In the end, people want to eat food that tastes good. Everyone has a different definition of what “tastes good”, of course, and it might mean putting ketchup in your mashed potatoes or downing sauerkraut at an alarming rate. However, there are a few things that are universal as far as creating the best taste is concerned. The freshness, preparation, and execution of a dish are all vital to an enjoyable eating experience. Even so, every dish starts with the ingredients. Over-seasoning a low-quality product to give it the illusion of taste is equivalent to putting make-up on a pig. In my opinion, the best dishes are the simple ones, where the meats and veggies aren’t overwhelmed by a lot of spices and sauce.
No one knows that better than Jiro Ono, who prepares sushi for world-class guests and starred in his own documentary, “Jiro Dreams of Sushi.” In the documentary, he laments that fish quality has gone down drastically in recent years, and has even taken items off of his own menu because good product was impossible to find. Even a world class sushi chef, one that strives for perfection and owns a three Michelin star restaurant, can’t put fish back in the ocean. Because of bottom-trawling and overfishing, more people than ever before are able to find fish everywhere at a low cost–but the price is taste.
In the documentary, a huge fish market is depicted as the cornerstone of good taste. The sellers that Jiro deals with don’t just pawn off any fish they catch in the ocean. They only select the best and highest-quality product, and if there’s nothing that matches their standards, they don’t sell anything at all. Unfortunately, such product has become rarer and rarer. Soon, even more items will have to be stripped from the menu, and then nobody can enjoy fish in its purest form. All of the economical and ecological impacts of this aside, doesn’t everyone want what they eat to be delicious? And if you don’t, maybe it’s something that you should consider.