Years ago I had a sushi bar which I went to with business associates who spoke fluent Japanese. The employees at the restaurant spoke little English. On of my favorite dishes was a squid dish, sort of like little slices with a zingy sauce. One day I was in the area and decided to try the place myself. First thing I planned on getting was that dish, which I thought was either called pickled or marinated squid. Feeling sure of myself I ordered thew marinated squid. The waitress, in her few words of english, said "are you sure?" I said yes. A couple minutes later the manager came over to ask me the same question. I said "of course, I’ve had it several times and it’s really good." A few minutes later the waitress brought out a dish for me. I knew then that I had the name wrong, but figured it would still be ok. It looked like sliced squid in yellowish mayonnaise. After two tastes, I asked the manager what it was. I was told, "they take the insides out of the squid, whip them up until they are creamy, and use it as the sauce". I said I would gladly pay for the dish—–but they could remove it from my presence now. I did learn on that one!
Sundancer’s post regarding "Philadelphia Gravy" brought to mind some surprises when I misinterpreted the menu.
In the North Carolina mountains, we referred to the root portion of turnips as "turnips", and the above ground part as "turnip greens". I dearly love both with a good slab of corn bread, pinto beans and some skilet fried potatoes. I was overjoyed when we went into a restaurant in Mississippi and saw "turnips" on the menu. The waitress delivered the "greens" part with my meal and when I asked where my turnips were, she informed me that that serving of greens is what they call turnips in Mississippi. It seems that they call the below ground part "turnip roots" and the above ground part "turnips".
Have you guys had any similar surprises in your travels?
“That’s not what I ordered”
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