I still remember the very first time I had Korean food. I was 18 years old, and visiting my dad at work. He suggested Korean, I said sure (?), and we headed down the street to what I’m assuming was the only Korean restaurant in Downtown Miami. I remember them bringing out the little plates of what I now know are called banchan, and my dad telling me I had to try this stuff called kimchee. “It’s the worst tasting thing you’ll ever eat. And really spicy.” “Well, if it tastes so terrible why would I want to eat it?” “That’s the thing, son. It’s so bad, that eventually you’ll start to like it.” I took one bite, and as promised it was pretty bad… but sure enough, 10 minutes later I was like “hmmm, maybe I’ll try another bite of that weird cabbage stuff”. I was hooked.
The other thing I remember about that meal is what my Dad ate for lunch that day- and this is truly amazing because I have the worst memory of all time (although it’s not suprising that this is the shit I remember.) It was a large bowl of noodles topped with this thick brown sauce, with onions and little cubes of meat. It was delicious. And for almost 10 years I never saw the dish again, and pretty much forgot about it entirely.