The Foodie Report
Ruminations on food, cooking in and eating out in our area.

It's entirely possible to be a vegetarian in Porkopolis. Pop culture reporter Lauren Bishop blogs about products, recipes and restaurants she's tried for others who eat meat-free. E-mail her at lbishop@enquirer.com.

Nicci King is an unabashed foodie and the Lifestyle/Food editor in The Enquirer's features department. She loves to discover new food faves, and she's on a daily quest to answer one burning question: What's for dinner? E-mail her at nking@enquirer.com.

Enquirer Weekend editor Julie Gaw tends to order the same dish every time she eats at a restaurant, but periodically ventures out to discover something new and fabulous. After living in China, Hong Kong, the Philippines and Thailand for more than 8 years, she craves tasty Asian food. E-mail her at jgaw@enquirer.com.

Food/dining writer Polly Campbell loves every quirk and secret of Cincinnati's food personality, and is on a constant lookout for something good to eat. Keep an eye out for her restaurant picks, or see how she's progressing toward becoming famous for her apple pie. E-mail her at pcampbell@enquirer.com.

Communities reporter Rachel Richardson is on a mission to prove vegetarians eat more than lettuce. She shares both her graduate work on American food culture and food-related news.. E-mail her at rrichardson@enquirer.com.

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Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Back in Town:

I'm back, after a two-week vacation (and back from that week after, when your mind stays on vacation.) After dropping off our daughter at college in Boston, we spent four days in Wellfleet on Cape Cod. We did a lot of vacationy things--but most notably ate oysters. (and lobster and scallops and bluefish and clams and mussels and lots and lots of French fries.) I couldn't get enough of them there. They way they slide down your throat like a silk scarf, the way they taste a little metallic, and just like the way the ocean feels. I've always found it hard to describe eating oysters--I was trying to tell a friend, and she quoted someone doing it perfectly: Seamus Heaney in his poem "Oysters."
". . . . my tongue was a filling estuary,
My palate hung with starlight
as I tasted the salty Pleiades. . . . . "

I would be happy to eat oysters only on Cape Cod or similar oceany places if I could go often enough, but with Washington Platform up Elm St., McCormick and Schmick's a few blocks away and Mitchell's just across the river, it's nice to know I could hang my palate with starlight about any time I wanted. After all, oysters have long been transported far from the ocean.

The other significant food I ate in Massachussetts was Grape-Nut pudding. It's a baked, eggy custard with Grape-Nuts forming a sort of soggy crust along the bottom. Very nursery-food, rather bland, but with a fortifying hit of the whole grain. Perhaps, though, it truly does need to be eaten in New England to be appreciated.


at 4:17 PM Anonymous Schotzie03 said...

Eating oysters in the midwest barely two weeks into September is poetry of a different sort. What rhymes with, 'vomit'?

at 6:02 PM Blogger Cin Twin1 said...

Oysters, YUM! We had a saying in the south that you should only eat oysters in months that end in "R". I guess that is when they are in their peak season? In college, I went to a few Oyster Roasts.....what a fun atmosphere! Basically it involved steaming oysters, dumping them on a table made from saw horses and plywood, and enjoying those delicacies on a saltine cracker with some cocktail sauce. A swig a beer washed it down, and you are in heaven!

at 11:24 PM Anonymous midwest transplant said...

Do you ever go back and answer your comments? Hoping so!

at 10:30 AM Blogger Polly Campbell said...

Well, I wasn't eating them in Cincinnati, I was in Wellfleet. I don't think there's anything inherently wrong with eating oysters in the Midwest: they can be shipped safely, and they're still alive when they're shucked. But they're certainly a food you want to know something about--where they're from, the practices of the restaurant where you're eating them, before you slide them down your throat. Not to mention knowing your own risk factors. I remember the first time I really got to love oysters was in in Louisiana one December trip to the Cajun parishes. I was five months pregnant. BAD IDEA, I know realize.

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