Thursday, September 21, 2006

Let me eat cake...

Hey kids!

First of all I'd like to thank all of my fabulous friends for their generosity last week. Thanks for the great grub and the wonderful gifts for my birthday. You're all very thoughtful. Thanks!

Last Thursday a couple of friends took me to Zingerman's Roadhouse for dinner. It's one of my fave restaurants and this visit was no exception. I started with a wonderful tomato and mozzarella salad (Insalata Caprese). They used perfectly ripe heirloom tomatoes (orange, yellow, crimson, and striped purple), their homemade fresh mozzarella, locally grown organic basil, excellent quality Italian extra virgin olive oil (can't remember the name), and Tellicherry black pepper. Simply divine. The table also shared an order of their fabulous spicy onion rings with homemade spicy ketchup. I then tried the soup of the day- a wonderful Texas Beef and Bean with Niman Ranch beef. For my entree I ordered one of several macaroni and cheese options. I ordered the one made with Grafton cheddar (Vermont), smoked chicken, green chiles, and corn. It was wonderful! They use Martelli pasta for their mac'n'cheese. Martelli pasta is the best in the world...seriously! We sell it at the store. It's about 5 bucks a bag but it's worth it! I also had a side order of "Green Bean Casserole". They use delightfully crisp (not canned) green beans, fresh mushrooms, and a perfect onion ring on the top. They were offering a new dessert which I was entirely willing to try...a key lime and coconut coffee cake with macadamia nuts presented with macadamia nuts, homemade coconut gelato, and a homemade fresh mint syrup. Delicious! A fabulous birthday meal on my birthday! One of my co-diners was so pleased with her side of grits that she took another order home with her. They're having Rosh Hoshana specials and New Mexico chile harvest specials coming up...

On Friday I actually returned to my part-time restaurant job after a lay-off of about 4 months. It's good to be back! The re-design of the bar is fabulous and they also now offer several "Small Plate" options in addition to the regular menu.

On Saturday I was treated to dinner by a plethora of groovy friends at Richter's Chalet. I haven't been their in years. It's a great German restaurant and you can be well-fed for cheaps. It's not very vegetarian-friendly as it's a German restaurant...I think they even put bacon in the water. I had the French Onion Soup, the Schnitzel ala Holstein (lightly breaded veal sauteed in butter with a fried egg, anchovies, and capers), and the Schwarzwelderkirschtorte (Black Forest Torte) for dessert. Yum! German food is fairly simple, but wholly satisfying. We then went over to BST's for cake, but never had any cake as most of us had dessert at Richter's. I opened my gifts (thanks to everyone!) and we just sat around and shot the shit. Conversations ran from human penis on dog (the new IKEA catalog), childhood stories, politics, and more. Thanks everybody! I took the cake home and made a pig of myself for a few days. Some co-workers gave me a Bill Knapp's chocolate cake and then I took a Boston Cream Pie home from Saturday. Good times! I even had cake for my B-Day on Wednesday at work (a chocolate bumpy cake with a chocolate cream filling). Let them eat cake! Damn skippy!

Sunday was spent with friends eating and drinking. We had a "Cabernet Shoot-Out" and it was a lot of fun. Great food as always!

My adventures since Sunday have been pretty much non-existent. I don't intend to single out any one gift, but I will because it is so frickin' awesome. My landlord-types and roommate got me a frickin' huge-ass Le Creuset Dutch oven. They had given me one years ago also, but this one is about twice the size. It frickin' rocks! Now I can braise bigger briskets, more short ribs, and even roast whole chickens now! It's kind of celery greenish and it's beautiful! I can't wait to braise something when I have about 6 hours free.

I'm very excited because I received my DVD copy of The Proposition yesterday. I've mentioned it earlier as I saw it twice in the theater. The screenplay and music are both by Nick Cave (my favorite musician). It's very dark and brutally violent, but pretty realistic. I watched it again last night with commentary by John Hillcoat and Nick Cave. I also watched all of the extras. I certainly learned a few things. Most of the indoor scenes were actually shot at night as it was reaching 57 degrees Celsius (134 Fahrenheit) during the day. All of the actors were wearing layers of traditional clothing. The heat affected the performances in that people spoke more slowly. The brutal heat was also dangerous and made things very difficult for John Hurt, but his performance and appearance shone through. I also learned that my favorite actor (Noah Taylor) was in it and killed off in the first scene. I didn't even catch that at the theater. He's arguably the best Australian actor and he's not even billed in it. Pretty cool. It's a very violent and grisly film, but beautifully done. I highly recommend that you rent, Netflix, or buy it! The music of Nick Cave and Warren Ellis (Dirty Three) is beautiful and haunting.

I was flipping channels last night and I stopped on C-Span for a while. It seems that every time they are filming a session of Congress Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz from Florida is speaking. She's a fairly liberal Democrat and I always like what she has to say. Look for her to go places (not that she isn't somewhere already).

I've got the day off today as I now have to work on Sunday. That's why I'm posting during the day for once. That's all for now!

Random poll- Orange juice. High pulp, some pulp, or no pulp?



Blogger Kathleen said...

Sorry I missed your b-day dinner, but it was Mom's b-day. And it's been forever since I've been to the store. Will have your present next time I see you.

Orange Juice - High Pulp - preferably fresh squeezed (not that I drink OJ as it's high in citric acid which seems to trigger cold sores which I don't enjoy.

1:23 PM  
Blogger Jason said...

Kathleen- That's okay. They put bacon in the water there anyway...

3:19 PM  

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