Mr. Foodie in paradise

Published 9:04 pm Thursday, September 16, 2010

I simply could not sleep last Friday night. And for once, it wasn’t one of my bouts with insomnia that was to blame. I had butterflies in my stomach. My palms were all clammy. I tossed and turned with anticipation until I just had to bolt upright and sit in my bed waiting for mid-morning Saturday to come.

I know you are all checking your calendar to see if last Friday was, in fact, Dec. 24. No, last Saturday was an event almost as awesome as Christmas — maybe even more so from a foodie’s perspective. Taste of Suffolk hit Main Street last Saturday, and I was one of first faces there.

Unlike last year, when I was caught a bit off-guard by this fantastic food fest, I came prepared to attack the many food booths with military-style precision.

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First of all, I came with a plastic sack big enough to hold all the delicacies my little heart and huge gut could possibly desire. Next, I made only half-hearted attempts to enjoy the many other wonderful goings-on taking place at the Taste. (I’m very sorry, performers.)

And, last but not least, I stuffed my pockets with plenty of cash to be sure that I would not be lacking when that perfect, irresistible treat or series of treats came along.

In taking this strategic approach to the event, two things happened. First, I managed to get the complete and total Taste of Suffolk in one big bite, so to speak. And second — this has not yet been confirmed by the Guinness Book of World Records people — I may have set the land-speed record for a human being going from zero to absolutely stuffed with food. I would say it took me no less than 0.34 seconds to feel find myself in the midst of a Maalox moment. And it was one of the most wonderful sensations I’ve ever felt.

In total, my final list of items devoured at Taste of Suffolk is as follows: a lemon cake, several pepperoni rolls, a spicy New York sausage, a cup of tomato bisque, an order of shrimp and grits, two small pieces of flantastic cake, an Asian-style barbecue rib, barbecue baked beans and something called a “redneck” taco, filled with pulled pork, coleslaw and hot peppers. And this was all in one sitting.

Normally, I’d feel bad about having consumed so much in a single meal, but it’s Taste of Suffolk, for goodness sake. It may as well be a holiday for food lovers like myself. And as we all know, there’s no diabetes on holidays.

Needless to say, I had a great time. And I enjoyed chatting with all the vendors on hand and the one nice gent, whose name I didn’t catch, who officially dubbed me “Mr. Foodie.”

Too bad that Taste of Suffolk, like tubby ol’ Saint Nick himself, comes but once a year.

Troy Cooper is a page designer for Suffolk Publications. He can be reached at