Sometimes the first encounter with a particular foodstuff will (for lack of a better word) stain you for life, for better or worse.
I want to discuss the "worse" kind here.
What I mean is, sometimes the first iteration of a particular dish you eat will forever make you think that that *is* the way that dish should be made, even if it is a subpar example.
Example. My uncle is a die-hard fan of the bun at Pho Pasteur for no other reason that this was the first place he's ever had bun thit nuong. While I think their version is ok, I definitely think there are better versions out there, e.g. Nem Nuong Ninh Hoa and Vietnam Restaurant just to name two places off the top of my head (with apologies to all those other great choices in the OC).
Another example. McDonald's soft-serve ice cream. For me this *is* the way soft-serve ice cream should be, even though many will argue that both Foster's Freeze and Dairy Queen, and even Baskin Robbins, puts the stuff McDonald's spits out to shame.
Another example. Bob's Big Boy Spaghetti with meat sauce. A friend considers this *the* way spaghetti with meat sauce (or any type of red sauce) should be prepared. Anything else, in her opinion, is just not right. Why? Her first encounter with what she calls "Italian food" was at (gasp!) Bob's Big Boy.
Any restaurant stain you for life with respect to a particular dish?
Nem Nuong Ninh Hoa
9016 Mission Dr, Rosemead, CA 91770
8821 Valley Blvd, Rosemead, CA 91770