Have you ever noticed how even the faint aroma of something you ate on a vacation instantly takes you back to the moment you experienced it. Tasting an Argentinian Malbec transports me to a tasting room in Mendoza. The smell of galangal and lime instantly brings to mind the Thai cooking class we took in Chiang Mai.
Even the sight of choclo (really large corn) gets me excited for the intense flavors of Peruvian food. Just “big corn”, as I call it, elicits an unreasonable amount of excitement from me.
You see, food is powerful. It has the ability to shape your journey and define your memories. Food is also an essential part of life and community. It's what makes us who we are as a people.
Without it there is no authentic travel experience. It's the times we congregate around a dinner table with newly formed friends, get invited to lunch with a local family or take time for a picnic in a vineyard that we remember the most.
Not necessarily because of the food itself – although if it's good that's an added bonus – but because those are the moments when the best memories are made.