It’s said that food is more about the memories created while eating the food than about the food itself. When I think back to some of the killer meals I’ve eaten in my life, the food, amazing in and of itself, may not have been as amazing had I eaten alone. A chef friend of mine told me that he would always shave truffles table side because at the moment that the truffles hit the heat of the food, the aroma become a memory that would never be forgotten – you would always remember that moment in time.
And so, it wasn’t entirely surprising that I picked up a box of the Red Lobster Cheddar Bay Biscuit mix when I saw it on my local grocery store shelf. Maybe snatched is the better word. OK. So Red Lobster isn’t about the best seafood experience you will ever have, but, for me at least, about the memories created while eating there.
As a college student on tight budget, my friends and I could always be found at the Red Lobster closest to campus, usually during their all you can eat shrimp specials. Katie and I would eat so much shrimp it is a wonder we didn’t turn pink and contract mercury poisoning! Sometimes we would just drop in to pick up some Cheddar Bay Biscuits, devouring them before we could ever make it back to the dorms.
On other occasions I went with my friend Kevin. We became close friends through an ex-boyfriend. Since he worked he would always treat me; we didn’t date, but truly enjoyed each other’s company and often talked through relationship issues. It seemed that every time we went we were served by the same waitress Betty, or as we named her, Bitch-slapping Betty. It seemed she was always in a foul mood, made even more foul by the number of times we asked her to refill our biscuit basket, imagining the violence that might, at a moment’s notice, bubble up from her just-below-the-surface roil. And we laughed about the ridiculousness of it all, rolling with laughter the whole way back to campus, always going back for another dose.
And here we are. I haven’t been back to Red Lobster in almost as many years as it has been since I graduated from college. The home biscuit mix is good. The ingredients are just as I remember them, minus one – new memories – which keeps them from tasting just as I remember them.
PS – they don’t reheat well. If you are in limited company just go ahead and gorge on them.