Interested in hearing what "first time" food experiences are most memorable to you. Perhaps your first taste of this or that food or beverage, perhaps your first exposure to a certain cuisine or restaurant...any first time experience that had an impact, good or bad.
I think of my first exposure to real Chinese food...first baklava...first eyeball,certainly....hard to choose, but I'll just share this one:
Fishing from the beach for bluefish, on a good spot, and only one other guy nearby. We catch some blues, there's a lull, we get to talking. As often happens when fishing, the talk turns to the best way to make whatever species you're catching. We agree that blues are generally best made whole, and trade ideas about doing them them that way.
A pause. He glances around as if to be sure no one is eavesdropping - even though there's nobody within a half mile - and says in hushed tones, "You ever have the cheeks?"
"The cheeks, the cheeks," he says, indicating the blues.
"Oh gawd," he says, rolling his eyes. "The best!"
I rushed home, baked a whole blue, went directly for my first bluefish cheeks and, of course: the best! To this day I go cheeks first on whole fish (a spoon works well.)
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