Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Golden Memories and Palate Preferences

I drank a gushu sheng blend today but could not force myself to write a tea review.  The reader survey was quite mixed as to what people wanted more of.  A third die-hard pu-erh heads of course only wanted more of their fix. Even for myself, when I'm not drinking it, I want to read about it.  But more than half responded that I should write whatever moves me so today we go for two delicious brown stuffs that isn't shu. 

 For every one of my friends, I like to play a little guessing game- predict whether or not they would like a particular new food or tea they haven't tried before.  I feel an extra glow when I start truly understanding a friend's palate.

Every month or as often as I can manage, I lunch with two of my best work friends who left last year to join a startup in San Francisco.  We used to enjoy so many good chocolate bars together in times past and  I try to bring something to continue on our chocolate camaraderie.

Last month I had brought two raw examples from Pacari  - first I was dubious that skipping roasting of the beans would result in a superior bar.  Even though it's conched, it definitely is less sweet with high acid notes making it an acquired taste. My friend who loves comfort food did not take to this new fangled taste. My Swiss friend- an adventurous eater and a partner in pork of course did.  Preferences does not indicate raw bars as a genre are good or bad as raw bars take a particular palate to appreciate.

Of course I never put all my eggs in one basket and I brought a crowd pleasing trad bar. The Wild Boar chocolate bar  I was enticed solely by the wrapper but it ended up being a surprisingly charming bar all the way through. The bar itself had simulated bites out of it along with a frieze of a boar lying on the bottom.  Even though it's a clever way for this chocolatier to give you less chocolate- they do it with such style that I don't mind.  Even in the world of pu-erh, a pretty wrapper and neifei gets you further than a uninspired communist one.

I love pork and boar above all and that's what made me jump at this boar bar. If a vendor sold a beeng with a cartoon boar, I'd probably be would be all over it.  Sometimes when I feel a little down, I recount my memories of enjoying the most delicious wild boar bacon once fried up and fed to me by my dear husband.  But I try hard not to overuse such golden memories and have to rely on the lesser remembrances of a recently enjoyed BLT with a favorite friend.  Perhaps dear reader you have a very different kind of golden memory than boar bacon sizzling on a cast iron fry pan. 

The weather is cooling down which means I can start mailing chocolate bars out to my friends around the country which was the occasion for this today's 23 bar purchase.  Also now that my company has moved to a new location,  a new visiting season has started.  Nothing is more heart-welcoming than handing out chocolate bars.  ("Yet another picture of organized food," my husband quips. )

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