For lunch today, I brought in the most amazing chickpea salad. Not usually a dazzling dish, but here's what was different: I bought the chickpeas at a stand at the Mercado de San Miguel, which I visited when I was in Spain for the Madrid Fusión chefs' congress. The quality of those chickpeas was outstanding, and so is my memory of the event (more on that from gastro-globe-trotter Anya von Bremzen)—what I learned there, who I met, what I tasted. For anyone who has ever chased after epicurean enlightenment, on the road or at home, this travel issue is an ideal guide.
I have built up a very nice collection of taste memories during the years I've been at F&W, but I'd do anything to get inside Paula Wolfert's head. One of the greatest cooking explorers of all time, Paula has changed the way Americans think about Mediterranean food. She has more taste memories than a thousand cooks. If I could see the world, even for just a day, from her point of view, I know I would better understand every nuance of every dish. Since that's not possible, the next best thing is reading Emily Kaiser's piece, "Paula Wolfert Rediscovers Marrakech". I'll make the lamb stew with noodles to bring me one step closer to Wolfert-ness.
While Paula brings tradition to the fore, the Go List, compiled by our stellar travel editor, Jen Murphy, and our incomparable restaurant editor, Kate Krader, tackles the new. We found powerful food obsessions that have circled the globe (coffee, chocolate), as well as restaurant trends like casual food from exalted chefs.
Our story on tacos unites tradition, travel and trend. Tacos are the chefs' darling of the moment, offering value, flavor and fun. I'll definitely make the fresh-chorizo-potato tacos. Then I'll have one more taste memory for my collection.
Where I'm Coming From
From My Recent Atlanta Expedition:
Richard Blais's "burger boutique" is mod, ambitious and delicious. The famed marshmallow-and-Nutella milk shake delivered. And sweetbread nuggets were an excellent surprise.
There is no better breakfast in the world than sweets-savant Kamal Grant's Fresh Strawberry N Cream doughnut. Unless, of course, you want one of his 27 other flavors.
At this Japanese restaurant, incredible dishes like the kimmedai fish tempura were both visually arresting and innovative.
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