this was the best restaurant food experience of my life. That sounds dramatic, but I just can’t remember a better one. It was basically 15-20 meals of various (all very small) sizes. I felt like the chef literally introduced me to the different possible tastes that food can have: from sweet to bitter, from fatty to dry, from crunchy to liquidy, from spicy to bland, from cold to hot, etc. I am insufficiently sophisticated in my vocabulary to describe the various characteristic of the things we ate. But I would summarize it this way: When an alien species visits Earth and asks how we (hairless apes) fuel our bodies, I suggest we take them to Marigold Kitchen. They will be thoroughly confused but may decide that human civilization is curious enough to be studied instead of completely annihilated.
Also, on a side note, I enjoyed the awkwardness of the hipsterish waiters and waitresses that have lived in this Alice in Wonderland of food for way too long and thus has completely lost any grounding in reality.
My Favorite Food
The experience of writing this blog has made me reflect on my relationship with food. I have had bad metabolism early on (meaning: I get fat easily). So, I was forced to learn and experiment with nutrition from an early age (wrestling didn’t help much with that either). The result is that I’ve developed an appreciation and taste for simple plain foods like steamed veggies, grilled chicken, plain oatmeal, etc. Believe it or not, I actually really enjoy eating those “tasteless” foods. To me they have a ton of taste. And when I do get a chance to experience something more complex and rich, it blows my mind.
In particular, more than any restaurant, my favorite food, throughout my life, has always been my mom’s cooking. In fact, every time I visit my parents for dinner, I’m nervous about the onslaught of the deliciousness. Unlike Marigold Kitchen, where the tiny portions are decided for you, in my mom’s kitchen the portions are up to me. My willpower often fails under such strenuous demands.