Policies Of My Administration: Regional FoodsPosted: August 1, 2012
There are certain foods that are tied to specific geographic regions. When you think crab cakes, you must think of my home state of Maryland. The best clam chowder comes from New England. The Cuban Mix sandwich is a delicacy from South Florida (and Cuba, I suppose).
Barbecue differs depending on what style the chef uses – Kansas City, Texas, Memphis and North Carolina style barbecues are different foods. In fact, barbecue in eastern or western North Carolina are not the same dish. South Carolina barbecue? Forget it. Mustard based sauce is just not acceptable, but they call that barbecue too
I recognize the deliciousness of the cuisine particular to each region. Getting a dish that is created in the area it is native to is a real joy. People in those places have a vested interest in providing a dining experience that meets expectations. That is why my administration will enforce a policy designed to help regional chefs protect their cuisine and the dining experience.
The Recipe For Disappointment
I will use a personal example to demonstrate the need for this policy.
The Cuban Mix sandwich is a sacred thing. I’ve expressed my bond to the holy sandwich before. I’m certain I will mention it again some time; that is how this bit of heaven on bread affects me.
In the past, my adoration for the holy sandwich has caused me to order it in places that are not south Florida. This has always been a recipe for disappointment. The bread is never just right, and what’s between those slices doesn’t measure up. Disappointment is not tasty. It thrives on the anticipation of finding the real thing in an unexpected place. But Disappointment is smart, it knows that the real thing is not available in unexpected places.
Without The Seal…
So often, I talk to people who say things like “why did I order Maryland crab cakes in Iowa? I’m smarter than that”. All I can say to them is “I don’t know and yes, you are”. To protect those who order landlocked crab cakes, and other regional food mistakes, I have created my True Menu Policy.
It will be against policy for any restaurant to serve a regional dish (such as Maryland crab cakes) unless they -
- Are located in the region associated with that dish or
- Can provide recent affidavits from 100 natives of the area associated with the dish as to its authenticity
Either of these things will get that menu item my administration’s seal that says it is real.
Never again will you and I be tempted to make poor menu choices that harken back to favorite dishes prepared by chefs who understand those dishes.
A famous attorney once said “if it does not fit, you must acquit.” With my policy, you’ll be able to say “a menu without a seal does not appeal”.
Until my administration takes power, you’re on your own on this sort of thing. Remember, it is called New England clam chowder for a reason, nothing good comes from ordering Carolina barbecue in Philadelphia and there are no crabs in Iowa.