According to Collins Dictionary, a gourmet is “a person who cultivates a discriminating palate for the enjoyment of good food and drink”. That’s quite a good description of me, although I do not only enjoy good food and wine, but also like to cook and select matching wines. I’m a guy (1974) from the Netherlands, living near Amsterdam. On this blog I intend to share my experiences with cooking, eating at restaurants, visiting wineries, and related topics. Other than you might think, all of this is just a hobby for me: I work in the financial industry as a financial risk manager. When I’m not cooking or working, I also try to find some time to read (in Italian to keep up my Italian), play the piano, sing, and travel. (Of course food and wine are usually important factors in my travels.)
I’ve always enjoyed sharing my enthusiasm for cooking, good food and wine with others. It gives me a big thrill when my sharing leads to someone trying something new or developing an interest for wine or cooking. I’ve had a home page on the internet since 1995, where I’ve shared some of my recipes almost from the start. Back in those days the ‘easiest’ way to create a page was to write HTML code using Notepad, so it was quite laborious to share stuff and that is part of the reason why I did not post regular updates. The other reason was a lack of interaction. Posting recipes into a ‘void’ and not knowing if more than a few friends actually read and try them isn’t that much fun.
Nowadays interaction has been made easy thanks to Facebook and there is no more need to write HTML to post stuff on the web. I had been sharing some of my cooking and eating experiences and winery visits on Facebook, but there it’s mixed up with unrelated posts, only seen by my Facebook friends and moves out of sight quickly as new messages are posted. Kees suggested to me that I should really start a blog, since that would be a more suitable medium to keep an organized record of my experiences. One that in the future can be used by others (and myself) as a body of knowledge. And he was right, so here I am!
I strive to share every single interesting experience with respect to food and wine. I hope you’ll enjoy it as much as I do, and hopefully my blog will inspire you to try new things or develop new interests, as well as help you cook better and more easily!
I’ve been cooking for myself, my husband, as well as family and friends on a daily basis for 20 years now. As you may conclude from browsing the recipes published in this blog, I cook mostly Italian and ‘from scratch‘, and I often use a novel cooking technique called ‘sous-vide‘. My love for good wine is a more recent development, that started in 2004 when I had the first glass of wine that I really liked. It was a Pouilly-Fumé from Masson-Blondelet, and on the way back from a vacation in Portugal we visited the winery where it came from and bought some bottles. And some other Sancerre and Pouilly-Fumé on the same trip as well. That was the start of our wine collection, and it’s gotten slightly out of hand since then (now we have a collection of around 1000 bottles in 5 wine fridges).
Something else that you may regard as gotten out of hand is that I have learned Italian just to be able to communicate with Italians about food and wine, and read Italian recipes. I have even started a blog in Italian with a selection of the recipes found here, to practice my Italian and to hopefully get more feedback from Italians on my cooking.
If you have any questions about cooking (especially Italian or sous-vide) or about matching a wine to your dish or about anything you read on this blog, I would be happy to respond! I do not pretend to know everything, but if I do not know the answer already and find your question interesting, I may do some research for you. All questions and answers will be posted on the blog.
You can send me your question as a comment to a post or a comment on this page below.