"Skin me a peach, save the fuzz for my pillow…"

by Katie Pizzuto on December 15, 2008

in Cooking,Dining

fd004554To completely experience a meal, one must engage all five of the senses. When you step into the kitchen, you can hear the sizzle of onions hitting a pan with olive oil; you can smell the veal shanks that have been slowly roasting in the oven for the last three hours; you are tantalized by the sight of beautifully shaped asparagus spears with shavings of parmigiano on them; you can feel the juicy, fibrous mango that dribbles its juices down your chin; and you can taste every last morsel and drop that passes through your lips. The only other human experience that a great meal can truly compare to is sex, for it is one of the few experiences (if not the only other) that engages ALL 5 of the senses…perhaps that is why we have an “appetite” for it.

Josephine Bonaparte carried a violet-scented cachet because she fully believed in the aphrodisiac power of that aroma. The emperor Montezuma drank cup after cup of hot chocolate on a daily basis, also because he believed it to be an aphrodisiac. Hell, even a simple glass or two of wine breeds a penchant for stripping off layers of clothing! Depending on the culture, anything from shark fins to bull’s testicles is claimed to be the ultimate food for inciting carnal love and piquing libidos. But my point here is not to run a litany of gastronomic aphrodisiacs that may or may not be based in any legitimate scientific proof. Instead, I offer up the idea that perhaps it is our approach to food and wine that can inspire and awaken the amorous being in each of us.

Food, much like eroticism, begins with the eyes. Both entice us through appearance, inviting us to indulge. Taste and smell follow right behind, inseparably. The perfume of exquisite cooking can not only make us salivate, but it can also stir our desires. Scent, in fact, is so linked to sensuality, that in many languages the word “kiss” means “smell.” Likewise, the flavor of dark chocolate lingering in the recesses of our mouth is as alluring as the subtle taste of our lover’s skin.

Then, of course, there is what we hear. It may just as easily be the sound of a lover whispering in our ear, or the sound of a champagne cork being popped, and the gurgle of the bubbles hitting the glass. In the same moment, we can take notice of both the clink of silverware on a plate, and the soft murmur and tones of idle conversation carried over those very plates.

Lastly there is touch: the sensation of kneading bread with the entire weight of your body, or the curve of an egg coddled in the cup of your hand all induce a deep pleasure that commences in the core of our being. That sensation, not to be trivialized, is as primal as the caress that entangles two people. So whether it is an oyster slipping from its shell to your mouth, or someone engaging you in a kiss, the sensuality of food is what makes it a turn on, not its chemical properties. Once an amazing meal has been prepared, served and eaten, once the warmth of the wine and spices are pulsing in your blood, and once the anticipation of a kiss enters your soul, only then will you know that anything has the potential and capacity to become an aphrodisiac.

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Ron Washam, HMW December 15, 2008

Katie,

I often think of sex in food terms too. I’m much older than you, so I think of intercourse as the equivalent of feeding an oyster into a slot machine. In my case, a Kumamoto oyster.

I often wonder if I entered the food and wine business because it does speak to me on a primitive, sensual level. Is there anything more intimate than putting things in your mouth, be it Romanee-Conti, foie gras, your lover, or Dentu-Grip?

We know we are alive when all five senses function at once. Your lovely little piece here makes me grateful to be alive.

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2 Linsey December 15, 2008

Few years ago i decided to be extremely devilish and create a chocolate mousse extreme – damn i pushed the boat out

homemade white chocolate mousse and dark chocolate mousse layered with chocolate cake soaked in freshly squeezed orange and segmented orange sitting on a thin layer of chocolate sauce

made to be eaten slowly and enjoyed – damn that hit so many senses it was incredible – sometimes orgasmic totally belongs with food

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3 Yvette December 15, 2008

i think i need a cigarette

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4 Linsey December 15, 2008

after that i could probably use one too – and i dont smoke!!

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5 Katie Pizzuto December 15, 2008

Linsey, that sounds HEAVENLY…I love chocolate/orange combinations. And there have been many a time when I’ve savored something ever so slowly, be it wine or food, and called it the equivalent of an “oral orgasm.” Simply no other way to put it.

Ron, I think that by the time I can afford to enjoy a bottle of DRC I will undoubtedly be using the Dentu-Grip, but I can’t fathom a more sensual wine than the one made by the most sensual grape, in the most sensual region.

Yvette, when did you start smoking? 😉

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6 Ron Washam, HMW December 15, 2008

Oh, it’s sensual alright. The last DRC I tasted, a ’62 La Tache, I drank through a pair of silk panties. Kind of ticked off the Victoria’s Secret saleswoman, but, hey, I offered to take them off first.

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7 Katie Pizzuto December 16, 2008

Ron, I’m not sure who to be more jealous of: you, for having had a ’62 La Tache, or the saleswoman. LOL!

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8 Ron Washam, HMW December 16, 2008

Oh, be jealous of me–no one ever is.

Some folks like decanting, I like depantying.

Katie, your blog is my absolute favorite! You must certainly be as beautiful as your prose.

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9 Yvette December 17, 2008

I don’t smoke, but after this blog, I feel the need!!xoxox

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