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Omnivore’s 100, Revisited.

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this is a revisitation of a post i made back in 2008, when the Omnivore’s 100 was tearing up the food blogosphere. i don’t know how i knew then that this was the case, one month into my blogging existence, because i certainly don’t have any idea what goes on in the world of food blogs -now- . . . in any case, i thought it might be interesting to revisit, given how many times in the past year or so i’ve eaten things and had people be like “ew, why?”

this also feeds into some thinking i’ve been doing about the flexibility and contingency of disgust, that trust me you will hear about in the coming weeks…

devised originally by the people at Very Good Taste: The Omnivore’s 100.

bold indicates have eaten,
italics
denote that i have eaten the thing in question, but do really not recall it with any clarity.

1. Venison (not long ago i ate a caribou & kangaroo pâté [it was on sale. i am not an evil man], which my compatriot and i chose in lieu of the rabbit & grouse on the basis of her having too great an affection for rabbits. it was layered, and in the end she just ate around the kangaroo [a weak spot for things that hop, i guess?]. this has somehow become occasion for great giving of flak by some of my friends. i like to think that the arbitrariness of personal affection or cultural chauvinism does not greatly influence my food choices, but i can say that i’d have a hard go of eating something like cat, until curiosity and the principle of the thing won out. there is the cold soul of a rationalist buried somewhere in this rapidly dissipating body, and i shudder sometimes at the ways it chooses to express itself.)
2. Nettle tea
3. Huevos rancheros
4. Steak tartare (just last week. only exciting because eating raw meat seems like a dangerous opening of a door. i will draw the line at eating live octopus though, i think)
5. Crocodile
6. Black pudding (black and white, no less. for the first time at a farmer’s market in Paris, and most memorably since in a very burly white bean/blood sausage/pork belly soup a friend made to celebrate some Italian football victory the greater significance of which i had no comprehension. now if someone can recall for me the name of the chef who got embroiled in some big controversy because she wanted to make boudin from her own menstrual blood, i’ll owe them a coke.)
7. Cheese fondue
8. Carp
9. Borscht
10. Baba ghanoush
11. Calamari (from my 2008 post: “despite not really liking or eating seafood for the past five years, when i used to work in this Mediterranean restaurant i was a big fan of the fried calamari, but perhaps that was largely due to their similarity to onion rings and my attendant love of almost all things battered and deep fried.” i have since not only eaten, but developed a strong appreciation for the mollusc family, be they many-armed or but single-footed. one of what i believe will stand as the significant events of my return to carnivory was my realization last summer that the squid i had bought for bbq [when everything not bolted down is destined for the grill, as far as i am concerned] still needed to be cleaned, debeaked, and beheaded. luckily this is a less daunting procedure than it sounds, and quick as you can say forward, down, forward, high punch, i had joined the ranks of those who can say they have pulled the head and spine(al ganglion?) off something with their bare hands. Sub Zero wins.)
12. Pho (see “Shoulder, Tendon, Tripe” and “Forced, False, Fraught,” for the favour in which it stands)
13. PB&J sandwich
14. Aloo gobi
15. Hot dog from a street cart
16. Epoisses (on this one i remain uncertain, but i’ll leave it at no because i’m sure i’ve never tried it in its proper, French, unpasteurized form)
17. Black truffle
18. Fruit wine made from something other than grapes
19. Steamed pork buns (vegan and “original”)
20. Pistachio ice cream
21. Heirloom tomatoes
22. Fresh wild berries
23. Foie gras (from 2008: “honestly, i would probably have put this in my “never will” category had i not read an interesting, albeit not wholly convincing article on the ethics of foie gras just moments ago on Very Good Taste.” in retrospect, it is interesting that i had in my original made the provision for “never wills” but did not in the end so designate anything on the list. i have since eaten, enjoyed, and read still more about foie gras. i prefer it vastly to most liver pâtés, mousses de volaille, and the like, but will resist the pressure to make the “You can really taste the cruelty” quip. on which note, Dan Barber’s Ted Talk on this laissez-faire, cruelty free foie gras is quite interesting.)
24. Rice and beans
25. Brawn, or head cheese (2008: “i can’t say i’m champing at the bit to try this, but i can’t say that i absolutely would not try this once, at least, just for my own peace of mind. and you know, because eating grey matter gives you telepathy, right?” still no, because it turns out that brawn usually does -not- contain the brains itself (according to wikipedia, at least, but i literally just yesterday had cervelles, or calf’s brains, in brown butter with sage and capers, and it was delicious but nonetheless inedible. i’ll explain later.)
26. Raw Scotch Bonnet pepper (my current favourite pepper, although raw is pushing it)
27. Dulce de leche
28. Oysters (also only [raw] within the past month, along with brains and steak tartare.)
29. Baklava (2008: “at that same mediterranean place we used to keep pizza boxes full of frozen baklava down in the walk-in, and every time i’d have to go down to the basement i’d stuff a few of them in my pocket, hence my current intolerance for anything other than actually fresh or totally frozen baklava” possibly still my favourite dessert. donuts are not a dessert, btw. get your shit together.)
30. Bagna cauda
31. Wasabi peas
32. Clam chowder in a sourdough bowl
33. Salted lassi
34. Sauerkraut
35. Root Beer Float
36. Cognac with a fat cigar
37. Clotted cream tea
38. Vodka jelly/Jell-O
39. Gumbo (2008: “this is also a sort of half-yes, as the only gumbo i had was not traditional new Louisiana style, and had been cooking for maybe an hour, as opposed to several. this is another that i’ve had veg and non veg, the latter with sausage and shrimp.”)
40. Oxtail
41. Curried goat
42. Whole insects (2008 “no, but just yesterday at Hiep Phat market i noticed that you could by bags of dried whole caterpillars, which i thought was pretty cool..“)
43. Phaal (i swear to god i’m going to rectify this within the next two weeks. no more sleeping at the switch)
44. Goat’s milk (reared on this shit. that’s why cow’s milk tastes like water to me now.)
45. Malt whisky from a bottle worth £60/$120 or more (yes, god love me, i have)
46. Fugu
47. Chicken tikka masala
48. Eel
49. Krispy Kreme original glazed doughnut (2008: “i can still remember my first Krispy Kreme, fished out of a garbage bag full in a parking lot in rochester, NY“)
50. Sea urchin
51. Prickly pear
52. Umeboshi
53. Abalone
54. Paneer
55. McDonald’s Big Mac Meal
56. Spaetzle (2008: “my sister in law’s sister’s parents in law always bring this stuff to christmas dinner, along with their harsh, efficient, German criticism“)
57. Dirty gin martini (2008: “yeah, ugh, and never again. who would’ve thought a beach bar in a North Carolinan college town wouldn’t have had their shit together? i mean, it was Martini Monday, geez.” this is the subject of another major turnaroud. i don’t doubt that the martini i had in 2004 at that beach bar sucked shit, but i’ve since come to appreciate the charms of this gin, vermouth, and this drink. however, i hesitate still to order martinis dirty, purely out of my irritation with people who say “dirty” as if they were participating in some lascivious backdoor (in either or both of two idiomatic fashions) shenanigans with the bartender and just so mischievously wanted EVERYone to know about it. no, there is no surer spite than that by which you deny yourself things you actually want in order to slight someone who’s not even in the room and probably could not understand the mechanics of your gesture without 25 minutes of explanation.)
58. Beer above 8% ABV
59. Poutine
60. Carob chips (is this really  a must try? perhaps as someone who was “suspected” as a child of having a chocolate allergy and thus had to go several Easters and Christmases subjected to the privilege of carob or white chocolate confection only, i harbour some resentment, but i remain skeptical.)
61. S’mores
62. Sweetbreads (i always thought this was brains, but apparently it’s the thymus gland?)
63. Kaolin
64. Currywurst (also new to me, this totally rules.)
65. Durian
66. Frogs’ legs (you’d think this would be something that i’d remember, but as it stands, i am “pretty sure” that i’ve eaten frogs’ legs sometime in the past 2 years. don’t quote me on that, though.)
67. Beignets, churros, elephant ears or funnel cake (i would add beaver tails* to this list, although i guess that’s actually just another name for elephant ears, right?)
68. Haggis
69. Fried plantain
70. Chitterlings, or andouillette
71. Gazpacho
72. Caviar and blini
73. Louche absinthe
74. Gjetost, or brunost
75. Roadkill (last summer we drove down to a friend’s farm in Vermont for a black metal show in the woods. i ate nothing all afternoon but Vermont cheddar and every IPA i could get my by this point quite bloodied and grubby hands on, as blankets of fog rolled over the hills around us. just as night descended, someone ran out of the woods and whipped a molotov cocktail at the cube-van-sized mock church that had been built for the occasion, and simultaneous with the leaping flames, the first band commenced and a soft rain began to fall. by 3am i was eating an amazing stew of roadkill deer with some ageing hippies, and at as dawn broke i was tucked away safe from the rain, dozing in the back seat of a car with a beautiful hog-farming girl, listening to to Van Morrisson’s Veedon Fleece. that was a good day.)
76. Baijiu
77. Hostess Fruit Pie
78. Snail (see “If You Ever Need Self Validation…”)
79. Lapsang souchong (a few days after i finished my undergrad i went for drinks at the house of my “Women and the Politics of Difference” professor, and we drank 2 pitchers of sangria and an undetermined number of bottle of wine, sitting on in her backyard. i have a faint recollection of her saying something and being a little embarrassed by it, something like she was afraid of asteroids, maybe? i know it was in some way related to the sky we were staring up at. inevitably i was too drunk to bike home, so i slept on the couch, and she made lapsang souchong tea the next morning, and told me taht she picks it up every time she’s back in Montréal, because you couldn’t find it in PEI, quel surprise. it smells and tastes like a campfire.)
80. Bellini (see “When There’s No One To Blame But Yourself…” for a partial yes)
81. Tom yum
82. Eggs Benedict
83. Pocky
84. Tasting menu at a three-Michelin-star restaurant.
85. Kobe beef
86. Hare
87. Goulash (yes, and this was also the name for any pile of leftovers cooked up with mashed potatoes and then covered in ketchup, in my household growing up.)
88. Flowers
89. Horse
90. Criollo chocolate
91. Spam
92. Soft shell crab
93. Rose harissa (no, blast it, and i already loooooove harissa)
94. Catfish (this may not actually be true. i remember being at Fish Store in Toronto and trying to decide between catfish and grouper, but i don’t know what i settled on, eventually.)
95. Mole poblano
96. Bagel and lox
97. Lobster Thermidor
98. Polenta
99. Jamaican Blue Mountain coffee
100. Snake

better than my original score, certainly, but i’m too lazy to do a proper count. i still am not going to go out of my way for white clay, but i believe that if i keep on keepin’ on, eventually the things like snake, louche absinthe and lobster thermidor will wander felicitously across my path/into my craw.

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2 thoughts on “Omnivore’s 100, Revisited.

  1. Pingback: Pig In The City « still crapulent

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