Thursday, August 27, 2009

Lobster or Leave It

The Engineer and I have never traveled anywhere together where we must make important daily decisions. For example:  what to do today?  Where to go today?  And most importantly, what to eat today?  (for the record, we always seem to travel to weddings together that happen in tropical all-inclusive resorts or Disneyland).


They say that to really know a person you must travel with them.  You see all their annoying quirks and habits.  I must now face the music, the Engineer is about to see my odd vacation habit.

It’s not so much a habit as much as a picky, annoying, anal retentive quirk.  And it rears its ugly head when it’s time to eat.

I will eat pretty much anything.  I will, however, not eat pretty much anywhere.

It’s as if I get these ideas in my head about what food I should be eating whilst on vacation and will not let it rest until I am satisfied.  Food is very important to me, and my travels.  I think the way to really experience the world is through food.  What’s Osaka without okonomiyaki?  Or Seville without tapas?  Nothing, that’s what.

We’re in Cape Cod.  To me that equals delicious, fresh seafood and bowls of clam chowder.  But now that we’re here, I have discovered something about Cape Cod.  It’s made for families.  And with families come big, cheesy restaurants with food to suit the everyday appetite.  IE. Pub grub.

Don’t get me wrong!  I am not against the family eatery/chain restaurant.  Okay, fine, maybe I am.  But let’s face it.  When you are in your very very late twenties (I only have a few more weeks of having the privilege of saying that) and you are with you romantic partner, it isn’t exactly fun to sit amidst screaming children and their parents begging them to eat one more chicken strip.

 The other night we drove up and down the main street (and only street with food) looking for my lobster.  We stopped first at a famous Cape Cod chain that serves lobster bisque AND broiled lobster.  It was fluorescent lit, counter service, and full of children/old people  Ick.

 So I made us go to another establishment.  This one was ridiculously expensive without lobster bisque (which was now on my brain).  Then I dashed across the street to another restaurant (see the annoying pattern here?) which was worse than a Red Lobster.  It was decorated with large red lobsters, smelled of Lysol and was empty.  No go.

Everywhere else?  Closed.  It’s a family destination and 8pm is bedtime.

Back to the first restaurant because I was having my damn bisque.  It wasn’t so bad.  It smelled good.  And we could sit outside. 

After eating though, the only good thing about this place was the red lobster pager that lit up when my food was ready.

The platter itself was enticing (note the colour – we are the ONLY people to order broiled seafood, everyone else is all about the fried) but it lacked, well flavor.  The bisque?  It had hearty chunks of lobster (which were yummy) but had the consistency of mayonnaise.  Ummmm.  Wrong.  I think I ate a pound of butter in my four bites.  Bites and lobster bisque do not belong in the same sentence.

The Engineer and I agreed to eat our next meal at the Vietnamese place in town.  Sure Pho isn’t exactly Cape Cod but it is going to be delicious.

 But was it open?  No.  So I made us drive to the Thai place.  Closed.  Then we did a repeat of the night before.  Except we covered two towns.  TWO!  We passed several large eateries touting the lobster but they all looked . . . pedestrian. 

See?  There it is.  My horrible, annoying habit.  I am a food SNOB.  SNOB!  I just can’t stand run of the mill restaurants with food prepared by cooks getting paid $8/hour.  I am not a fan of plastic booths and paper place mats.  I’m just not.  What is the point of eating the calories and spending the money on bad food? 

I will search out for hours or not eat at all.  We did end up at another Thai restaurant and it was the first meal in Cape Cod that made me feel satisfied, not like I was going to die with too much cream and fried fat. By the way, I like cream and fried fat, if done well.

We topped it off with a round of mini-golf and some incredible ice cream.  At least the Cape does that well. 

 The Engineer?  He told me that my annoying habit didn’t annoy him.  And he was happy to find somewhere to eat that would make me happy. 

 Am I lucky or what?

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