Handshaking, babykissing, and everything but cooking.

Dear Feastlings,

I know I’ve carried on in one email or another about what it’s like to run a restaurant, and that usually it sounds like complaining. So I’ll tread lightly- this isn’t a complaint, but let’s think of it as another peek behind the restaurant curtain. Television and movies have so glamorized my industry that people have for years thought that my days are spent fanning the vapor of simmering stocks into my waiting nostrils, arranging microgreens with tweezers, and adjusting the seasoning of expensive sauces. Let me disabuse you of this notion.

There’s the frantic texting and phone calling, fixing ordering difficulties, swapping out the mistaken product that’s come in instead of the ingredient we need (I said fennel, not micro fennel!) there’s the last-minute schedule changes when someone’s taken an unforeseen trip to urgent care, and on and on. Yesterday, and again today, were spent attempting to smooth things over with a guest who accused me of creating a cult in which servers were encouraged to hate our guests- I believe he suggested it was possibly mandatory. I envy the restaurateur who doesn’t care. I’d really love to be able to say to myself that I’m dealing with a crackpot and write it off, not replying, not engaging, and not caring. I’m sure I could- it’s one person. But I’m that guy, the one who’s so worried about the principle of nearly everything, that he’ll spend hours on an issue that another restaurant person would let roll of his or her back without a second thought.

So that’s been what I’ve been up to, and tonight, new menu night,


I’ll be running around the kitchen making sure the new dishes are being executed correctly, and then running around the dining room making sure everyone’s happy with them, and then I’ll set to work on the behind-the-scenes logistics of this Saturday’s wine tasting, which I can’t provide a link to since none of that behind-the-scenes work’s been done yet. With any luck, I’ll have that for you all tomorrow. Instead, for now, I’ll hope you’re happy with the August menu, and I’ll attempt a small distraction with a glimpse of the Ferragosto menu


and by tomorrow, the new guy will show up for his stage, with any luck, and I’ll have the Saturday wine tasting squared away, and we’ll just move on with all of it. And just as I’ve convinced you that I’m not flitting about the kitchen tasting sauces, I’ll have convinced any remaining doubters that I’m not operating a cult of hate. Wish me luck.

Thanks, everyone.


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