Saturday, March 3, 2012

Beer and Loathing in Los Angeles

I just drank more beer than I had consumed in the first 38 1/2 years of my life.... combined. In other words, I just drank a mind-boggling HALF A BOTTLE OF BEER! But more on that in a minute!

Today, I did my first round of grocery shopping since I began this project. In addition to the large pile of foods that I actually know I enjoy, I came home with 6 Weird Things that I think I hate, or that I have never had. This week's food contestants are:

1) Lamb's Quarter (I had never heard of it either! So, even if I have never eaten a lamb, soon I will at least have eaten Lamb's Quarter!)
2) Daikon
3) Parsnips
4) Cranberry Juice
5) Root Vegetable Chips
6) 1 bottle of pale ale

I started tackling that list almost the moment we got home. I made a veganized version of Grilled Cheese with Tomatoes and Olive Tapanade for lunch. They were delicious, BTW! With them, I tore right into that bag of Root Vegetable Chips. You know what I mean, right?

I've had chips like these before, but never enjoyed myself. There sure aren't many kinds of snack chips that I don't like, but I was never a fan of these things, especially the taro chips. I thought very hard about what I disliked about them. First, the texture is hard and dense, not light and crispy like a potato chip. And the flavor is more sweet than salty, again, not like a potato chip. At this point, I realized it was my own prejudice that had been my problem all these years. See, I LOVE potato chips. As with hummus, potato chips are not allowed in my house, or bad things happen. I needed to consider these Root Vegetable Chips on their own merit, and not compare them to their more delicious cousin, Potato Chips. Once I stopped myself from feeling sad that I wasn't eating potato chips, but accepted that these Root Vegetable Chips were their own thing, well, they started to grow on me almost immediately. I could willingly eat these at a party.... that is, if there aren't any potato chips there to demand all of my attention!

Now, for a biggie. Beer. Guys, I am not merely indifferent to beer. I actively HATE it. The smell of it, the taste of it, yuck! I am 100% sure that I have this problem because I didn't drink at all during high school or college. Had I been a teenage drinker, I surely would have acquired a taste for beer before I acquired a driver's license! So, I'm coming to this game really late.... but I'm gonna try. I mean, beer was literally invented BEFORE THE WHEEL. Seriously! Every culture on the Earth that drinks alcohol at all, drinks some variety of beer. Time for me to try and join the human race. :-)

My husband is not a beer fan either, so he agreed to share the bottle with me. We took a whiff of it, causing me to make a horrible face, and him to exclaim, "It smells like my father's breath!" I managed to drink my entire half bottle, not without grimacing and complaining the whole time, but I did it. My issues with beer are apparently it's urine-like aroma and yeasty flavor. And this was with the palest, wussiest beer that Trader Joe's had to offer! At this point, I would rather drink a bathtub full of Earl Grey or Champagne than a bottle of beer. But I will persist. One bottle of beer per week for me, until I am doing the unimaginable and happily downing the darkest, beer-iest bottle of this drek that I can find.


  1. I too loathe beer, despite having consumed many a plastic tumbler of it in college. What can I say? It was free. Ralph loves Guinness, but in my opinion, the darker the more dreadful. I will say that in the middle of summer, I do sometimes find a very cold Hefeweizen palatable. The cold factor is key for me; it seems to take the bitter edge off. Also, I take mine with a little squeeze of lemon. I recommend giving it a try. :)

    1. Thank you! I will certainly give it a try! It's hard to imagine being able to tolerate a pale beer, never mind one of those dark ones, but Hubby and I are both trying!