Out with the old, and in with the new! Here are *eleven* things I’d like to see happen in 2009.
1) New takes on old styles. For example, I like tuna tartare as much as the next gal, but? It. Is. Everywhere. Try something new! Perhaps, like Randy Rucker, you could do a scallop tartare. Mmmm!
2) Tap water, please. Does anyone actually elect to have highfalutin water like Evian instead of tap? Don’t make me feel cheap by giving me the option.
3) Better food education. I am a teacher, and my students know jack squat about nutrition. Let’s teach cooking in schools. Revitalize school lunch programs. Plant more school gardens. And start early.
4) Family focus. I grew up eating dinner (a meat, a vegetable, a salad, and bread) with my family every night. With the economy as it is, restaurants should forego the fancy-schmancy and entice families with wholesome, affordable meals.
5) A broader range of ethnic food. I want Mexican food that goes beyond tacos. Indian that’s not chicken tikka masala. Thai food that puts Pad Thai to shame. And diners willing to take chances.
6) Environmental aid. Another wish is for the entire food services industry to pay more attention to environmental concerns and waste reduction. A girl can dream...
7) Fun and flavorful drinks. Mix it up! I love giving bartenders carte blanche to create the perfect drink. Mixologists at Bedford, Benjy’s, and Beaver’s are quite adept. Now. Let’s all try it!
8) More BYO joints while I’m on the drinking topic. Oh, and more affordable wine lists! And lower corkage fees. Hizzah.
9) Banana pudding. Oh, Banana Pudding, I miss you so much. Especially when you have Nilla Wafers hidden in your depths. I hope one day a pastry chef will miss you as much as I do and add you to a menu.
10) Regular prices. I’ve had my last $5 cupcake. It was delicious, and I savored every bite. But next time I’ll get a second sandwich and save it for dinner.
11) Old-school manners. “Food” is both a hobby and a career. So be grateful and gracious. Place your utensils on the plate when you’re finished so the server knows you’re done. If there are people waiting, don’t linger. Keep it simple, sane, and straightforward.
Am I asking too much? Happy new year to all!