Last night a pink-shirted Andrew Zimmern waltzed from one extraordinary Bostonian culinary experience to another as the Travel Channel aired its local episode of the show Bizarre Foods America. All in all, Zimmern managed to provide an inspiring snapshot of the city's food scene while hitting a balance of hotspots and neighborhood favorites: the places you already go to and the places you drool over and pray to go to. Zimmern went dogfish fishing in sight of Boston harbor, dropped in on Harvard's Science and Cooking series, ate urchin and powdered foie gras topped with parsnip milk foam in the kitchen of Clio and gleefully ingested cannoli at Maria's Pastry Shop and gelato at Caffe Paradiso, thereby compromising some of his requisite bizarreness for requisite Bostonness.
Something about the Boston food scene brought out the shifting tone of Zimmern's message, which has increasingly included talk of sustainability and the preservation of foods and the livelihoods of food producers. He encouraged viewers to sample dogfish, whose numbers in our waters seem to suggest that they are ripe for harvesting but whose lowly reputation keeps them off of most plates. (The next monkfish, anyone?) He described oysters as a sustainable alternative source of protein, saying Island Creek Oysters are "celebrated as the best tasting oyster in America."
Other accolades were doled out to O Ya, which he considers one of the top five restaurants in the country. He also dubbed steamers to be a nose to tail eating experience in miniature, even though clams have neither noses nor tails. For Boston Magazine's interview with Zimmern, see here, and for clips from the episode see here.
Think Zimmern got Boston right? Where would you have sent him? Let us know in the comments.
· All Andrew Zimmern coverage on Eater [-EB-]
· All Clio coverage on eater [-EB-]
· All Science and Cooking coverage on Eater [-EB-]
· All Island Creek Oysters on Eater [-EB-]
· All O Ya coverage on Eater [-EB-]
· Bizarre Foods: Boston [Travel Channel]
· Q+A: Andrew Zimmern, host of ‘Bizarre Foods America’ [BM]