When I think back to the best meals I’ve ever had, it isn’t the food that I remember most. It’s where I was when I had them. It’s the setting that made me feel something so strongly, so close to awe that the dishes have stuck in my mind, easily within reach. Next, it is the people I shared the meal with. And then, of course, the meal itself. Perhaps for you, for a chef or more serious foodie, the order would be different, but all three elements, without doubt, play a role in making one dining experience more extraordinary than another.
Food just seems to taste better, say, on a boat in the middle of the Zambezi River. It could be that it is, simply, better, but it could also be that you pay more attention to all that’s in front of you in a place so alive and wild and different. Your senses dance on their tip-toes, trying to grasp every new waft, taste, scent, sound and sight. All at once. And suddenly, you feel as alive and wild and different as the place you find yourself. The meal, but more importantly, where you’re enjoying it, has transformed you. And we never forget the moments that change us.