Saveur’s Top 100: #85, Ginger Altoids

I purchased The Saveur 100 yesterday—the yearly masterlist of all things vital in the culinary world. Of course, any list like this is arbitrary (see, for example, People’s Sexiest Man Alive issue—if it weren’t arbitrary, I’d surely be in there along with Don Knotts), and so one must take it with a grain of salt. At its best, The Saveur 100 can turn you on to things that you might not have been turned on to. For example, a past issue of the Saveur 100 turned me on to…ummm…something, I’m sure. Now I don’t remember what it is. But I’m sure I still love it.

This year’s list has some eye-rollers. For example, why is the #6 most important thing in food this year a website that features Shakespeare food quotes? This is it. Actually, it’s kind of cool. I take back my criticism. In fact, I’ll use this Shakespearean ginger quote as my segue:

Twelfth Night, II, 3:

CLOWN: Yes, by Saint Anne, and ginger shall be hot i’ the mouth too.

The #85 most important thing in food is this:


Ginger Altoids. Sayeth Saveur: “These little things don’t just improve your breath; they take your breath away. Ginger Altoids pack a spicy wallop–and each one leaves you eager for another one.”

To test this theory I sampled two Ginger Altoids. The following is what went on in my brain while sucking said Altoids.

Ginger Altoid #1: Hmm, ok, feels chalky in my mouth. Small. Moving it around. Suddenly, some flavor–it’s sweet and gingery. Tates like gingerbread without the bread. But not so powerful, yet. Just very mild. Easy. Nice. Ahhh. Wait. Hmmm. This is getting spicier. What’s happening? My mouth is growing numb. This ginger is hot hot hot. Ouch. I am not enjoying this. Chew chew chew!

(Altoid chewed and ingested. Time passes. Another Altoid sampled.)

Ginger Altoid #2: I don’t know why I’m trying this again. I didn’t really enjoy the first one. Here we go again. Ok, ok, so far so good. Bland again. Powdery. Ginger. Sweet. Mmm. Nice. Wait. Here it comes. Heat heat heat. Wow, that is spicy. Ouch. Cough. Hack. ACK ACK ACK


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