Menus are like a story – they tell me about a restaurant before I even taste the food. The aesthetic of the pages, the fonts of the words and the design all play into the theme. The way a restaurant describes the food paints a picture of the dish before it is even delivered. I could sit for 30 minutes sipping a coffee or cocktail reading a menu before making a decision on what to order.
Friends and family give me a hard time because they know that I am always going to be the one at the table who asks the waiter a question about the menu. I want to hear their insight and get their expertise on the menu after I’ve carefully reviewed the list of appetizers, salads, sandwiches, entrees and sides. It takes me a little longer to order not because I’m indecisive, but because as I read every dish I am picturing how it is going to look, taste and smell.
Before I order something I try to visualize in my mind how all the ingredients will come together and what it will taste like. What will the texture be? Chewy, crunchy, smooth, tender? Is it hot or cold? Am I in the mood for sweet or savory? Ordering breakfast or brunch food is always a little more of a challenge for me. It is my favorite meal of the day and I am always in a battle of sweet or savory. My heart tells me waffles and pancakes, but my mind tells me eggs Benedict or scrambles.
One day in my food journey, I would love the opportunity to be a part of the development of a menu or restaurant concept. It is an undertaking that I do not underestimate, but it sincerely would be an incredible experience. While the food would of course be the star of the show, I would be so excited to tell it’s story on a menu – carefully picking the layout, fonts, colors, descriptions and theme of the menu. Next time you are at a restaurant, I hope you can find a new appreciation for the menu and maybe even review it with a more careful eye.
Love food. Love self. Love life.