Sunday, August 23, 2015

I, Goremet

—  You Berk                                     

Where I cut the cheese

I watched two episodes
of Netflix's original 6 part series Chef's Table yesterday (Helly, this has your name on it).  The first episode is about
Modena Italy restaurateur Massimo Bottura.  Modena for me means Balsamic Vinegar. 
Some years ago—at least ten—I somehow became an aficionado of the stuff, even though I never used it.  After watching a documentary on Balsamic Vinegar Di Modena I purchased a bottle.  It cost a lot of money, so I bought some cheaper brands at the same time which is what I use when a recipe calls for the stuff.  It happens that Moderna also makes Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, which I am never without, and always use. Ten minutes into this show I yearned for
Balsamic Vinegar and Cheese.  Yearned! 
I paused the show; retrieved, then opened my bottle (luckily the cork was still moist).  I poured some into a shot glass and sipped some along with the cheese. 
The first sip knocked my socks off! Really.  Now I wanted to test it against the cheap stuff I had been using.
Horry clap!  The Monari Federzoin (serial number A422169)  was definitly sweeter, but not bad.  The Don Marcello 4 Star was even sweeter, but passable.
But, Wait! I am stunned to discover both are made in Modena!
What does all this mean?  For one thing, it means people who smoked up to 4 packs of cigarettes a day for 40 years should not pay premium prices for any food.  I am just a Progresso Balsamic guy with pretensions. A berk.


Skoonj said...

My daughter has taken to ordering her pizza with balsamic vinegar drizzled over it. Last time I let her have half the pizza with her toppings plus the BV drizzle, while I had closer to a normal pizza, without the drizzle.

When I actually got the pizza, the whole thing had balsamic vinegar drizzle on it by mistake. I tasted it. What a horrible thing to do to a pizza.

Stu Tarlowe said...

Well, Skoonj, you're a grownup and you can eat what you want, how you want and when you want. But my own tastebuds and I disagree with you about "a horrible thing to do to a pizza". As a matter of fact, one of my little tricks for making almost any store-bought frozen pizza more palatable is a little drizzle of olive oil and of balsamic vinegar.

And before I throw away an "empty" bottle of French dressing, I pour some balsamic vinegar in and "wash" the remnants onto my salad.

By the way, Skoonj and I are both old enough to remember buying pizza for 10¢ a slice, and at the same pizzeria!

Ole Phat Stu said...

Not sure if you know enough Cockney rhying slang to understand what "berk" means ;-)

SoylentGreen said...

I believe that's what's called a "Self Berking".

Kim du Toit said...

Modena means only one thing to me: Scuderia Ferrari.

leelu said...

At some 'price point', you hit the point of diminishing returns on better taste/flavor. Back in the 80s, I found that champagne that cost $80.00 a bottle really didn't taste any different to me than the stuff I got for $20.00 or so.

Stick with what you like, and to hell w/ the snobs.

SoylentGreen said...

I like the cut of your jib, Leelu. A wine columnist once wrote that the most significant factor in satisfaction on a bottle of wine is your perception that you got a good deal. Ripple - at $2 - tastes pretty good to me. And I've heard of people who are only satisfied with their wine at $500 thousand.

Juice said...

I'm sure Rodger knows the translation for berk(s) and it's why he uses it. Although most British gangster movies just call it out for the deserving. HA

leelu, of course you are correct. Our son bought a bottle of Don Perignon for
$125 and a bottle of Veuve Clicquot for $50. Everyone preferred the latter. Some things are just over rated.

Juice said...

Btb, MSN had a list of shows not created by network tv and this was one. I book marked it, but haven't made my way to the Chef's Table.
Also, this is where my so-so palate has purchased balsamics and olive oils via Jacuzzi winery Winery, Napa, CA. Not Italy.

Helly said...

balsamic + parma = Italian umami

What does all this mean?

It means the vinegar industry is a lot like the wine industry: Excellent product gets shipped with generic labels, and crap gets shipped with fancy labels.

I've been known to sip at a good vinegar too. However, due to matrimonial stomach issues, I've been blending salad dressings with more wine than vinegar. Also due to the dressings taste better.

Rodger the Real King of France said...

Actually, my recommendation was for the series as a whole.

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