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Zicam tasting party (berry, berry disappointing)

You heard it here first: miracle fruit is an urban myth devised by the communist rebels of Congo to topple the US sugar industry .


OK, so there might be mitigating circumstances. I am coming off a minor head cold and have been attacking my taste buds with Zicam all week, which is an enormously disgusting substance. Aside from being only marginally more effective than snake oil, the makers of Zicam have also been sued (and have since settled out of court) for affecting the sense of smell and taste. So, there is a good chance my experience was compromised.

Lemons tasted like lemons. Guinness tasted like Guinness. Grapes tasted like grapes. Ketchup tasted like ketchup. Cranberry juice was more sweet, than tart. Red wine vinegar was still quite acidic, but had a lingering sweet finish. My Tabasco soaked wedge of melon was just gross (I was going for the flavor of chocolate smores with that one).

I couldn’t tell if it worked for most people, because I believe the concept of wisdom of crowds is an urban myth, too. Crowds are no wiser than your average sheeple. A few people were really excited that beer that tasted like chocolate, but it was a chocolate ale they were drinking. I saw a group trying to polish off an entire bottle of cheap tequila, which was supposed to taste like Patron, though I am pretty sure they were more interested in a cheap buzz (nothing wrong with that, btw). I saw a few of them walking away saying “that stuff does not taste smooth”.

People who’s palates I do trust seemed nonplussed by the whole thing. Jay Francis was handing out his own personal supply of some supplement that kills your ability to taste sweet, like some drug dealer at a rave, which might have been the most amusing part of the night.

Oh and the anonymous eater guy told some couple to go to Dolce Vita as they were entering La Strada. Changing the world one dining experience at a time. Much respect.

One thing I did learn is that Jenny is an absolute force of nature. If I owned a restaurant, I’d put her in charge of PR, kick back and collect the benjamins. Some 100+ people showed up for the party, which seems like a staggering number for an event like this.  Berry, berry impressive.

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1 Katie { 07.26.08 at 8:42 am }

Wow! And here I was dying of jealousy. Can’t wait to find out what everybody else thought…

2 Misha { 07.26.08 at 8:51 am }

You win the prize for fastest comment ever! Congratulations!

3 rr { 07.26.08 at 10:23 am }

thats awesome!

4 neverfull { 07.26.08 at 10:57 am }

unfortunately, i took my berry and then spent the next half hour chasing down the manager at la strada. by the time i started eating, the effects of the berry only lasted another 10 mins. i was able to eat lemons whole, the chocolate stout did taste like chocolate milk, guiness tasted like guiness but sweeter, and brussel sprouts tasted like parboiled sprouts which were nasty (they were suppose to be raw). by the time the second round of food came out, the berry had worn off so bologna sandwiches, cheese, cottage cheese, cheap tequila all tasted the way they usually do. eating lemons was fun though. usually just the thought of biting into a lemon makes me cringe.

i’m going to throw another party and try getting berries from another farmer. if you are interested in coming out to the next flavor tripping, subscribe to http://groups.yahoo.com/group/berryfairyhouston

5 neverfull { 07.26.08 at 11:19 am }

by the way, great photos. i think you caught the spirit of the event. hope you get better soon. you’ll be missed tonight.

6 food princess { 07.26.08 at 2:02 pm }

Great write-up and good pictures. feel better soon.

7 Misha { 07.26.08 at 3:56 pm }

I am mostly fine. I just didn’t want to take any chances with my reservations at Alinea tomorrow night, so I went kind of heavy on the Zicam.

8 neverfull { 07.26.08 at 4:37 pm }

let’s have a zicam flavor tripping party next. let’s see if it will make some of the best tasting foods like uni, fois gras, and truffles taste like crap. how many people do you think will show up?

9 Misha { 07.26.08 at 4:59 pm }

You’re making me sad. That’s why I am not going to Tenacity tonight. All that geouduck and uni goodness would be completely lost on me.

10 Richie { 07.26.08 at 6:46 pm }

Hey Misha

I didn’t attend last night so my comment is towards your Zicam usage. It may not have overly changed things but a few years back, I lost my sense of smell for four months thanks to Zicam – haven’t used it since


11 Misha { 07.27.08 at 11:32 pm }

Richie: yeah I am done with that stuff. Hope you at least got paid for your trouble. The settlement was something like $18M, I think. Get yours.

12 K { 07.28.08 at 3:28 pm }

One thing I learned from your pictures of the party is never to wear that shirt again. I look like a sausage casing. Oy.

Should I rub it in your face that my berry lasted for another couple of hours after I left the party? It would be tempered by the fact that I tried some cheddar cheese and some chowder (both of which I normally love) and they tasted like cat sick.

I blame the berries.

13 more miracle berries bollocks at Tasty Bits { 08.07.08 at 8:26 pm }

[…] people with superior palates and acerbic personalities are impervious to this miracle berry […]

14 Jill { 08.25.08 at 3:43 pm }

I bought Miracle Fruit from Miracle Fruit World
Great quality, better priced than elsewhere and some really good recipes! Try their Strudel:-) Sugar free Cocktails are great as well- I’ve hosted a party and the cocktails were (of course) a huge hit – 100% natural!

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