Presidents are not, generally, noted for what they eat. President Bush is, so far as I can recall, associated with exactly one pretzel, lodged in the presidential throat; President Clinton was known to have a weakness for junk food, but never from anywhere distinguished enough that he made it nationally famous; Bush senior ate pork rinds and disdained broccoli, although it later turned out he didn't and that was just his advisers trying to make him look average-joeish ("Pork rinds, can't get enough, ate 'em all the time in Skull & Bones"). Before that--hard to imagine Nixon, Eisenhower, Hoover as anything but steak and potato guys, though Taft looked like a guy who could down two dozen oysters as prelude to a rack of lamb. And, of course, Martin Van Buren made a mean huevos rancheros.
But then there's Barack Obama, who is rapidly becoming the Calvin Trillin of presidents, to judge by his alleged love for various local Chicago joints, often obscure. (This despite the fact that he has the physique of a tofu-eatin' sprouts-lover.) His Hyde Park home is supposed to have a 1000-bottle wine cellar (no reports on how full it is), and his globetrotting childhood could make a Travel Channel show, since he admits in Dreams From My Father to having eaten dog, snake and grasshoppers as a boy in Indonesia. (Where was the attack ad on that one? "Barack Obama says he wants a dog for his family... but is it to play catch with, or to braise in a burgundy cream sauce?") He can pronounce "arugula," and "nuclear" so it doesn't rhyme with it. Forget the race barrier... have we elected our first foodie president?