I was watching a rerun of Bizarre Foods where Andrew Zimmern was in Chengdu, China and his guide was trying to get him to eat walnut paste. He previously expressed his dislike for walnuts and told the guide a couple of times that he did not like walnuts. She assured him it would not taste like walnuts, which of course it did. While I realize this particular segment was probably scripted, it got me thinking about other instances where someone has been encouraged to eat or drink something they expressed a dislike for.
A few years ago, I read a magazine article where the author was at a small bed and breakfast in New England. When served coffee at breakfast, his hostess encouraged him to put cream in his coffee. He said, "No thank you, I prefer my coffee black." She pressed him again to put cream in his coffee. He again replied, "No thank you, I don't care for cream in my coffee." To which she said, "But you'll like *our* cream." implying that it was somehow better than everyone else's. To be polite he put the cream in his coffee, but, as expected, he did not like it.
I have had similar experiences. When I have mentioned there was a certain food or beverage that I did not care for, I occasionally am told the reason I did not like it was because I didn't have a "properly prepared version," but if I had one that was "done right I would like it just fine." Or similar to the example cited above, I have been told, "But you'll like *our* (insert disliked food here)."
As you might expect, occasionally I found I *did* like the new and improved version, but more often than not, my opinion was unchanged. A good example, for me, is chicken fried steak. No matter how many times I have been told I would "like this version because it was the prepared the way CFS is 'supposed to be made'" I have always been disappointed.
So how about you? What have you said, "No thank you" to, only to be told, "But you like our..." Why were you told you would like it? Because it was prepared by a "real (insert ethnicity here) person"? Or was it because of more "authentic" ingredients? Maybe a "better" or "correct" preparation or cooking method?
Did you relent and try it? What were the results?
Conversely, have you ever thought you liked a particular dish, but after trying a "properly prepared version" that you liked the "unauthentic" version better?