My own cultural heritage leans pretty hard into what I’ve lately been doing my level best to believe on a personal level: that in the face of adversity on a biblical scale, we still luck out. That said, I seldom accomplish feeling lucky, even in the best of times, let alone during a plague of, well, biblical proportions. And it’s a whole different email to examine how my people are able to celebrate and bemoan our fate simultaneously at any given moment, but we do. It’s a culture capable of seeing brilliant glimmers of good fortune in the midst of the most abject pain and misery, and at the same time of seeing the cloud behind every silver lining.
I bring this all up because even though this particular plague didn’t pass anyone over that I know of, I’m posting a menu of Passover dishes to honor one that by all accounts did, though you need to take into account who wrote it, as I’m sure any Pharaoh would regard plagues and frogs and locusts and boils and the smiting of first-borns as at least as rough of a go as we’re having now. That said, tragedy plus distance is comedy, or at least tolerability, and I’m hoping we’re all far enough away from that particular plague that we can enjoy a bowl of matzo ball soup without feeling like a jerk about it.
So here’s that menu,
which, in spite of restaurants and bars now being allowed to seat at full capacity in Arizona as of late this morning,
will be takeout-only. Why? Maybe listen to the story on the same page that talks about how the number of new cases in Arizona today is double yesterday’s total. I’m no epidemiologist, but evidently neither is Doug Ducey.
So here I am, finding the aforementioned cloud. I’m already looking forward to the arguments that will ensue, both in person and by email. We’re a sarcastic people, as well.
I will say, however, that there’s more news today that does- truly- have me feeling lucky: a four-month hold has been placed on the 25% wine tariffs that but a huge dent in wine enjoyability for the end consumer, and in job security for thousands and thousands of people in the wine industry, so here’s a little something about that:
This should be good news for even longer than four months, because at least those importers who still have any money left after the brutal one-two, tariff-covid punch can buy up wines that will go out to distributors, restaurants and wine shops until the product runs out. So fingers crossed that they can do some shopping, enough to cover us until we the government arrives, with any more luck, at an agreement that no longer hikes the prices of wine, Scotch, cheeses and olive oils.
But now, on to more immediate business. There’s still a wine tasting tomorrow, via Zoom, to which you’re invited,
and there are still philanthropic endeavors that we’re a part of, and that we welcome you to be a part of as well, if you so choose, both this one
and this one
and there’ll be more in the future, which you’ll hear about as they get closer. There’ll be an Easter menu as well, but even though it’s early this year, it still comes in April, so we’ll be posting that menu in chronological deference to Passover. But keep your eyes peeled.
Also, I know that for some of you, this doesn’t deserve footnote status, but I’m only just now opening up the door on this one. We’ll start accepting orders for corned beef and cabbage on the CBC Futures Exchange. the bad news is that although we increase the number of orders we prepare every single year, we still don’t seem to be able to keep up with the rate at which people discover that house-corned beef, without nitrates or saltpeter, brown or not, is delicious. So when we run out, we run out; I just hope that doesn’t happen until the 17th, because I’m already dreading the barrage of angry calls and emails. But hey- that’s just my cultural heritage.