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Culinary "awareness" in New Hampshire

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Culinary "awareness" in New Hampshire

bewley | Jan 21, 2008 09:31 AM

A recent series of posts on this forum have made me wonder, ‘Does New Hampshire trail its New England neighbors (Vermont and Maine) with regards to food culture and culinary preferences?’. My intent for raising this question is not to initiate a heated argument over which city/state is better or has the “best” eateries, but rather to examine regional preferences and the reasons they may or may not exist.

One example was noted recently in another post that people in NH may prefer portion size to food quality/taste. I have also found this to be the case in the Seacoast region, especially with regards to Italian food and pasta. Yes, there are pockets of culture/ethnic cuisine in Keene, Hanover, Portsmouth, North Conway and so on, but it has been my experience that most citizens of NH are a “meat and potatoes” crowd overall and adverse to trying anything new or different. Others have noted that they know some who prefer chains over local/independently owned, eateries as they “always know what to expect.” I have mentioned this to some who have attributed this lack of culinary awareness to a “Yankee” aversion to “otherness” and change.

My question is have others noted this trend and what are the reasons behind it?

Is New Hampshire (generally speaking) lagging behind Vermont and Maine with regards to its food “culture” or is this typical of the region overall?

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