Tuesday, 6 May 2014

Not so many fat Americans...

Perhaps the Americans are getting the message and possibly they're feeling a little dumbfounded at people poking fun at them all the time because they're overweight. I'm not sure what it is, but while I saw a fair few fat Americans at Chicago O'Hare airport – where they are strapped into extra-wide wheelchairs and pushed around from one gate to another – I've not seen that many morbidly obese Americans here in Indianapolis and this might (just might) be because there are more healthier options on restaurant menus and the city now has a bike share scheme – albeit just a week old – but which I tried out today, and, well, that's it.
Lunch at McCormick & Schmick's, the Hilton, Indianapolis, USA
I have always remarked in conversation about food that the Americans are the only people I know who can take something essentially healthy and then smother it in crap to make it unhealthy, either by deep-frying their vegetables or throwing a load of cheese sauce over a perfectly decent chicken breast. It used to be very difficult to escape this culinary trick of theirs, but then, about a year ago, I was in Los Angeles, or rather I was in Irvine, Ca. in the Hyatt Regency (check out the side panel on the right of this blog and you'll find a post about it) and the food was fantastic. And by 'fantastic' I mean it was light, even the dessert!

Now, in Indianapolis, I've managed to enjoy decent food, mainly seafood, without getting a load of unhealthy rubbish as accompaniments. So, just now, I enjoyed some halibut with a couple of new potatoes and some green beans; yesterday I had trout fillets with kale; last night I had Alaska salmon with brocolli and jasmine rice, at lunch time I had Atlantic salmon with vegetables and asparagus and I've managed to avoid eating red meat. In fact, today, somebody I met at the Indiana Convention Centre told me that the Americans inject growth hormones into their beef and it should be avoided at all costs. Fortunately, the very idea of a burger is completely off my radar at the moment and I've found myself relying entirely on seafood and fish (today I had a rather retro prawn cocktail, although it was called something else, probably a shrimp cocktail, and it was served on a bed of ice).

Since Sunday, my colleague and I have been eating together, apart from on Sunday evening when I crashed early as a result of jet lag and today he wasn't feeling too good so I ate alone in the Capital Grille attached to the Conrad Hotel. I had the prawn, sorry, 'shrimp', cocktail followed by the halibut and a glass of red wine and then I headed back to my hotel on the outskirts of the city and was advised, once again, by a taxi driver. not to venture out on foot. He told me that where there are poor people there are drugs and where there are drugs there are gangs. He said he'd never pick anybody up from this part of town so I've been warned. Once again, he said it was fine downtown, but that on the outskirts of town it was dodgy. Very dodgy.

Getting back to food and drink, while I haven't over done things, I have been enjoying a couple glasses of Cabernet with every meal, which has been very pleasant, but when I return home I'll be giving it a long rest.

For more details on McCormick & Schmick's, click here.

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