But alas, a visit was not really in the cards for us. The signs were all there: new menus had to be designed and printed, new prep and par lists, orders had to be placed with vendors, items in the refrigerator had to be consolidated, screen printers and artists had to be contacted regarding forthcoming LRBC t-shirts, equipment warranties had to be honored, April's schedule had to be written, and re-written, a pesto aioli recipe for the new turkey special had to be created, bank deposits had to be made, we would have to return to Portland early on Tuesday for dentist appointments we already had to reschedule once (which are also like a year over-due), and we still had to pick up some thread lock for the guard plate to the meat slicer (ahh yes, the joys of being a small business owner.) Did I mention this was our day-off? When people ask us why we aren't open seven days a week, this is why. The Jews got it right when they decided to create that whole "day of rest" thing. Want to hear about what's in store for Tuesday?
Despite these seemingly insurmountable odds we continued to keep a trip down to the Oregon Coast in our sights. However, unknown powerful forces had other plans...
So this whole thermostat/furnace and dishwasher repair threw us for a loop and Evan confirmed this was just one trip that was meant to happen at a future time. He informed me of this as he was at Hankin's Hardware picking up the thread lock, and sadly remarked, "But can we still have a Beach Day?" Which I supposed was his way of asking if we could still fill our day with delights in both the culinary, and good ole fashioned soul nurturing kind of way that flows through our veins so naturally when we're on the Coast.
At first I wasn't sure it was possible. A Beach Day in a drizzly, too-cold-for-this-goddamn-time-of-year, all-too-regular, habitually inclined to work environment? No. I wanted potato chowder and beach glass. Evan asked if I would settle for an afternoon of dog-walks and Powell's and our favorite Korean bento (more on THAT to come! Stay tuned!) and homemade iced almond chai, and an evening of music and a homemade dinner. Could I settle for that, he asked. Well I suppose that doesn't sound too bad. I mean come on, really, he had me at Powell's. We would compromise (which can sometimes feel like an all-too familiar feeling in this business) and settle for doing a substantial portion of work and fill our day with a few of our favorite things. Not all that awful. We've certainly had worse days off. And in the end the goal is to get the work done as early as possible to try and free up some time during the week to pursue other creative outlets. Things like: new mandolin melodies, impromptu dinner parties, furniture wheeling and dealing, reconnecting with loved ones in town, finally taking advantage of that cell phone bill and and catching up with that special someone on the other coast, going for walks, and reading. We do a lot of reading during this time too. And this is the kind of reading that keeps our passion for the job in perspective. We are true school-nerds at heart and are firm believers that not only is learning always possible, but necessary. Thanks to many dear friends in the business who have turned us on to some of the best culinary reads. Cookbooks, Primers, Food Memoirs, and Gastronomical Literature are sort of like our new obsession.
8 Questions, we asked the question: Last great book you shared with a friend?
What's on our list?
Some choice "Old" favorites include:
"Super Natural Cooking" by Heidi Swanson, which put food, color, and film in perspective, "Joy of Cooking," "Chez Panisse Café Cookbook", and "The Art of Simple Food," which started it all, and "The French Laundry Cookbook" by Thomas Keller, which was used by my dearly beloved ones to prepare a ever-memorable birthday feast for yours truly.
New on the list?
"A Homemade Life: Stories and Recipes from My Kitchen Table " by Molly Wizenberg, " With a Measure of Grace" by Blake Spalding and Jennifer Castle, and "Gluten-Free Girl," Shauna James Ahern's book which has us itching for her next installment, as well as "On Food and Cooking" by Harold Mcgee, a true find for Evan's ever-inquisitive mind.
Thanks to the many friends out there who passed these books along to us as we fully intend to share the wealth of knowledge abroad. What about you? What's the last great book you shared with your friend? Food related or otherwise?