The Best Meal in the World

What’s the best meal in the world? 

It’s such a personal question, so I add “in my experience”. 

I will never experience all the meals. 

But I have enjoyed many extremely fine ones. 

I know. It doesn’t seem likely. But in addition to writing hilarious, hard-hitting posts online, and an award-winning novel, Andrew is interested in dining at the world’s top restaurants. We’ve dined at:

Astrid Y Gaston in Lima
Alinea in Chicago
Gaggan in Bangkok
Attica in Melbourne
The Ledbury in London
Amber in Hong Kong
La Colombe in Cape Town
Le Chateubriand in Paris

But when I think back to the best meals of my life, I think there is great satisfaction found in relishing good local food made with love, by those I love best… back when my tastebuds were at at their peak. 

My grandma Koop’s waffles and white sauce. 

Her yeast donuts.

That cheesecake made with cottage cheese from the milk on our dairy farm, that my mom made for my birthday that year. 

The pork we all enjoyed right after a family butcher bee. 

So very many of my mom’s soups. 

And her bread! Brown bread made with molasses. White buns as fluffy as air. Served with butter, fresh-made with cream from our cows. I don’t think anything can match it. 

Peas stolen from the garden and surreptitiously eaten when no one was looking. 

Carrots pulled up and eaten with dirt as a seasoning, as I stood barefoot in the garden, feeling the simultaneously warm crust of the earth, wiggling my toes to sink a little lower and feeling the cool earth beneath. 

My mom’s roasted turkey, served for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Enjoyed with cranberry sauce from a can. Best.

Her chicken noodle soup. 

Her vereniki. 

Friday night pizza, that we made together.

All those were a special kind of magic, a special kind of delicious that I’m not sure can ever be replicated. I’m grateful for the chance to eat at the restaurants Andrew has listed… these have been incredibly amazing experiences. But as for the best meal in the world? In my opinion? In my experience? Probably has a lot to do with family on the farm where I grew up.

(Pictured: a rhubarb pie my mom baked fresh for me today, just as delicious as ever.)