Thursday, January 25, 2007

Flying Piggy's

You read some of my posts which referenced Flying Piggy's. Well, this time, we brought the camera and snapped some pictures.

Not having visited italy (yet), Flying Piggy's reminds me of a French brasserie; for not very much money, you can eat a good meal prepared with respect of the ingredients and the love of food. So inexpensive in fact that one might well decide to go there many times a week.

Some examples:

Mixed greens and vegetable melange $5.95

Mussels With leeks, chilies and cream. 9.95

The Flighty Boar
Fresh pasta (made daily) with prosciutto and mushrooms in a white wine cream sauce.
Half-portion $9.95

Just thinking of that flighty boar makes me want to have it again! I think we'll book a reservation for next week...

Just one little negative note: the building's insulation does not seem to be the greatest, which makes the place a bit chilly in the winter. Nothing that a glass of red wine can't fix though.

Flying Piggy's
1665 Bank StreetOttawa, ON K1V-7Z2

Arome at the Hilton Lac Leamy

May works for State Farm and she has a great boss; as a reward for a great quarter, her team (and spouses) was taken out to dinner at the Arome restaurant, at the Casino du Lac Leamy, in Gatineau (Hull sector).

This was the third time we ate at Arome (twice for dinner, and once for breakfast).

The food is honest; it is cooked right, presented well and adequately tasty. However, I don't think that one should expect to get a gastronomical event to be remembered at Arome.

The combination of ingredient is always relatively simple and not very inventive. The portions sure are large though if you are into quantity.

Is it worth a trip? Well, if you are there and you cannot afford the Baccara, sure. Otherwise, go straight to the Baccara which has a much higher level of service and the quality of food is far superior. Yeah yeah, it is probably an unfair comparison because your bill will be about half as large at Arome than at Baccara. However, if you are looking for a comparably priced restaurant and you are not already on the casino floor, you should instead opt for The Urban Pear.

Hilton Hotel
3 Boulevard du Casino
Gatineau, Quebec

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Kibbles at JC and May's

The Pud here:

Well, I wanted to take this opportunity to review the dining options at Chez May & JC.

Let's first start with the serving times; only twice a day and at very set times (8am and 5pm). What if a cat gets hungry around noon? No munchies? Disappointing!
Also, the portions left a little bit to be desired. I would suggest that the kitchen doubles them... wait, triples them. Yeah, that would be much better! I'd meow to that!

And the menu does not change... ever! Not that I mind all that much because I am very picky; I like my kibbles and nothing else will do. But come on people, give it a bit of flair! What about kibbles 'au jus'? Kibbles tartare? Seared kibbles on a bed of finely chopped kibbles? Just use your imagination.

And what's with the toilet bowl less than 5 feet away from the eating area? This is not very professional!

Will I come back? As if I have a choice! They lock the outside door and unless I figure out that opposable thumbs trick, that's pretty much it for me!

In closing, I would give food at JC & May one paw up and I'd like to add one last thing: meow!

The Pud

Thursday, January 18, 2007

Fratelli on Bank

I will only briefly discuss Fratelli here because we did not take any pictures and since it has been a few months now, I do not remember each dish well enough to describe them at lenght.

Suffice is to say that we enjoyed the food and the ambiance. We will certainly go back soon and we will take a few pictures.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Theo's Greek Tavern

I think that one of the reasons that our couple is strong is our shared interests and, one of them is the love of food. We often have cravings for some specific and/or regional food; May will have a craving for steak, I'll crave antipasto. She will long for seafood, I will be hungry for seared tuna. Our cravings often don't coindice but they make dining eventful.

So, the other day, I was in the mood for Greek food. I find it difficult to find good Greek food in Ottawa. Not too far from our place, there's the Greek Souvlaki House. However, the food's really not up to par; they just pile up starch way high, trading quantity for quality.

We decided to give Theo's Greek Tavern a try.

We satrted with 'melitzano' ($6), a mediterranean dip made with eggplant, olive oil, red wine vinegar and garlic and a plate of kalamata olives ($5) . Very nice and fresh. At -25 degrees outside, these kind of dishes will transport you, make you feel the warm Aegean sea breeze and if you close your eyes and take a bite (watch for the pits!), you might evevn convince yourself that you are on a terasse in Mykonos. The tough part is that you eventually have to open your eyes...

My dish was the 'Exohiko "surprise" lamb'; country style lamb with feta and kefalotiri cheeses, potatoes and herbs wrapped in fillo, oven baked with a light tomato sauce on top, served with rice and fresh vegetables ($17)(right, front). Very tasty. Notice the moderate amount of starch.

May has the riganato and shrimp; chicken marinated and then cooked with tiger shrimps, grilled and served with rice, roast potatoes, fresh vegetables and garlic butter ($22). Theo's chicken is juicy, with a zesty marinade. The vegetables are cooked right while not being watery.

All-in-all, a good experience at a decent price. We will come back.

Theo's Greek Tavern
911 Richmond Road

Monday, January 15, 2007

Eggspectation for Brunch

We had not been to Eggspectation in more than 10 years. So, this weekend, we decided to give it a try. The menu is quite exstensive and service was good. However, that's where it stopped. The coffee was as bad as Cora's (May dixit) and the food pretty bad.

If you need to compare, Eggs Florentine are $8.99. Regular coffee is $1.59 (not that you would want to order it in any circumstance)

Avoid and go back to Empire Grill, which is not all that far.

171 Bank St. (corner Laurier)

Forno Antico

We frequently drive on Bronson to and back from downtown and I always have been curious about the little pizza place with a stack of wood logs in the front of the Charlesfort condo development.

Aside from Luigi's accent which needs a little bit of getting used to, we were impressed by the pizza. The crust was very good, like a very good french baguette. Toppings are fresh and the ensemble is very nice. You won't find five varieties of stuffed, pan, square, oval, triangular, what have you pizza pies. However, you will find authenticity and that is a very strong point in our book.

Although rating pizzas is probably more subjective than any other type of food (ask 10 people and you will have 10 different and conflicting answers on which is the best), we thought that this place deserves to be tried.

Their delivery radius is limited to the downtown area so, you might have to plan a bit.


Forno Antico
683 Bronson street

Sunday, January 14, 2007

L'Oree du Bois

Another trip to the boonies leads us to Chelsea again, to sample L'Oree du Bois this time.
Before we step in the relatively large all-wood cabin, we cannot help but notice that the parking lot is rather large and full. Inside, there is a flurry of activity as waiters ran around the lobby in what seemed to be a chaotic manner. The place is large and I am concerned that food will be second to volume served.

Those fears were unfounded. L'Oree du Bois' menu is varied and its basic ingredients are either locally sourced or even produced on site! Quality ingredient is more than half the recipe for a successful dish and L'Oree du Bois does not disappoint. May's 'Smoked salmon and scallops with celery root "julienne", chive and beet mayonnaise' is superb (right). Even before your lips touch it, the salmon and scallops' fragrance will make you salivate. They are smoked from L'Oree's own kiln.

I had the green peas soup which was also vary flavourful and highlighted the quality of the basic stock used for its foundation. Nam!

The main courses reflect the true essence of L'Oree du Bois; no fancy 'montage' of food, no elaborate layering of tastes, but rather bold, fresh and succulent savours prepared masterfully.

My 'Red Deer medallions from Boileau' marinated in red wine with black peppercorn is simply presented and a feast for one's tastebuds (left).

May's Confit of Quails with Wild mushroom sauce is equally delectable. Portions are large and the whole ambience was perfect. This is the food of talented kitchen crasftmen. I told May that this is the kind of food my dad would make (you have to know him; he will travel 100km just to get the right ingredients for a dish); you can feel the love in each plate!

And, as it turns out, it is quite affordable. The 4 courses Table d'Hote is $33, which includes soup, appetizer, the main course, dessert and coffee. Well, not that I want to dwell on this but Le Tartuffe was more expensive for a sub par meal.

So, we will be back in the summer to see what they can do with fresh herbs! If you enjoy bold tastes and fresh ingredients, definitely worth the 20 minutes drive.

L'Oree du Bois
15, Chemin Kingsmere
Chelsea, QC

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Les Fougeres

We had not been to Les Fougeres in more than 10 years. It was time for a rekindling.
After about a 35 minutes door-to-door drive, we arrived at Chelsea restaurant.

I went for the table d'hote and May went for the tasting menu with wine pairing.

Her first dish is the Québec duck foie gras terrine layered with duck confit and
Armagnac prunes. Very good. The sweetness of the prunes brilliantly highlights the soft and salty foie gras and duck confit. Nam!

Since I have quite a few less dishes than May, I wait as she is served her second dish, the lobster and red pepper bisque (left). It is very good; bold lobster flavour which makes us forget the terrible bisque we had at Le Tartuffe (sorry, could not resist). I am served a peanut soup which is excellent; not so strong as to feel like one's sipping peanut butter, yet very flavourful.

The Grand Banks scallop marinated in lime juice, fish sauce and mint follows. Honest dish. Nice pairing of a Gewurztraminer.

As May is served the ravioli with a filling of truffled leek fondant and poached egg yolk, served in a wild mushroom broth , I get my tiger shrimps on a bed of risotto. Again, we enjoyed the shrimp dish very much, although we are less impressed by the ravioli. That dish was somewhat of a miss for us; the truffled leek fondant's taste is subtle and the wild mushroom broth completely takes over the flavour. Mind you, the mushroom broth is very good. However, we would have liked to be able to appreciate the full richness that this dish had to offer with a more judicious combination of tastes.

Some Pinot des Charentes sorbet to cleanse the palate.

May gets her seared bison “poutine” with
Tellicherry peppercorn sauce and celery root frites
Oooohhh... bison! Really, really good. I'm still salivating as I write those lines! I have to say I thought the poutine side, with its celery root frites instead of potatoes, was better than the Foie-gras poutine we had at Beckta about a year and a half ago. Bison is cooked perfectly. Memorable dish for me...

My Osso Bucco is served with rosemary gnocchi and rapini. Very tender. Very well executed dish. I find that a good osso bucco is hard to find and it was somewhat of a test of Les Fougeres for me to order it. I am not disappointed.

Next dish for May is the lamb, apple and coconut curry with freshly roasted and ground spices. The lamb is tasty and very tender. May felt that the chutneys were a bit off: It had the reminiscence of an Indian dish without really being a true homage to it. I thought the chutneys were just way too sweet. Plus, it is a lot of food for this time of day, as it is now about 9pm.

May's next dish is a cheese plate which is too strong for her. Heresay! That's cheese! I'll have it! How could I not like it? I am a friend of all cheeses; I have never met a cheese I do not like.

We close the evening with May's apple beignet with cinnamon ice cream (left). Ok dessert, nothing too earth shattering. Makes me think that there aren't many places in the Ottawa/Gatineau area where desserts are truly amazing. This will require further investigations.

So, the damages were:
$45 for my table d'hote. Add $30 for wine pairing. $85 for May's tasting menu, $57 for her wine pairing. Add a Kir Royal to this and our final bill with taxes was $256.39

We had a very nice evening; the staff is attentive and friendly. The ambience is not as stuffy as fine-dining restaurants in-town such as Le Baccara, Beckta, Perspectives or Signatures, which gives Les Fougeres much more of a 'terroir' feel.

And when you think of it, at $45, the table d'hote is very reasonnably priced for one looking for a nice romantic dinner on an otherwise quiet saturday night.

Les Fougeres
783 route 105, Chelsea

Friday, January 12, 2007

Vardy at the Whalesbone

We had followed Stephen Vardy's transition from Beckta to Par-fyum. We had recently learnt that he had left Par-Fyum and is now at Whalesbone. Being a fan of Vardy's food, we had to see what he was up to and so we used this kitchen reno food marathon time to do so.

Whalesbone is a hole in the wall. We drove right by without noticing it.

The place is so tiny, there is no way not to bump into other diners or the waiters. It is part of the charm. The kitchen is completly open and equally microscopic. The place was packed and we did not see the chefs stop for a second while we were there. The ambience is friendly.
I really appreciated the open kitchen which let us observe while the chefs created our meal.
I started with the salmon belly tartare (left) with wasabi crunch, pine nuts, tobiko and quails' egg. May had a half sashimi sampler. I had the tartare at Perspectives as well which I enjoyed; it is a nice and fresh dish. I make a pretty decent tartare myself, very comparable to Perspectives'. However, this is where Vardy brings it to the next level; he adds pine nuts which gives it a nice and unexpected crunch (well, if you haven't read the menu beforehand... of course) without distracting from the intended flavour. May's sashimi were so fresh, we wondered where Whalesbone gets their fish!
We then shared the Crisp Halibut Cheeks with lemon-sesame braised shiitake mushrooms, garlic chips and shisa salad. Very tasty.
Off the official menu was Vardy's Oyster House Carpetbagger. One might plunk down $50 on this dish but it will serve two, and it is heaven in one's mouth. It is a 9oz striploin steak topped with 2 ounces of seared foie-gras, stuffed with a fresh oyster, mushrooms and goat cheese. The combined, layered, bold flavors of truffle oil, steak, cheese and foie gras is just indescribable:
this dish is so fat it might kill you on the spot, but it is well worth the risk! The ingredients are bold but complement each other extremely well. This dish was exceptional.
We finished with desert which was ok. I have never really been impressed with Vardy's dessert (although I have no clue whether he is responsible for them at Whalesbone or at Beckta's).
A good dinner is one that will make you want to go back to the restaurant where it was served. Ours was of a second variety; a meal so good that you recall its greatness days after you had it and crave the moment when you will go back. Whalesbone delivered a moment of greatness.
Steve, wherever you go, we will definitely follow you to sample more of these astonishing creations. "Mr. Vardy makes me happy..." says May.
The Whalesbone Oyster House
430 Bank Street

Beckta, sans Vardy

We were a bit apprehensive about returning to Beckta after we heard that chef Stephen Vardy was no longer manning the kitchen. Was it going to be as good?

Well, the new chef, Michael Moffatt, is really up to the task and delivered a great experience for both May and I.

May had the Mushroom Broth Sunchoke Duchesse (with “Freshly-Cooked” Beef, Honey Mushrooms and Mushroom Broth)($15). The beef was served raw and Mr. Beckta himself came to pour the broth over it. The hot liquid cooks the meat which stays tender and very tasty. Really excellent, says May.

Now, for me to get excited about a salad, it has to be darn amazing. Just ask May. (I refer to lettuce as rabbit food). The Beautiful Organic Greens“Les Jardain de Chefs” ($11) Greens with Fresh Figs, Vanilla-Lime Vinaigrette, Goat Cheese & Crispy Shallots was simply incredible. Greens so fresh, you'd swear they were picked on the front lawn (in January... very unlikely). Actually, this is quite possibly the best salad I have ever had in my life, on par with the one prepared by my aunt Bernadette at her house in St-Dié (in the French Vosges). To put that in context, the latter's ingredients had just been picked in the garden and fresh wild mushrooms picked in the mountains behind her house. A restaurant that can get that level of freshness and flavour for its greens is nothing short of amazing.

Next was May's Organic “Berkshire Black” Pork Duo Roast Loin Served Medium Rare, with Mustard Coated Bitter Greens, Black-Eyed Peas, Rosemary- Smoked Confit of Belly & Horseradish Sauce ($35). May says that this dish is not for the faint of heart as it is laced with fat (nam!). This enhances the flavour and was well complemented with the bitterness of the greens.

My lamb was very nice and cooked just right.

We were happy to find that Beckta has not skipped a beat and, as far as we are concerned, is still the best table in Ottawa. We will be returning as soon as we are done paying our current Master Card bill!

Beckta Dining and Wine
226 Nepean

Perspectives at the Brookstreet Hotel

It is our third time at Perspectives. The first time, we were there as part of a new year's eve package. We had heard so many good things about Blackie's food that our expectations were way high. We were totally underwhelmed; some of the dishes tasted wrong (seared foie gras with a very unpleasant aftertaste) and the rest was just not up to our hopes.
However, that was a special event and it might have caused some troubles in the kitchen. We felt that Perspectives deserved a second chance.

So we went back. Again, not impressed by the food. Don't get us wrong; the ingredients were good and the chefs knew how to use them well. It just was not the memorable experience that the price being asked would call for.

But, again, with all the awards and rave reviews that Perspectives got, both from peers AND from Internet reviewers, we just had to go back. We must have been wrong. Maybe we had been hitting the same less experienced sous-chef on those two nights. There are so few great tables in Ottawa, we longed to be amazed!

So, here we are, we went back...

We were first presented with the amuse bouche: seared tuna on mango chutney. I cannot discern any significant taste. My bouche was not amused. May found it chewy.

For starters, I had the Big eye tuna tartare with caramelized banana lady finger and preserved black bean (left). I have to say that this is the highlight of the meal for me; the mix of flavors is fresh and inventive. May's Digby ocean scallops with baby spinach (right), shiitake mushroom and soya truffle emulsion were cooked just right. However the various elements ate sequentially and what appeared to be little consideration as to integration of tastes other than how it looked on the plate (very nice by the way; Perspectives' dishes are all extremely well presented)

Next was the rack of veal from Charlevoix with ginger snap crust, foie gras agnolotti and a black currant "tang" (left), and potato wrapped venison loin with Azuki beans, sweet pea and shallot pulse (right). May's veal was tasty, if a bit overcooked (she was not asked for cooking temperature). My venison was cooked just right but I must avoid mixing with the surrounding ingredients which completely overpowers its taste instead of adding layers to it.

We closed the evening with the Valrhona chocolate soufflé (left) which we both found very good. To be noted; May thought that the green tea she was served was excellent. A bit sad that this would be the memorable part of her meal.

So, all and all... The food is not bad, certainly in Ottawa's top 10. However, not even close to be in North America's top 100 and this meal was not an amazing culinary moment for either of us. If we were to travel to Kanata's industrial park and shell out almost $180, we want it to be something to be remembered.

For us... we are done with Perspectives, we gave it a fair chance but now, three strikes and you're out!

Our bill came to $178.10, which included two glasses of wine and a shared dessert.
525 Legget Drive

Brunch at the Empire Grill

We live in Ottawa's south end, not too far from the airport, and the only breakfast/brunch place close by that we know of is Cora's. I never really liked Cora's because we almost always have to wait to be seated and the food is frankly not worth it. Well, last time we went, we also had to wait an hour to get our orders because of a kitchen problem and we decided that this was it for Cora's.

We thought "the hell with expenses, let's go to the market and get some good brunch", thinking that the trade-off for quality would be a lighter purse.

Well, we were wrong. Not only is the Empire Grill offering a great brunch menu, it is also no more expensive than Cora's!

Furthermore, the place is much nicer and the staff friendlier. May had "The Empire" (left) which is way too much food for one person. I had the eggs florentine (below right).

The hollandaise sauce is unctuous and satisfying. The plates are full and appetizing.

I am not a coffee drinker but May tells me that Empire's is much better than Cora's (she used the word 'abysmal' when referring to Cora's coffee)

And you know what? Don't waste your time with Zack's which is just a few steps away (unless you go for the Diners ambience only); it is not cheaper and certainly not as good.
For a reference about prices: Eggs Florentine at Empire $10, Zack's $9.99 and Cora's $10 (if I remember correctly). Coffee is $2.75 at Empire, $1.99 at Zack's and whatever at Cora's (it is that bad).

Now, if they could only open an outlet in Hunt Club!

The Empire Grill
47 Clarence Street

Thursday, January 11, 2007

The kitchen reno food marathon!

I have been laying ceramic tiles in our kitchen for the past week and for probably the course of next 2 weeks. As such, I offered May the following deal; we'll be eating out every night until it is done and she gets to pick the restaurants with the condition that it has to be a different one each night.

Well, she was quite enthusiastic about that prospect. We will let you know of our findings.

Tuesday, January 9, 2007

Stoneface Dolly's on Preston

On January 8th, 2007, 8pm

Friends of ours recommended Stoneface Dolly's so we decided to check it out.

For starter, we had the Red Thai Soup. Very flavourful, rich taste. We liked it.

May had the Jerk Chicken (left) and I had the Veal "Birds" (Ground veal wrapped in prosciutto in a portobello and marsala cream sauce).

May's chicken was overcooked, which made it quite dry.

Our friend Cheez was with us and complained that his rice was a bit crispy. May acquiesced. I asked to sample it as I thought that they may both be missing the point of al-dente. However, that was not the case; the rice was clearly undercooked (some grains would break under the tooth). NDLR: May reminds me that I should have trusted her judgment in the first place. Ok, ok, you were right! ;-)

My veal birds (right) were better but we're not talking fancy food here. I would say it tasted like something served at a friend's house who is just starting to dabble with cooking... it is hit and miss.

Overall, I would say that Stoneface Dolly's gets a 'fair' grade. The food is too uneven to make it an hangout place for us. Unless you really want to eat on Preston street, I would skip it an go directly to Flying Piggy's further south on Bank for truly fresh pasta with a wider range of taste at comparable prices (for half portions).

Main course between $16.99 and $19.99. Pastas from $12.50 and $17.99

Stoneface Dolly's

Monday, January 8, 2007

Le Tartuffe

Le Tartuffe's Web site claims that diners can expect "a full-fledged experience of French gastronomy in the Outaouais". It is with that impression that May and I stepped in the restaurant at 133, Notre-Dame-de-l'Ile in Gatineau. The garish 80's decor that welcomed us was unexpected. No worries, we were going for the food.

Once seated, May noticed that the tablecloth was stained, which in itself was not a big deal. However, it would be an indicator of things to come.

May ordered a Kir Royal which got a passable grade from her.
The service seemed a bit rushed. Not so much in that dishes were coming too fast from the kitchen, but rather that the waiter seemed overly concerned about making sure he could quickly drop the plates and then return to whatever more interesting he had to do.

May ordered the Seafood velouté, which was a shame. The micro-shrimps were obviously coming from a can and were stringy. The broth had no subtlety. It did not bode well for what would follow.

One thing for restauranteurs to know; you cannot fake fresh bread by re-heating mostly stale one. The bread we were served was crusty-dried as opposed to have a flaky crust and a moist interior.

May's entree was the 'Burgundy snails feuillete, garlic flower cream sauce, tomato concassé and basil oil' (Image on the left) . Nothing much to say about it; was reasonably tasty if a bit on the bland side. Honest dish which looked very nice but was much shorter on taste.

I had the "Double cream Canadian brie cheese in a filo pastry crusted with carvi seeds, served on a cranberry coulis". Well, this was not a match made in heaven; as you can see on the picture, the filo was swimming in a pool of cranberry sauce which completely overpowered the brie. The tastes just did not mesh and I could not fathom how the chef could think the combination judicious. I could see that, in moderation, the cranberry's tartness would provide an interesting twist to the mild cheese, but here, there seemed that have been no consideration to the taste layering at all.

For the main course, I had the "Roasted rack of lamb, crusted with Dijon mustard and fresh herb breadcrumbs, mustard and garlic sauce" (left). May had the "Grilled Alberta ¨AAA¨ beef filet, with Le Rassembleu blue cheese from Sainte-Sophie, Port sauce".
Let's talk about the steak first. With the quality of chefs coming out of culinary schools these days, it is unacceptable to get a steak cooked to medium when medium-rare was requested. Well, to be fair, it could have been the waiter's fault in not bringing it to the table sooner. Who knows? Anyway... not too happy about that. The port reduction was nice however.
My lamb was OK. Again, nothing that one could not get at your generic neigbourhood steak place. By the way, notice that the side veggies are the same for both dishes?

We finished with an almond cheese cake which turned out to be the best part of the meal; the berries coulis nicely complemented the almond flavour and we both enjoyed it.

So, all and all, this had not been a nice experience and we drove back to Ottawa frustrated to have wasted an evening on sub-par food. Mind you, Le Tartuffe is not very expensive. Our three courses were $36 for mine and $39 for May's.

I wish that Le Tartuffe would charge a bit more and truly deliver a gastronomical experience as they claim. Or charge less, and get rid of the pretentious qualificatives.

P.S. And what it is with the music? We were served an atrocious mixture of the worst that Musak has to offer. That was the last offence to an already disappointing evening.

Despite the low prices, we will not go back to Le Tartuffe...

Table d'Hote from $31 to $39 which includes soup, entrees and main course.
Web Site: http://www.letartuffe.com/

Welcome to the Traveling Foodies

Welcome to our food-related blog.

We intend to share our gastronomical experiences with you in the hope that it will give you a few ideas of places to try out for yourself (or to avoid).

Who are we?

My name is Jean-Christophe Clement, native of Montreal, Quebec.
My wife, May Chau, native of Hong Kong (China SAR), is also an adept of foods of the world. We are now residing and working in Ottawa, Canada.
Between the two of us, we have visited (and savoured the local delicacies of) over 20 countries.

We hope you will find our blog useful and that you will let us know of your own restaurant discoveries. Who knows, maybe we'll see you at a table next to ours someday. I strongly believe that enjoying good food is an experience that is much more pleasurable when shared.