Wednesday, June 17, 2009

It's savory!

Today, one of the PhD students at work successfully graduated. In following what is allegedly the French tradition, we held a "pot de départ" - essentially a potluck-esque gathering with food and drink. One of my fellow research students thoughtfully eyed an ambiguous looking breaded pastry before eating it...

Andy: How is it?

The artsy one: It's savory.

Andy: Now that's a word I don't use everyday...

The mean one: I know! Me neither.

The weird one: Really? What's the opposite of sweet then?

Andy: Bland? ...Salty?

The weird one: Savory means salty. What do you think savory means?

Andy: Tasty?

The mean one: Yeah, that's what I thought too.

Andy: Hmm... two versus two. Let's ask the smart one.

The smart one: Ask me what?

Andy: What does savory mean?

The smart one: Uh... tasty and not sweet?

Andy: See! We said tasty, they said salty.

The smart one: Savory can be salty but it can also be other things.

The artsy one: Well we said "not sweet."

The smart one: Yeah, I don't think that's a good way at looking at it.

[Insert evil, satisfied laughter here]

/ˈseɪvəri/ [sey-vuh-ree]

1. pleasant or agreeable in taste or smell: a savory aroma.
2. piquant: a savory jelly.
3. pleasing, attractive, or agreeable.

4. British. an aromatic, often spicy course or dish served either as an appetizer or as a dessert, as pickled fish or brandied fruit.


Jerry said...

so if there is "the mean one", "the smart one" and "the weird one", then what are you?

Since you are part of their group it is only fitting that you get a name too...maybe "the savory one"...?

a_ndy said...

LOL! "The savory one"... that's pretty good. But probably, to be accurate I'd have to be "the stupid one" or "the slothful one." Besides, I already have a real nickname, like you, and it's Andy... not "the [insert adjective here] one."

eleasa said...

okay, this comment is rather late in coming, but i clicked across it from a more recent entry of yours.

i've come across this "savoury"/"savory" word in australia! it must be from a british origin. locals were very confounded with the fact that we in canada (or the USA i presume as well) don't have a word for the opposite of sweet! so they have a savory flavour of crackers & savory cakes for afternoon tea (aka afternoon snack) - which is a weird concept to me.

but the dichotomy of sweet & savoury now makes complete sense to me.