September 4th, 2009. 12PM.
This is it. The Best Ham In the World. I do feel like it changed my life, albeit slightly. Conversations about ham will never be the same again, because other people will praise the merits of Parma, or Iberico, or San Daniele, but I'll know that I had The Best. Of course, I don't have a lot of conversations about ham, so it won't be much of a problem. I should also say up front, "Thanks Chuck."
most recent USDA national data, I think).
Here's the key word: industrial. As a result of Jamonisimo, it has entered our vocabulary as a derogatory term for food. After we started eating and drinking, we all got more friendly - I think they were waiting to see if we'd be weird, but after several plates of ham we were buddies. And eventually we got around to asking the waiter what he thought of various hams. The best thing that's available in Japan is, I think, Prosciutto San Daniele, which is Italian but does come from the north and not too far from Spain. So, we said, as an Italian, what do you think of San Daniele. "Well," he said, "it's OK, but it's industrial. We don't really have a ham culture in Italy." Imagine that? An Italian says (paraphrasing) "Y'know, Italians really don't understand cured ham. That's why I came to Spain to work in this shop and study ham." Telling, damning, interesting, however you want to put it, we liked to hear it. Everyone likes to think they're clever.
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