Does Knowing The Trick, Ruin the Treat?

Just a thought? Does knowing how something is done make it more or less enjoyable.  I’ll use modern cuisine as an example.  4 years ago, I had no idea how to do any of it.  Ferran Adria was a genious, and I was in awe.  My wife and I live 3 blocks from Bryan Voltaggio’s Volt and have been there many times,  including inadvertantly crashing his friends and family soft opening.  It was at that opening party that I had his beet macaron filled with foie gras.  It was delicous.  Being a chef, I always want to know how things are done. Now, knowing how to make a macaron with Methocel F50, I’m less impressed.  Not to take away from what any chef is doing out there.  It just ruins some of the magic for me.

Here’s how I see the process of dining out and cooking:

1)Go out to eat. Try something new. Be really excited and impressed.

2)Go home. Figure out how to do it.

3)Replicate it. Then put my own twist on it.  Continue to evolve from there.

4)Become “over it” and somewhat disenchanted with an ingredient, technique or cuisine.

5)Move on.

6)Probably re-visit at some point

I’m not a difficult diner.  I will eat absolutely anything. I still love going out to eat. Sometimes I wish that I was able to just go out to eat and not analyze the meal.  It’s challenging to not turn it off.  It’s what helps me become a better chef.  But sometimes, I just want to be a diner.



One thought on “Does Knowing The Trick, Ruin the Treat?

  1. My sister in law once told me she doesn’t lIke to eat out often because she could just cook the same thing at home. She can’t really, but that’s beside the point. Dining is about more than the food alone. I may be able to replicate a dish, but I don’t always have all the ingredients, or I may not think to match this side with that entree. Plus, at home, there isn’t a nice person bringing you cocktails and extra rolls. Maybe appreciating the nuance of a meal and not just analyzing the dish can help you get the thrill back.

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