There's an old joke that asks why women fake orgasms.
Excusez-moi, may I amuse your bouche?
Answer: Because men fake foreplay.
Okay, I know what you're thinking: Not another sex-filled food column. But wait, there's a point: In Sexy Feast, I'll go out each week to an area restaurant, find something sexy to eat, and report back with a lesson in love. The dish itself might be sexy, or, even better, teach us something about sex and relationships. After all, sex and food are both about pleasure, right?
Now you're probably wondering: So who is he to take on this task? And what makes this different than all the other food porn I'm seeing here?
Voracious has a talented roster of writers making sexual jokes involving sausage fest-filled orgies with great racks and balls, but now there's a real sex (and food) fiend on staff. In addition to years of freelance food writing (with a big case of Gastrolust), I'm a professional sex educator, certified by the American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors, and Therapists (a fancy way of saying I'm legit). After seven years with Planned Parenthood, I've been touring the college lecture circuit full time since 1992, delivering my insights and outbursts on love, sex and dating to students around the country and beyond. And now I'm here to share some tender morsels with you.
Which brings us back to the foreplay joke.It's easy to be goal-oriented with sex, and it's the same with food. I recently visited the newly opened Copperleaf Restaurant at Cedarbrook Lodge, reading a menu that told the tale of a great night ahead: a chef's tasting of asparagus salad, halibut with heirloom tomatoes and sweet corn, pork belly with garden turnips, grilled strip loin with spring vegetables, and fromage blanc ice cream. Oh...and a happy ending of Theo's hot chocolate. So imagine my surprise--and delight--when a picturesque plate hit the table.
From the French amuser ("to amuse" or "to please") and bouche ("mouth"), an amuse-bouche is something unexpected, something you don't order, a greeting from the chef in the form of a small bite to tickle the taste buds--to amuse the mouth. I'd been so focused on the courses ahead, mouth already watering, that I admittedly didn't hear the server's description of the dish when he put it before me. All the more reason I took it in breathlessly, appreciating the sight of the delicate edible flower, the taste of the chicken confit, and the smell and texture of the truffled potato puree--all sitting in a stunningly green pool of parsley coulis.
Consider Copperleaf's dish your sexual amuse-bouche. When partaking in the pleasures of the flesh, enjoy the unexpected. Take small bites. Don't rush. And don't be goal-oriented. Appreciate the stimulation of the senses for what it is. Orgasms are great, but don't assume a before in foreplay. Sex isn't the entrée or the dessert, but the whole meal. So welcome to your Sexy Feast. We've got a lot of menus to explore.