Foodie or Not Foodie?

Sure you love good food, cooking, and restaurants, but how do you feel about being called the f-word? Is the term foodie really so bad?

Some think it is. In a post on her blog, Gluten-Free Girl, Shauna James Ahern takes issue with the moniker:

[T]here’s something about the word foodie that sounds like it should be said with a nasal accent, an upper-crust sound, chin raised, eyes partially closed. It sounds, to me, like ‘Oh yes, I’m one of those people who knows exactly where to buy the best olive oil. All the rest are so declasse.’

The word foodie sounds like snobbery to me.

More than one commenter agrees with Shauna. “The term ‘foodie’ makes my toes curl. The snobbish-ness it conveys, the stuffy, overbearing nature of it… Uuurgh,” writes one reader. Another claims, “The word foodie to me suggests somebody who would turn up their nose at food they are offered because it’s not gourmet enough for them,” and yet another says, ”’Foodie’ attempts to create some kind of mystery where, really, there isn’t one.”

There are a few who don’t mind it. One reader explains, “I have never thought of the word ‘foodie’ as snooty, static or any of the other negative things you mention. I think it’s actually a very goofy-sounding term, one that evokes laughter from many of my friends,” but that is clearly a minority opinion.

Whether you like being called a foodie or not, what are the better options? As Shauna explains, “I’m also not fond of gourmand, gourmet, gavonne, connoisseur, saveur, or person-in-the-know.” There’s got to be some better term out there. Is foodie really the best we can do?

It reminds me of my grandfather, who liked to say, “You can call me whatever you want to, just don’t call me late for dinner.” He was clearly a foodie long before his time.