Monday, August 30, 2010
Fried Clams and Pine Mouth
So we have a big food confession : we LOVE LOVE LOVE fried clams.
The little nuggets of deep fried funky bellies and chewy necks rise a craving in the two of us that leads to adventures off the beaten track in search of places that serve the best, the most, the lauded. We understand how people find these little guys disgusting and gross--they are deep fried sacks of full of seafood funk with some kind of chewy bit attached. But we'll drive miles and pay excruciating prices just to satisfy our craving.
We were utterly psyched on a recent visit to the Cape to discover that there were a wealth of fried seafood joints that had "The Best of..." attached to themselves. Unfortunately three days before we were to make our pilgrimage to try the best clams the Cape had to offer sudden tragedy struck Luke - he had gotten (came down with??) the DREADED PINE MOUTH!
PINE MOUTH???? You might be asking yourself "what is this ridiculous thing??" Let us relate Luke's experience.... One Friday morning Luke woke up and realized that anything he ate tasted so horribly bitter and terrible that he couldn't complete eating it. Thinking that maybe he had just had one to many Campari and grapefruits the night before, he went about his day. Saturday morning he woke up with the same taste in his mouth and fearing that his palette would be a barren bitter wasteland forever (gasp!). And so he consulted the most knowledgable thing he knew: Google. After entering "bitter mouth" into the search engine he came to realize that he had come down with the infliction known as pine mouth. This strange condition was some reaction to pine nuts from China that seemed to happen at random to many people across the globe (listen to the story at npr http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2010/07/02/128273771/pinenuts-may-be-to-blame-for-that-bitter-atertaste ). Realizing that he had consumed pine nuts in the past few days he was one of the unlucky people to be inflicted with the random curse of PINE MOUTH ( and then continued to say it a lot. It's kind of fun to say ....pine mouth )------> Go ahead, SAY IT!!
With high hopes the pine mouth would subside right in time for the fried clam feast we stopped at the place said to have some of the best clams on our way to Provincetown : Kreme n' Cone. Weird name, we know...but boy did they deliver! The morsels were plump, lightly coated in batter and tasted fresh as ever. Although Michele felt absolutely horrible for Luke given that eating fried clams are a passion they share: she got twice as many when Luke realized the pine mouth ruined the delectable flavor. With an average cost of $20/pint there was NO WAY even one would be wasted. (and of course we didn't order less than a pint even knowing Luke may not be able to eat them)!
I'm not sure where/when in life we both acquired such high standards for fried clams..but we have yet to taste THE BEST. The search continues and probably will not end anytime soon.
Here are a list of where to find some of the most memorable fried treats to date ... please feel free to share any suggestions as we know there are plenty of other regions we have yet to explore!
Carrie's Restaurant- Providence R.I
Flo's Clamshack- Newport R.I
Horton's - East Providence R.I
Kreme n' Cone- West Dennis M.A
The Clam Shack- Kennebunkport M.E
Monahan's - Narragansett R.I