[Episode 100] The Meta of Food – All About Food Besides Eating It!

Jason is back on the podcast for one last, final episode! Yes, Thoughts on the Table ends today as it hits its 100th episode with the biggest topic we could think of: the meta of food, i.e. anything that has to do with food besides the physical sensations of actually eating it. Join us in our journey through this fascinating subject as we touch on the concept of authenticity and on how culture influences our appreciation of flavor.

Conversely, in the second part of the episode, Jason and I discuss some cooking trends that affect the flavor of food. These include the tendency to finish cooking pasta in its sauce and to alter traditional recipes to make them visually pleasing for sharing on social media, more so than with our guests!

Special Thanks

I’d like to thank all of you who have been listening and the 65 amazing guests that I had the pleasure of interviewing and collaborating with. I’d like to make a special mention to those who have bought into the project and really helped drive it, starting with Jason, and including Gino De Blasio, Manu, Frank Fariello, Diana Zahuranec, Raffaella De Amici, Rick Zullo, David Scott Allen, Nick Zingale, Mark Preston, Simon Pagotto, Melinda King, Tina Prestia, Sim Salis, Eva, Diana Pinto – who also contributed to this last episode with her precious research and insight.

Episode References



  • Marcella Cucina, by Marcella Hazan, William Morrow Cookbooks, 1997
  • Millericette, by Erina Gavotti, A.Vallardi, 1995
  • Mangiare e Bere all’Italiana, by Luigi Carnacina and Luigi Veronelli, Garzanti, 1962
  • Recipes and Memories, by Sophia Loren, GT Publishing Corporation, 2000
  • Le Quattro Stagioni in Cucina, by Lisa Biondi, AMZ Editrice, 1981
Paolo Rigiroli

Author: Paolo Rigiroli

Now based in the UK, Paolo is an Italian who lived in Canada for nearly 18 years and blogs about Italian food and its many aberrations.

2 thoughts on “[Episode 100] The Meta of Food – All About Food Besides Eating It!”

  1. Last episode! Mannaggia! Luckily I still have a few to catch up on, but we’ll miss you. Will you still do blog posts? Interesting post-i didn’t agree with everything as I’m not as forgiving as you, but enjoyed listening. I don’t think that what is in cookbooks necessarily what to go by for food traditions, since traditionally the people doing the cooking didn’t use them- probably couldn’t read them and didn’t write them.
    My mamma has always used pasta cooking water to…I can’t remember what you called it…mantecare? Only in specific dishes or when the sauce is drying out-rarely in tomato sauces. We even have a name for the pasta cooking water in our dialetto. it is called la jotte (pronounced YOT.teh). Cool, huh?
    We will have to get together if you ever come back to Vancouver! Ciao, Cristina

  2. Happy 100th podcast!!! Really enjoyed this, it was interesting to hear your take on “authenticity”…
    Hopefully we can try some of those restaurants or supper clubs in London soon!

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