This is year 2000 and the place is Victoria island off Vancouver in Canada.
Why am I writing this now in 2008? because we were talking about this and was reminded of it! This was one of our usual travels and after a couple of days in Vancouver decided to travel to Victoria island , which is a little walk everywhere type of holiday island.
We spent the day wandering around and checking out lovely sites like the Buchsard gardens etc. Then it was dinner time. walked through each and every street of restaurants, as one would (at least the ones like me...) checking out the menu card posted looking for vegetarian options. As usual it was a case of ,I am going to get soooo hungry that I will settle for the good old spaghetti in tomato sauce , then I pass through this 'Turkish ' place where the chef was having a smoko break. He probably though I was Egyptian (the customs officer in Egypt did so why not him) and was offended when I just passed a cursory glance and kept walking. He stopped me and asked what I was after. I told him, I am vegetarian, and also for a good measure added
Me : Guess its hard to find vegetarian options in Turkish food, as most of their stuff had meat, and also I am not really in the mood for spaghetti with tomato sauce as a vegetarian option (this is what a lot of places I had been checking had offered)
He was now truly offended that I had shown no faith in his cooking ability.
Chef: We cook lots of natural and pure vegetarian food with no added ingredients We don't even need salt or pepper as we ensure we add the right combination of vegies to make it possible'
Me: Ok, so what do you suggest?
Chef: Come back in 15 mins (i would have finished my break) and I will make you a lovely meal
Me: Done, we will be back soon, who do I ask for?
Chef Me, My name is Moses.
In 20 mins time, I go back there and peep in to see if I can spot Moses' No luck, but a smart young waiter is around. I ask, is Moses here? The waiter goes inside to check. Out comes Moses
Me: Hi, we are back so can you still make us something nice?
Moses : Of course, I will give you a lentil pilaf, a mixed vegetable turlu and something for later
Me: That would be great, anyway I love the middle-eastern desserts, and will order that later.
Moses goes away and in another 20 mins arrives this meal. The lentil pilaf is out of the world. It is smells and tastes heavenly and so does the vegetable turlu, which ash very subtle tastes and the vegies are crisp but cooked. One of the best meals ever I have had in my life, this coming from someone whose mom is a cordon bleue chef!
Good on you MOSES hope to see you again at some stage.