Food for Thought: Are we pre-destined to eat what we eat?

I love the movie, “The Devil Wears Prada”.   I think Meryl Streep is amazing in the scene below.
It illustrates how the global fashion industry works and how key individuals can set off trends we see on the streets across the world.  Big ideas come from key influencers and trickle down.  It seems that ideas don’t sprout up from local communities and spread around the world.  A designer may make pilgrimages to various corners of the world to draw inspiration but they end up selling their locally inspired clothes and start another trickle down trend.
That got me thinking if the food industry works the same way.  Am I destined to eat an entrée pre-picked by a small circle esteemed culinary experts?
Is this how angus beef shows up in burgers at McDonalds just like haute culture cerulean blue shows up at The Gap?
Are these Top 10 global restaurants and their Haute Cuisine Designers dictating what I will be eating at Vancouver restaurants in the next few years?
1) Noma
(Copenhagen, Denmark)
2) El Celler de Can Roca
(Girona, Spain)
3) Mugaritz
(San Sebastian, Spain)
4) D.O.M
(Sao Paulo, Brazil)
5) Osteria Francescana
(Modena, Italy)
6) Per Se
(New York, USA)
7) Alinea
(Chicago, USA)
8) Arzak
(San Sebastian, Spain)
9) Dinner By Heston Blumenthal
(London, England)
10) Eleven Madison Park
(New York, USA)
Is Vancouver a culinary city that just follows or does it have it own unique twist on food that other parts of the world can take note of?
I hope that food isn’t a top down global endeavor like the fashion industry but more a bottom up movement.  Vancouver has great chefs with access to fresh local ingredients, so creating a distinctly Vancouver meals in theory should not be difficult.
However trends from other parts of the world have stuck in our city. Gourmet donuts are courtesy of Portland and crab covered in salted egg yolks was prevalent in Asia for a few years before arriving in YVR.  I am also certain the ubiquitous pull pork and macrons we are now seeing everywhere didn’t have their start our fair city.
Oddly, the only unique thing I can think of about Vancity is the plethora of mid range chain restaurants (Earls and Cactus Club) that populate our region.
The foods trends that are distinct to our city and the foreign movements that settle in and find a home here speak volumes of the overall palate Vancouverites have.
I guess in the end it doesn’t matters as long as the food being served is executed well. But I couldn’t help but wonder if the Brussels sprouts with Pancetta or Bacon that was the rage last winter here, was the “it” side dish in New York way before arriving in Vancouver.
If Vancouver is more a follower than a leader, and if I am destined to eat something that is being created in another city as we speak then where are the delicious Salt Pepper Soft Shell Crabs I had in Las Vegas in 2009?

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