January: In an attempt to choose a catchy title for my column about the closing of Lynn’s, I found that each of the fantastic puns I came up with had already been used elsewhere. Note to self: Don’t ever try to fit the word “cornbread” into a Lady Gaga lyric again.
February: Last February, I rambled a bit about the European horsemeat controversy. Probably tasty, blah blah blah, should be disclosed, etc., some dithering about foie gras, since I love to eat that so much. All of this culminated in a voicemail at work from the No. 2 man in the national Humane Society — very polite, asking me to call him back to discuss some of the statements I’d made. I nervously returned his call and was THRILLED when he didn’t answer the phone. Then I ate a foie gras and apricot jam sandwich on sourdough toast and forgot about it until just now.
March: In March, I wrote about an Internet list that was making the rounds — a list of undeniable facts about being a chef. One of the points on the list was “you are never irreplaceable,” and another was “you will fall in love with your job and never look back.” Well, I knew I wasn’t irreplaceable, and I also knew I wasn’t in love with my (kitchen) job. So … within two weeks, I didn’t work there anymore. I’m still leaping that leap of faith.
April: De rigueur Derby column, of course. Make your Oaks night reservations as far in advance as you can. Eat anywhere you like Derby night; many Derby-night reservations are a no-show and you can take advantage of this. Back-up plan: Have a hearty pasta dish and a salad ready to go in the fridge for when you get home from the track. Just in case.
May: A spirited recap of the Amy’s Baking Company kerfuffle, wherein I reminded readers to be as polite and discreet in their Internet business dealings as possible, lest one gain a poor reputation. Ahem.
June: A takedown of a rudely self-entitled Dunkin Donuts customer who actually recorded her own despicable behavior and offered it to the Internet herself. Also: A plea for diners to treat cashiers and servers like people and not servants or slaves.
July: I covered Flack-Gate, the WAVE-3 Troubleshooter’s hard-hitting stories about local food trucks and how the Health Department views them. I was crushed when my newly minted verb “Metro-‘splained” was edited out.
August: In August, I penned a missive about how Louisville suddenly seems to be the darling of “Best” restaurant and bar lists in national and international publications, and also TV-worthy (Damaris Phillips’ new show on the Food Network, “Restaurant Impossible” at Coach Lamp, Grind Gourmet Burger truck on the Cooking Channel’s “Eat Street” — to name a few). You should look into a sofa bed for your guest bedroom. Your out-of-town family will start making inquiries about visiting soon.
September: I offered my annual rant about fall flavors exploding all over every plate and in every glass at restaurants and bars in Louisville. If I am ever found dead, with mysterious bruising all over my body, somebody needs to look closely at the butternut-squash lobbyists. These ruthless gourd pushers will stop at nothing to get their way. Telltale clue: cinnamon sticks left behind at the scene of the crime.
October: In October, I wrote about the difference between a pretty food photo on the Internet and the reality of reproducing that dish in a restaurant setting — and why you shouldn’t necessarily root for that. As Julia Child once said: “It’s so beautifully arranged on the plate … you know someone’s fingers have been all over it.”
November: Last month I wondered aloud: How long is too long to wait for a table? I don’t think I solved much, except I settled on the idea that the wait is directly proportionate to how much you want to eat wherever “there” is. The big takeaway: Every dinner in this town does not need to be eaten between 6:30 and 7:30. Creep around the outside of that box. Take a disco nap and make your reservation for 8:30 p.m. The food is better (cooks are at the top of their game), the service is better (servers are less busy and more able to concentrate on your party), and you will be so hungry you’ll appreciate everything that much more.
Marsha Lynch has worked at many Louisville independent restaurants.