The basis for Amy Trubek’s writing is how the environment of a region food comes from affects the flavor; terroir as it is known in France. The reading delves deep into how the origin and environment a food is grown or raised in affects the flavor, an idea that came to be through creation of region specific wines in France. The idea was promoted that grapes grown in different areas will produce different flavored wines. This was an attempt to protect their methods and prevent their wine from being copied, claiming it could not be done with grapes from another area. Trubek compares terroir to the farming culture in Vermont. Vermont Fresh Network attempts to create a similar “taste of place” when selling produce to local markets and restaurants. It was brought up that farmers promote this idea in order to create identity for their area, put themselves on the map. Trubek, in the last section of the reading, discusses the non-profit organization Slow Food, which hails from Northern Italy. This organization aims to promote a Euro Nationalist version of French terroir. The owner believes that in order for a food to be authentic it must have been sourced from farms utilizing traditional European methods. Trubek notes that the consumption of local foods allow for wider possibility for people as terroir is influenced by geography, not confined to a specific region.
The takeaway to me is that taste of place is merely a psychological phenomenon, the idea that two foods grown in identical ways in two different locations is a bit of a stretch. For example, if two steaks were served with no knowledge of sourcing and prepared in the same manner, people would not be able to tell a difference. However, if prior to consumption the consumer was informed that one was sourced from the best farmers in the area and the other was from costco clearly the consumer would say the farmer’s beef tastes far superior.