Aside from ingredients, taste, freshness, cooking techniques... a huge part of eating is the environment. And nothing makes me happier than being at the source of my food.
While I was in taiwan, my mother's cousins took me to the north coast of Taiwan for seafood. Something I learned: if there is swimming allowed, then there aren't any good seafood restaurants around. If there are good seafood restaurans around, then there is no swimming allowed. Makes sense once you think about it... do you really want to eat fish that's been hanging out with kids who poop in the ocean and people who have sunscreen slathered on them?
It is rocky shores and large waves here. It was rainy so I didn't ask them to pull over to take pictures, but, as I always tell myself - there's always next time!
Being able to talk to the person who actually catches your fish is something you will never be able to do at Red Lobster. Everything here is alive. Nothing is killed until you cook it.
象牙蚌 / xiang4 ya2 bang4 / no idea what this is called in English.
My favorite part is being able to touch everything. I know you aren't supposed to play with food... but it's so much fun! This thing started squirting out water which caught me off guard.
龍蝦 / long2 xia1 / lobster
you're welcome to touch anything and everything, at your own risk of course! you're the customer, and you have the right to touch and be absolutely sure of what you are about to buy and consume. (all the germs get killed while cooking, i suppose) this is something that the US would throw a fit over, can you imagine grabbing the raw fish or meat you want to buy at the grocery store??
Something you should get used to in this rural restaurants: people who don't work in the restaurant but try to sell you things directly in the restaurant. This lady was selling peanuts. At another restaurant, a lady came in selling ginger. They are locals who just visit all the restaurants to sell the things they grow. There is no obligation to buy from them, so don't feel bad if you don't buy anything.
花生 / hua1 sheng 1 /peanuts
I wonder, what's the difference between food styling and playing with food? In my opinion, none, because they are both so fun!
but all that beautiful white disappears because you dip it in soy sauce and wasabi (i passed on the wasabi). then you chew chew chew!