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Lord Michael Lewis

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Everything posted by Lord Michael Lewis

  1. They don't need to get them daily as they are alive, and will continue living for several days if kept in suitable conditions. Most shellfish is sold live, the difficulties come with fish, as they generally die when they're caught. Strangely enough, there is such a thing as overly fresh fish. Soon after being caught, rigor mortis sets in. This must pass before the fish is eaten, otherwise the flesh has a texture similar to raw cauliflower.
  2. I don't think you two would get on. He seems averse to cliche.
  3. Probably Don King More likely to be mythical cricketer, Sir Donald Bradman, scorer of 29 test centuries.
  4. I'd like to dine with Rousseau; I have few questions for him. But seeing as he's long dead, it would have to be Michael Jackson.
  5. You're a freak. Have you read the synopsis?
  6. Yes, yes! He's turning into James Joyce.
  7. I don't, I was considering stealing it. I'm not sure this is what you've been saying, but anyway, although I changed the picture, it was beyond my control.
  8. The truth of this sentence would be better served by replacing the verb, "did" with, "invoked".
  9. Once, in the new wing the National Gallery at about 4:00 pm on a winter's afternoon, I was looking at a picture. At that precise moment, the artificial lighting came on and the picture 'changed' before my eyes. The colours were different, spatiallly it appeared flatter, etc. The point is that the picture remained the same in every way. What changed was the way I percieved it. I changed the picture.
  10. It depends on two factors: Firstly who is doing the PR (publicity like this is not cheap, and there are only two PR people that I know of who specialize in this kind of blanket coverage) . And secondly, the central London location; thus not necessitating complex travel plans for 'busy' reviewers.
  11. While I agree that expectations matter, I think your logic is flawed. Let’s say that apple juice consists of 10 flavour bearing molecules. Taster A correctly identifies it as apple juice on the basis of molecules 1-5 Taster B correctly identifies it as apple juice on the basis of molecules 6-10 Both are capable of identification, yet neither perceive it in the same way. Let’s say that a third taster, ignorant of both the apple and its juices, tastes the juice. What does he perceive/interpret? Does he taste apple juice, or just some of the ten flavour bearing molecules? Taste does not exist in a vacuum, and each taster may perceive something quite distinct. However, what is undeniable is that tasters are able to link this perception correctly to an item if they are already sufficiently familiar with that item. Let's then say that we repeat the process, but this time blindfolds are removed, and the apple juice is dyed with flavourless red colouring. The ignoramus will taste the same thing, as will A and B, but it will be A and B (if anyone) who have problems with identification. What this suggests is that a knowledge of what something looks like, when subverted, can be confounding. It doesn't really suggest much more.
  12. There seem to be two camps here. Those that believe that the molecular arrangement of foodstuffs is taste; and those that maintain that taste is the perception of those food molecules via the sensory organs. To the first camp, you're both wrong, and unimaginitive. Just because two blindfolded tasters are able to recognize that what they are tasting is apple juice, doesn't mean that the sensory process is the same in both tasters. In fact, what the tasters are doing is comparing the actual apple juice to stored sensory analogies of other apple juice moments. For all anyone knows these analogies may be quite different. Indeed, all that we do know is that tasters have an ability to recognize, classify and identify things that they taste; not how they do it. As any of those who have experimented with mind-bending drugs know, sensory perception is liable to change, and it is quite possible to perceive wrongly. Senses work in tandem, not alone: Some people see sound or feel rhythm in colour. Anyone who posits that one sense doesn't or can't impinge on another, better be either a Nobel Prize-winning brain expert, or a fool.
  13. Not that they're right, but it's often chefs who say things like -- You eat with your eyes. I imagine that there are many chefs who believe presentation will make their food taste better. Clearly presentation in terms of arrangement of food on the plate, and table settings etc. can't alter the taste of the food, but there's no doubt that it can influence the taster. I think it's naive to suggest that chefs only present food according to their desire for it to look good. It seems much more connected with diners' expectations and price. Complex plating routines complicate service and are labour intensive; as I've already said, elaborate presentation is a hallmark of expensive dining. Part of the expense (a significant part) is incurred by the extra labour necessary to produce and plate stuff that doesn't necessarily taste different or better. There are many, even too many, restaurants that are expensive for this reason alone.
  14. Bear in mind that in the Paris of seventeenth century, the refined rich were accustomed to eating bread that had had the crust grated off in order to appear uniformly white. What is hard to extricate is whether the processes described above are taste driven or presentation driven; that is something that can't be judged by appearance.
  15. In many rspects it is the cosmetic element that distinguishes 'haute' from 'regional' food. So if you're stuck on the superiority of 'haute' then you'll naturally believe that presentation makes a fundamental difference in taste -- otherwise, how do you justify the prices?
  16. I'm fairly sure I have said something, but clearly you don't wish to acknowledge it.
  17. I usually use my hands for sushi, as I was instructed to do by the sushi chef I respect the most. But it tastes the same whether I use my hands or the chopsticks. What's your point? The Oxford Companion to Food is objective in that it writes about food. Davidson and his collaborators don’t say – this is what they eat in Senegal, but it tastes like shit. If you want to write about your relationship with food, that’s fine, but not with the pretence of objectivity. Your ‘thoughts’ on starting this thread seem like platitudes in the light of your subsequent comments. There’s nothing wrong with writing for a readership of like minds as long as you’re upfront about it.
  18. So what? If this is your best answer, then maybe you shouldn't be writing about food. Although you differ from Plotinki in opinions, you both seem to think that (where food is concerned) you are supermen, whose subjective preferences are objectively more valuable. When you eat in Japanese restaurant, do you use chopsticks? Why?
  19. I think I love you. Your love is cheap. Are you sure you're not confusing it with lust?
  20. The brand is called 'Boiron' and it's imported from Rungis.
  21. There is a similar problem in the art world, in that most important art is found in museums. The fact that the dining experiences being talked about take place in restaurants (in which arguably the sole variable is the food), imposes an undesirable frame of reference. Perhaps, instead of asking yourself what the food means to you and comparing it with your own store of experience, a fundamental first question should be: what does it mean to the person preparing it, or the culture from where it originates?
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