Real Man Food

It’s no great revelation that our tastes change as we, uh… mature.

Think about the first wine you drank. Pink right? Or peach or strawberry or whatever Boone’s Farm blend you could get your hand on. 

White zinfandel, which is pink, is still popular with novices. In fairness to white zin, it’s still popular with girls and gay guys, too. No offense intended; I have girl friends and gay guy friends. I know what they like.

My own wine experience started with sauterne, which is a dessert wine. I recall drinking it over pizza with a girlfriend. It’s really sweet and a terrible choice with pizza, but it’s where your taste buds are. Or were.  

These days, I prefer syrahs, zins (not white), and cabernets: rich, hardy, almost heavy wines with lots of big tannins and a warm alcohol feel.

Coffee is another good example of changing tastes. It’s pretty common to start drinking it with lots of milk and sugar which, except for it being hot, makes it more like a coffee milk shake. I’m a late-in-life coffee drinker, but I only want it one way: black and strong.

Chocolate: I will eat creamy milk chocolate if you offer it, but I would marry a Hershey’s Special Dark bar if the law allowed and it could say “I do”.

Syrup: Aunt Jemima is for sissies. Give me a buttered biscuit and some blackstrap molasses - or sorghum, and get out of my way!

Anchovies: Like most folks, I grew up thinking they were yucky. Now, I routinely use anchovy paste in certain dishes. Sardines? Nothing but big anchovies. Open a can and let’s eat.

Spices and herbs: more, more, more! Pepper, cumin, and cilantro. Garlic could duke it out with dark chocolate for my deepest affections.

But you see the trend, yes?  Bigger, bolder, richer... words already used.  Here’s another word that applies: stinkier.  I want my cheese to stink. Bleu, gorgonzola… give me any cheese with mold in it. That seems odd to even say.

But ‘stinky’ seems like a good place to stop and begin to address the elephant in the room. And that is how all of this affects us. More importantly, how it affects the people around us. Or we could just ignore it. 


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