The town of Goldendale Washington is very quiet on Labor Day weekend, apparently everyone leaves except for a couple of tourists like us. Â Not far at all from the Columbia Gorge and a fine place to stay.
Also, if you’re in the area definitely make time to visit the Goldendale Observatory. Â Fabulous experience! Â Great views of the moon and our friendly local planets. Â Super fun, friendly and knowledgeable staff.
I love Asian grocery stores, because I like unusual food. Â So I couldn’t resist the Wonderfarm brand White Fungus Bird’s Nest drink. Â The can claims the ingredients are: water, sugar, white fungus and bird’s nest. Â It’s a clear liquid with chunks of white stuff floating in it. Â Oddly enough, it tastes like a liquid twinkie. Â The Wonderfarm web site claims this stuff is a “health supplement”. Â Nothing like a whole lotta sugar to turbo-up your health performance. Â Frankly, this stuff is kinda boring. Â Other than looking a little weird, it doesn’t bring anything to the game.
But then there’s Pocky. Â I happen to love Pocky. Â I could not turn down the chance to try some “Men’s Pocky”. Â At last! Â Pocky – for him! Ok, it’s dark chocolate Pocky, and of course, it’s delicious. Â WTF it has to do with Testosterone-Americans, I can’t say. Â Perhaps if you eat enough of it you become a sumo wrestler. Â Not a bad idea, really.
Oh my this is good stuff.Â The sweet taste of milk chocolate with a smooth lingering flavor of quality smokey / salty bacon.Â This is the kind of chocolate where a small bite satisfies, and you’ll keep coming back for those bites.Â You’ll be thinking to yourself, “Self, have I done enough good in the world to deserve another bite?” The answer is likely to be “yes!” but in order to taste something this good it feels like it needs to be a trade of some kind.
Well, to be more specific, finding a North American Chorizo that can stand up to Spanish-made Chorizo in a fight… Â That’s what I’m looking for. Â When you sit yrselfs down to snack on a bit of chorizo when you’re just off the plane in Barajas it’s a full-body experience. Â The magic of Pork and Paprika relaxes your body and you think, “mmm yeah, that’s the stuff.”
Here in the Pacific Northwest sometimes one can find chorizo from Idaho that claims to be made in the Basque style. Â There’s also Mexican style chorizo to be found, but I feel Mexican chorizo is distant enough from the olde world that it deserves to be considered on it’s own merits. Â What I want is a snacking chorizo. The importance of snacking in one’s lifeÂ cannot be underestimated. Â The act of snacking should refresh both the mind and spirit. Â Give one the strength to carry on, a boost to your heels, a smile to your lips. Â An appropriate snack should also contribute to your good health, not just cover you in neon-colored artificial cheez debris and GMO Korn(tm) chunklets.
Spanish snacking technology is far beyond anything we’ve developed here. Â The Spanish really know how to snack. Â They also have the best pork products I’ve had the good fortune to enjoy. Â I don’t know if it’s the pork, the paprika or just the processing they do differently, but I haven’t found a new world chorizo that’s got the same zing. Â That won’t stop me from trying to find one, however.
Finding any kind of chorizo is a challenge in Portland. Â Yesterday I was at Zupan’s and brought home two packages of Venetian brand Chorizo “Spanish Style Sausage” from Hamilton, Ontario and one actual Spanish Chorizo from Palacios AlimentaciÃ³n S.A. (http://www.palacios.es/). Â Here’s the good news – the Venetian brand is pretty good! Â It compares well with the Palacios. Â The sad news is it looks like even though the two Venetian chorizos were packaged differently, to my tongue they are the same product.
So there’s hope for North America! Â Keep an eye out for Venetian brand, and snacking students, your homework is to keep tasting. Â Lunch is out there – now go find it!