Well, Thanksgiving has come and gone. Family dynamics aside, how did it go for you, culinarily speaking? Continue reading Knife Fight
I know – you’re wondering if I’m really getting ready to school you on how to order food at a restaurant. This is a task nearly everyone does dozens (if not hundreds) of times a year. There’s no one special trick that will vault you over other diners to an extra level of respect from a restaurant’s staff, but I can offer a few pointers that might get you a higher standard of service when you’re dining out. Continue reading Order Like a Pro
September 19 was “Talk Like a Pirate Day” – one of those internet-created faux holidays everyone loves to talk about on social media and at the water cooler. (Do people in offices really gather around a water cooler anymore? I picture them alone at their desks hunched over their $5 pumpkin-spiced Life Water, scrolling through Instagram on their phones.)
Having worked in restaurants for many years, I can usually spot a line cook in the wild at 40 paces or less, even if they’ve eschewed their every day uniform for civvies. Continue reading Talk Like a Line Cook Day
I am, in modern parlance, “an old,” so I remember the unsettling scene from 1976’s “The Marathon Man” in which a Nazi war criminal, played by Laurence Olivier, repeatedly asks Dustin Hoffman “Is it safe?” while laying out dental instruments with which to torture him with. Hoffman – terrified, sweating, strapped to a chair – replies “Yes, it’s safe, it’s very safe, it’s so safe you wouldn’t believe it.” Whenever I see the blue polo shirt of a Metro Health Department inspector slip into my place of employment, my brain coughs up this scene. Continue reading Is it Safe?
It’s tempting, isn’t it? You’re out with a bunch of friends, or maybe with a date. A server leads you to a table; menus open. You can’t resist. You lean in and speak the magic sentence: “I know the chef.” In your imagination, this will be met with surprised, quiet gasps of pleasure. Don’t chance it. At this stage of the game, it’s a crap shoot, and so many things could go awry, it’s not worth that one moment of smug satisfaction. Continue reading I Know the Chef
A few weeks back, someone I worked with briefly at another restaurant opened a restaurant of his own, with partners. They’d renovated and re-fitted an empty restaurant which had been a neighborhood institution years ago. Continue reading Love, War and Restaurant Openings