I did promise to bring some of my favorite food stories to the table. This is a story from our recent trip to Germany. We were in the Bavarian Alps and stumbled upon a beautiful outdoor restaurant in the town center.
Once we sat down and got the prerequisite liter of beer (we were in Germany!), we found this little gem on the menu. The translated version called this "baked swiss cheese with fruit preserves". It was swiss cheese, breaded and fried, accompanied with some amazing sauteed apricots and plums and vingear-based cole slaw. The cheese was warm and oozy. The fruit were in a delicate sauce, seasoned with cinnamon. The cole slaw provided the perfect contrast to the cheese and fruit. I would never have brought all of these flavors together on my own and we almost breezed past this appetizer on the menu. Honestly though, this was quite possibly the most fabulous thing I have ever eaten in my entire life. I even sopped up the sauce with the endive that was provided as a garnish. After finishing every last bite, my husband and I sat in contemplative silence. I remember describing the experience to him as "spirtual". It was absolutely divine. We were sitting at the base of the Alps, eating a phenomenal dish and the air couldn't have been more alive. The last time I felt that high on life I had just jumped out of an airplane for the first time.
Food has a way of elevating the little moments in life and in helping to create the most amazing memories. That was is my favorite memory from our entire trip. At the time I wasn't worried about how many calories were in every bite or how I was seriously low on my veggie quota for the day; I was entirely focused on just drinking the entire experience in. It's not possible for all of us to live in the Alps and to eat baked swiss cheese everyday, but it is possible to bring a touch of those heightened senses to all of our eating experiences and to just appreciate the flavors, sights and smells around us. Let me know about your own favorite food experiences in the comments section!