The Locavore Next Door: How to Speak & Eat Like a Local

By Carrie Robinson on December 01, 2012 from The Locavore Next Door via

Growing up there were culinary traditions and ways of doing things that I just took for granted.  It wasn’t until I moved away to a bigger city for a span of over 8 years that I truly realized that every place else does NOT do food the way that we locals do food.  There would be certain dishes and local flavors that were on my must-have list every time I came home to visit.  My parents knew that while I was in we had to make a trip to Muriales’s, or I would have to make a run to the local grocery store for peppers in sauce and Tomaro’s Italian bread before heading back up north.  I just couldn’t get those things in the city I was then calling home.
New to the area?  Want to blend in with the locals when talking food?  Then here are a few tips for you…
  • We don’t do subs here.  They are hoagies.
  • Speaking of hoagies, steak hoagies here come with Oliverio’s peppers and sauce.  Oh, and cheese.  Mozzarella cheese.
  • Pepperoni rolls rule here.  Homemade or bought from a local bakery.  They are our go-to for lunch, for snacks, for sporting events.  And nothing fancy.  Just pepperoni rolled up in a nice yeasty dough.  The pepperoni and the grease it renders as it bakes is where it’s at.
  • Fries come standard on a steak salad.  Period.  When I lived out of state, I used to order my steak salads with a side of fries.  You should have seen the look on the servers’ faces when I would take that side of fries and dump it all over top of my salad!
  • We call it pop here.  If you say soda, we automatically think you are talking about soda water.
  • We love our hot dogs.  There are two local camps here- T & L’s and Yann’s.  You may cross camps, but you most definitely prefer one over the other.  Not sure where you stand?  Make a trip to Fairmont to try a Yann dog.  But get there early.  He only sells a certain number per day and when they are gone, they are gone.  And he closes for the day whenever he sells out.
  • You need to know about the Giovanni.  You will see it on many menus at local restaurants here.  Hamburger, American cheese, Oliverio’s peppers and sauce on thick toast.  Some places serve it on an Italian bun.  But the original from the Canteen was on thick toast.  RIP, Canteen.  Can someone please bring back the Canteen?
Locals, did I miss anything?  Feel free to chime in at the Comments section below! 

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