The first time someone referred to us a s"foodies" I was actually kind of offended, though I kept it to myself.
We were in Seattle, taking a tour with Savor Seattle Food Tours, and at a popcorn place called Kukuruza (highly recommend) at the end of the tour. We were talking with the guide about something, perhaps a recommendation for dinner or something, and we lapsed into - somehow - a discussion of our food tastes. I think one of us made the comment we have different tastes and enjoy the pursuit of different flavors and qualities more than others we know, and our guide mentioned us being foodies in her response.
Why did that bother me? I'm not entirely sure. Maybe it's just the whole being labeled thing - no one likes to be labeled, even if it is true. And it's not like this was used in a derogatory sense at all; quite the opposite actually. It's more a point of reference, no more a description of me as the fact my hair is brown or that I love college football, and tells just about as much of my whole story as any single, tiny tidbit can.
That is to say, not much.
After I put some thought into it, I realized the label was apt. I mean, can I really complain about a certain label if it's true? Perhaps it was the connotations I had in my own mind of what "foodie" meant. I think in my mind I was picturing a snobby person who is insanely picky about what they eat, is always sending food back at restaurants for no real good reason, and condescending to what the rest of the world puts in their own mouths.
That's not me - that's not us.
At the same time...I guess it kind of is. Sort of. I almost never send food back, and when I do I feel guilty about it. I don't care what someone else eats - we all make our own choices. I am a picky eater and there are certain foods I always get at certain places (as you can probably tell by the blog), but those foods aren't necessarily the best - they are the ones that are most pleasing to MY taste buds, not necessarily ANYONE'S taste buds.
After thinking about it a lot, thinking about some of the things we do, I came up with a handy list of reasons why Wifey and I really are foodies. Just a few.
1 - Well, we were on a food tour in a city three hours away. And we have done three different tours with Savor Seattle. And one in Portland. And if we travel to another city in the future, we'll be looking up tours in that city.
2 - We drive to cities with the express purpose of getting food. I mean, that's about the only reason we go to Seattle now. We pick out what towns we visit on the coast based around what looks good to eat, or our own old staples.
3 - We have a spreadsheet filled with places we have been and places we want to go. With a separate tab for food carts. Arranged by type. With notes on what to get.
4 - Both of us spend time looking up restaurants, reviews, and the like online, reading message boards and blogs.
5 - We watch shows on TV about food and travel, mentally making our own checklists.
6 - We spent money when Anthony Bourdain came to Portland to talk to go see him. He wasn't even here for any real reason we could tell - no book, the new season of his show No Reservations had started. I think he was just here to make a bunch of people laugh. And we loved it.
7 - We order our coffee from Hawaii, because that's the stuff we like the best (Kona from Country Samurai!).
8 - We buy salmon that comes from Alaska - Copper River, specifically - despite the exorbitant prices. Hey, it's damn good.
9 - We spend our Saturdays working in a new restaurant/bakery/deli/coffee shop/whatever around college football. Talk about a day.
10 - Sometimes dinner comes from hitting up the food carts downtown at lunch time and bringing it home. And I'm prepared for the storage of said food for the day.
I could probably come up with more reasons, but that's probably enough. Any more and people will think I'm crazy.
Well, at least the ones who might not already think that...
I guess this all goes to illustrate that I have come to grips with the fact that I am a foodie - and I have no qualms about it anymore. It just is, like some people love baseball or others crochet or others collect 15th century vases. It's a hobby, it's something we both enjoy doing - and the possibilities are endless.