The Pleasures of the Table
“The pleasures of the table afford neither ravishing pleasure, ecstasy, nor transport, but it gains in intensity what it loses in duration. It is the more valuable because it exposes us to all other gratifications and even consoles us for their loss.
After a good dinner body and soul enjoy a peculiar happiness.
Physically, as the brain becomes refreshed, the face lightens up, the colors become heightened, and a glow spreads over the whole system.
Morally, the mind becomes sharpened, witticisms circulate. If La Farre and Saint Aulaire descend to posterity with the reputation of spiritual authors, they owe it especially to the fact that they were pleasant guests.
Besides, there are often found collected around the same table, all the modifications of society which extreme sociability has introduced among us: love, friendship, business, speculation, power, ambition, and intrigue, all enhance conviviality. Thus it is that it produces fruits of all imaginable flavors.”
– Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin, The Physiology of Taste, 1825