I long to be a flounder.

Dear Feastlings,

I don’t want to be the person that I often feel I am. Sitting down to the keyboard week after week to let you all know what’s going on at Feast, I feel like I need to soft-pedal my lamentations, because I feel like, for a good four years now, the majority of my emails have been screeds of discontent. We all know that person- the one you’re afraid to ask how they’re doing because they’ll tell you in excruciating detail- and I, far too often, am that person.

So I do my best to rein it in, of late. I had a conversation with a guest in which I pledged to be more like a flounder, because they’re always looking up, and I try more and more to live the flounder lifestyle. Today is no different, and I’m really not all that broken up about it, because the season is drawing to a close, and while it puts everyone over a barrel for a short time, it’s nothing worse than we’ve been weathering for the past few years anyhow.

I mention it today not to fish for sympathy, and not because I’m returning to the gloom-and-doom state I lived in throughout the pandemic and its aftermath, but because I feel these little missives are a way to keep you all abreast of what’s going on at Feast, and also what’s REALLY going on at Feast. So today isn’t about the fact that someone quit by text 45 minutes before his shift started, so much as it’s about the fact that more and more of you come in perhaps misled. I’m sleeping a little easier these days, not because Feast is going as smoothly as I’d like it to, but because it’s closer to going as smoothly as I’d like than it’s been since 2020. A great many of you come in and say you’ve noticed that the emails have a more carefree tone to them, and they do. Because I am. More carefree, I mean.

But then come the questions: “So, are you opening on Sundays soon? Are you going to be staying open later soon? It seems like it’s all going so well now.” And here’s the answer. It’s different now- most decidedly improving- but it’s not different enough to go back to how things were. I felt bad about it for a long time, like we were dragging our feet, but as I look around at other restaurants- other businesses of any stripe, really- I see they’re not back either. Our friends down the street at Tito and Pep, in our former location, still haven’t returned to lunch service. My bank, which used to have branches open on Saturdays, will likely never go back to it. Purveyors that used to deliver to us six days a week now offer us five at best, and some only two or three.

I actually feel for the person who quit by text less than an hour before his shift- like me, like all of us, really, I think he’s more fragile than he once was, and I’m grateful that some of the crew have bounced back from their fragile state, but I’m sighing a little sigh for those who haven’t, and wishing them well. Those of us who interface with all of you would likely agree that we feel great fortune in the kind wishes of our guests. You’ve all strengthened us with your sympathies and kindness, so I’m hoping he recovers as well. That said, it’s another little hitch in plans to return to what we think of as less and less now as normal hours. We’ll continue to work toward it, but in the meantime, we still have yet to stabilize enough to do what we were doing five years ago.

We will, on the other hand, continue to do what we’re able to do. This week, as we have for ages now, we’ll have our Saturday wine tasting at 2 pm,

Vinos de España

and tomorrow, as we have for ages now, we’ll donate 20% of restaurant sales to the Southern Arizona Center Against Sexual Assault for Dine Out for Safety,

Dine Out for Safety

so if you want to do a little good for the community while doing a little something nice for yourself, we’d encourage you to join us or any of the other twenty-something participating restaurants in town and treating yourself while helping out people who could most decidedly use our help.

And eventually, we’ll get back to having the staff we want and need to give you what you want and need, and until that time, we’ll continue to thank you for helping us get there.


Doug and the people of Feast

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