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Thursday, December 27, 2012

Parting Words

Two and a half years ago, I opened Foraging Foodies with the intention to explore the Carolinas and share my eating discoveries. With that in mind, I dined my way through the South, meeting some really incredible people along the way who put out some really incredible dishes, and in general learned more about food then I ever imagined I would.

And I wrote. And wrote. And wrote, about everything I could find and share about. It was an invigorating experience finding a new gem and sharing it with the public, a feeling which I still can't fully describe. And you all responded, with more warmth and generosity then I could have ever imagined, for which I am eternally grateful.

Two years later though, with all the knowledge and experience I accrued, Foraging Foodies suddenly didn't feel like the direction I wanted to be. I've grown so passionate about everything local, from farm to table, in the hands of locals working for the love of their community and their craft, so much so that the idea of criticizing the hardworking locals who have put so much effort into adding to their community became too awful to think of. I've also learned so much about the culture of food and began understanding the many different ways food acts as an expression of self, and have made so many new friendships through that. Talking about restaurants wasn't enough for me anymore, not when there is so much more to say. Filled with new questions and ideas, I finally decided that I needed to move on to new adventures to keep growing and understanding everything I've come to learn in my short time as a foodie. So with great sadness, I have decided to shutdown Foraging Foodies, to pursue those desires.

Before we depart from foraging foodies, however, I wanted to list some gems that never got the opportunity to make the blog, because there are many out there, more than I could ever list in just a single post. I wish I had the time to go and do these fine eateries the justice they deserve, but I will instead leave it in your hands to go and check these recommendations out, and perhaps you can give the community your own words of wisdom.

The Unmentioned, for Columbia, SC:
Cellar on Greene - One of the best romantic deals in Columbia with their $19 three course meal, of which is so substantial and delicious, it is a shock to behold.
Sunming - The best Chinese food in Columbia, and the most authentic. Bring friends and share a family meal off the Chinese menu. Yes, those exist.
Crust - Amazing, amazing foccacia, and really good bread. Come early, they sell out fast.
No Name Deli - Cash only, just flat out good local fast food. Be prepared when you walk in, it's like the soup nazi in there.
Chocolate Nirvana Bakery - Tucked away in the historic houses of Columbia is perhaps one of the most decadent, moist chocolate flourless cupcakes you've ever had in your life. Really cute location too.
Lady Antoinette's - If you haven't heard of their beignets, you are missing out.
Motor Supply Bistro - How have I not talked about this place? It's amazing, just go. Possibly best brunch in the city.
Camon Sushi Bar - Stashed away on the side of Assembly St. where surely no one looks is one of the coolest places you can go for a quiet, not really authentic but still just really solid piece of sushi.
Bombay Grill - In my experience, the current champion of Indian food in the city. Prices are unusually affordable for Indian, and just flat out good. It is without a doubt better than Spice Junction in my book, don't let anyone tell you otherwise.
Terra - Well-deserving of all the praise it receives as one of the city's finest, and no where near as wallet breaking as you may think with their weekly specials.
Original Pancake House - It is a chain, but I really don't care, because it's mighty fine diner food, packed with bacon.
Just Us Cafe - Even more diner-ish than Original Pancake, but with even bigger portions.
Golden Chopstix - Just a terrible name and location in general, but the massuman curry here will blow your mind.

The Others:
McCabes BBQ, Manning, SC - The absolute best sweet potatoes I've ever had, and just a great buffet in general in that classic South Carolina way.
Autobanh Food Truck, Charleston, SC - Fried chicken banh mi with pickled okra and sriracha-honey drizzle. You are welcome.
Glazed Gourmet, Charleston, SC - The greatest donuts you will ever have in your life.
Voodoo, West Ashley (Charleston), SC - Truffle fried tater tots and bacon s'mores and it's a tiki bar and really do I need to say more?
Parker's, Wilson, NC - East Carolina bbq in the most delicious way. Amazing fried chicken, great sides, and ridiculously awesome prices. Just ten minutes off I-95, well-worth a stop.

And that's it. Again, I want to take everyone for their support and just taking the time to read any and all of what I've wrote here at Foraging Foodies. It's been a real honor, and I hope to see you all in my future foodie endeavors. Until then, keep on foraging folks, the world's waiting for you.