Gourmet: A Defining Moment
by: Charles Nicholson
Do you remember the first time you had a "gourmet"
delicacy? I do. I was having dinner in a restaurant of
supreme quality and reputation, and I ordered the escargot.
It was the most wonderful entrée I have ever had
the pleasure of consuming. The food there was delicious
and prepared with individuality. Therein is the chief
ingredient for gourmet. The definition of gourmet is a
person devoted to refined sensuous enjoyment, especially
good food and drink. That is the discriminating difference
between McDonald's and Savoy's. Food production for the
masses is a necessity. But it eliminates the wonderful,
sensual, enjoyment to be had in the consumption of a gourmet
Having operated a restaurant for several years, I can
vouch for the truth in the discriminating taste of the
public. Everyone would like a gourmet meal on a shoestring
budget. It is just not a possibility. If you're going
to ask for sensual enjoyment, you're going to have to
pay for that privilege. It's not cheap food. It was not
intended to be. Gourmet food is prepared with the individual
tastes and talents of a trained chef. The use of only
fresh, high, quality ingredients is a must, and strict
adherence to the chef's preferred seasonings required.
Given all this special attention, one must assume the
price to be more than $2.95. But then, I ask you, if it's
gourmet, is price not irrelevant?
Occasionally, we must throw aside our frugal tendencies,
and simply take a moment to enjoy the fruits of our labor.
The gourmet inside us all needs an opportunity now and
then to experience a rare bottle of wine, the finest liver
pate, or the gourmet chocolate of Godiva. That's the wonderful
thing about gourmet. It's very subjective. Your tastes
are not mine.
There are some basics about gourmet that remain no matter
what the taste of the chef or the customer. It isn't gourmet
if it isn't made with quality ingredients, attention to
detail, individuality, and seasonings and flavors that
bring unique richness to the food. To simply include the
words exotic, specialty, or rare does not make food gourmet.
The experience of real gourmet is much bigger than just
Many gourmet chefs and cooks have been apprenticed or
educated formally for several years. They have degrees
in how to uniquely prepare your food. Or maybe the term
gourmet is applied because the preparations and process
have been so refined as to be considered expert in the
field. This is the case with certain wine makers. The
wine is considered gourmet because of the unique sensations
and taste of the wine on the taster's pallet. It is beyond
compare. Many gourmet chefs buy only locally grown foods.
In doing so, they are adding to the uniqueness of the
So, as you can see, gourmet is not just a description.
It is truly an experience to be enjoyed by young and old,
rich and poor. Take a moment, set aside the budget and
allow yourself the extreme pleasure of a gourmet meal.
Ah..... the pleasures of life!
About the Author
Charles Nicholson is an expert Gourmet Chef and operates
a gourmet catering business. Visit http://www.gourmet-foods-and-cooking.com
for great receipes and cooking ideas!