5.10.2009

Blue Moon of Kentucky

On our walk home from the cafe yesterday I told Evan that my drink of choice at the end of Sunday (the beginning of our "weekend") would depended on how the Brunch service went.

"If everything goes smoothly, and if the menu goes over well, then I'm going to treat myself to an extra large glass of a nicer-than-usual red. But if things do not go smoothly, and I feel like I've been hit by a semi, then I'm going to have an extra large glass of whiskey on the rocks."

We both felt like there was a lot riding on today's service. The time putting together the menu, and the work put in to making it happen, coupled with the hope that it would be well received (in light that there was only one fried-egg sandwich on the entire thing! Gasp!), made both of us a little anxious. Neither of us slept well Thursday, Friday, or last night, our dreams even ridden with all the "what ifs." Even once I awoke, I realized I'd been experiencing butterflies in my stomach throughout the night and into my waking state. Ugh. I tried to keep telling myself, "It's just one service. You just gotta get through this one service."

So how did it go?

Well, we served up a lot of this today:

Buttermilk Biscuits and Rosemary Mushroom Gravy

And a lot of these:


Wild Lox Omelet
with bacon, red onion, goat cheese, and avocado, topped with crushed hazelnuts and pesto-verde, served on a bed of greens

We served so much in fact that we ran out of food 3.5 hours into service. We should have seen it coming; it was the brewing of a perfect storm. Mother's Day, our first Sunday open (which have always been our busiest day of the week), and the crazy, and I mean crazy amount of loving supporters who have poured through our doors since we first reopened them. Really, Folks. We could not feel more blessed!

But there is another side to this story, the side that breaks my heart and left me teary-eyed in the dish-pit this afternoon, and that is in regards to the fact that we had to turn many of you away today. We also ran out of items that were printed on the menu and were forced to substitute, and for this I apologize. WE ALL APOLOGIZE. We simply had no idea how this new menu was going to run given all of the various factors surrounding it, and we owe those of you an apology that left our place disappointed. When we had to call service at 12:30, I couldn't help but look at Evan, and upon our eyes connecting, we both looked down and shook our heads. How could we not see this coming? It was disappointing to say the least, both of us lacking the verbage to express our feelings of frustration and defeat.

Definitely a Kentucky bourbon night.

Despite the negatives, we feel this experience has only greased our wheel, and that we have a much better understanding of not only what kind of turn-out we can expect for a Brunch service, but also which items people are jonesing for. Um, can you say Biscuits and Gravy? What about French Toast? So yes, Portland. Thank you. We adore you for your patience, your kind words, your courtesy, your humor (Thank you to all the people who made an effort to make me laugh this afternoon. I needed that.), and your hungry-hungry hippo appetites. We would be nowhere indeed, if we did not live here, and have all of you nice people to call our friends. Thanks for that.

5 comments:

Marianne said...

When I come visit Portland again, I'm coming to see you guys for brunch at 9 am sharp. You must be really great to run out of food. What an awesome problem. :)

kati said...

so it's a whiskey night, but it could be so much worse! it could be a whiskey night because no one came. instead its because you are more completely adored than you even anticipated. and if played right, a day of short supply can potentially incite a desperate future demand. :)

About this Tim Roth guy... said...

Well, shit. Remember when everything was up in the air and you didn't know what was going to happen with the café? And then you sold out of everything because we all love you so much? It's true, we love you. And one day of running out of food doesn't change that. I mean, you're a great reason for neighborhood folks not to have to go far, but you are human after all. Give yourself some credit for coming up with a fantastic menu and giving yourself an opportunity to make it sustainable for you to continue to offer. Here's to the future...

Swift "Squeaks" Blackstock said...

That terrible feeling in your chest and the pit of your stomach should be replaced soon by the warmth of bourbon (belly) and the sweet song of people singing your praises (heart). Because we love you, we are thrilled that you were overwhelmed with support and trust you'll work out the kinks and quantities at lightening speed. Please expect us to be happy for you, even if we're hungry. Just limit us to one entree each next time so we don't feel like jack-asses later, okay?
love, love, love.

Memry said...

I promise to join Hungry Hippos Anonymous, just let me have one more bite of that sublime Strawberry-Rhubarb French Toast before I go... Really and truly - it was so good to see you guys bursting at the seams, kicking serious breakfast ass, and in order to do my part I will no longer order three entrees at a time, but will pace myself at one entree a visit, making Sunday brunch at the LRBC a part of the week's routine. xo!