A Smart Foodie

A foodie is known for seeking out new food experiences as pleasure rather than merely dining out based on convenience or hunger. Their goal is to immerse totally into the experience as a journey. Here are several suggestions to change from a mere diner out and grow into a Smart Foodie.

One key to dining out successfully is to always check a restaurant menu in advance. A smart foodie wants to know upon entering a restaurant for the first time what the house specialties are and what piques their curiosity. Looking at a restaurant’s web own site or at Yelp!, Zagat, or Urban Spoon can set an expectation and plant the seed for entrées which will stretch the palate.

Upon reading the menu, Smart Foodies look beyond the entrees meat, sauce, starch and sides with a deeper description for the spices. The recent popularity of cilantro shows how a spice adds boldness or nuisance to a dish. Just a dash of cilantro will give beef, seafood and poultry a real boost, as if it was straight from the Caribbean, Latin America, or the Far East.

Smart foodies with special dietary requirements always do pre-meal planning. Since checking a label for ingredients is nearly impossible when out, smart foodies come into the restaurant knowing what is in and out of bounds for their diet. To counter acidic tastes, High Fructose Corn Syrup is added to many tomato based favorites including pizza sauce, salsa, red pasta sauces or even tomato soup. For someone with diabetes, hidden HFCS will cause quite serious blood sugar spikes and should be avoided.  

Smart foodies practice portion control. Many restaurants serve diners enormous quantities of food, far beyond what someone would eat at home. When ordering an entrée, Smart Foodies request the server bring a take-out container along with the meal. Once served, they divide the entrée in half, place one portion directly into the to-go box, close the lid and push it to the far end of the table.  They then finish only what’s on their plate. As their appestat kicks in, a smart foodie feels satisfied, not overstuffed.

Smart foodies use shrewd strategies to take their taste buds on a journey to where it never has gone before. Upon the meal’s conclusion, they leave the table with both a filling meal and an interesting story that they will almost always share.

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