Monday, March 23, 2015
Go Tour The World In Howard County; The CA Starts Stamping Their World Food Passport
The CA has recruited a few dozen local restaurants to join a game that encourages you try new places. You pick up a free passport. You eat in participating restaurants. You get your passport stamped when you pay your bill.
Some people will win a raffled gift certificate. But I love the "World Food Passport" for encouraging folks to try something new -- an untried restaurant, a novel cuisine. The CA wants to expose people to new cultures and wants to drum up new business for restaurants. They reached out to all kinds of restaurants. You can see the ones who volunteered to donate a gift certificate and buy a passport stamp on the program's Web site.
There are great spots on the list. If it's mostly new to you, I would probably start with South Asian food. Most of the county's Indian restaurants have joined, and many of those are exceptional. But you could search HowChow for posts about many of the restaurants. Look in right column for the search bar or for the list of links by restaurant name.
Personally, I think the CA folks need help. I know how much effort Laura Smit and others put into the planning and outreach. But they have a handful of Asian restaurants -- and no Korean ones -- in a county full of great Asian food. Many restaurants have been hesitant about a novel idea. Laura has an advisory board helping on multicultural programs, and I'd love for her to get help from a HowChow reader with connections to Chinese, Thai or Korean restaurants. You can reach her at 410-715-3162 or International@ColumbiaAssociation.org.
Check out the CA Website for details and instructions on picking up your passport. You can get them at Columbia village centers and Howard County libraries, so they're convenient. I'm optimistic that more restaurants will join now that the program is real and diners will be coming around.