Keeping it together, albeit with duct tape

Dear Feastlings,

I can’t be the only one. I’m rattled today, and I know other people must be too. My attention span has steadily diminished over the past few years, and already being a sufferer of misophonia, I’m felled. It’s my theoretical day off, which means for a restaurateur three trips to pick up odds and ends that we can’t get from our purveyors, plus cutting back the basil in my yard to bring it in for the catering that goes out within the hour and requires pesto despite the fact that our produce truck is about three hours behind schedule. And now? Now I can’t focus for the life of me.

My intent was to harvest the basil, and some fig leaves as well, for the wine dinner next Wednesday,

Trust your importer: Nossa Imports

(those fig leaf custards promise to be delicious,) and run out to a butcher shop for a couple of smoked pork hocks for some Old School collard greens for the same dinner, the hardware store for some shims for wobbly tables, and Crave to get some unroasted coffee beans for coffeed duck confit- again, for that same dinner.

Then I was going to swing by Feast, drop it all off, compose this quick email and be on my way. Instead, I arrived to a pantry cook who needed to run to the hospital to deal with some weird medication-related side effects, a couple of checks for wine orders on which I’ll need to take out a second mortgage, and a steady stream of chatter. Movies, music, a sister-in-law, jury duty, a paycheck question- whatever it all was, it’s kept me from concentrating until just now that the cacophony of conversation has finally stopped penetrating the office door from the kitchen, where everyone talks at alta voce over the thrum of exhaust fans and blenders, refrigerator compressors and uninspired music from uninspired radio stations. My addled little head is challenged.

But I told you that I’d get this out, and by golly, I’m getting it out. Besides that dinner a week from tonight, we’re also hosting our customary Saturday wine tasting,

Dealer’s Choice

and I believe there’s still space in the *second* benefit dinner we’re doing in conjunction with the Rogue Theatre in January, but you’ll have to check with them, as all the ticket sales go through them.

Standing room only

A worthy endeavor, though: it’s a seven-course version of Babette’s Feast, to honor the Rogue’s production of Isak Dinesen/Baroness Karen von Blixen-Finecke’s book of the same name, and to help them raise a little extra scratch for them, and, to be fair, for us. We’re still recovering from nearly three years of a rough go, as are they. If there’s anyone who’s felt the pandemic as acutely as restaurants have, it’s got to be performance venues of any stripe, and the Rogue Theatre makes Tucson special. Here’s your chance to help, and to live a gourmand’s lifestyle for one night.

It’s dear, obviously- it’s a benefit, and one with really high-end ingredients and expensive wines- so if it’s out of your budget, it’s out of your budget. It’s out of mine, but I’m hoping for some leftovers myself.

What’s perhaps more likely in your budget is our Christmas carryout menu, which will work very much like our Thanksgiving carryout menu did: you call in advance, significantly so if you want goose for Christmas, and we put together meals for you to pick up, with heating instructions, on the 24th. That way you can spend a little less of your holiday working and a little more with the people you love.

Christmas carryout at Feast

There’s more to come- I’m hard at work on a New Year’s Eve menu, and still scrambling to get the December menu together since is starts in a scant six days’ time, and there’ll undoubtedly be more: wine tastings and dinners, Valentine’s Day, and on, and on. We keep plugging along, even as our collective attention span gets smaller and smaller, like a balloon floating away, trailing a string behind it, just out of reach.

Your addled friend,


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