Friday, August 29, 2008


Yesterday was the prep day from hell in getting ready for our monthly wine dinner, this month our annual Harvest Dinner celebrating the hard work and products of our primary produce suppliers Gene and Beth Nowak of Mayfair Farm.

These multi-course meals are a lot of work: think about cooking Thanksgiving dinner for all your family and then multiply that by ten. I went in the kitchen at 7am and I never really left it until just after we opened for dinner, around 5:30pm. I blanched and peeled hundreds of tiny yellow tomatoes for the gazpacho, sliced about half a bushel of heirloom Corno di Toro peppers, cleaned and roasted 10 pounds of green beans, and so forth and so on.

You get the idea that I was constantly in motion all day long trying to get ready for the Harvest Dinner. And if ever there were a day that I really did not need any interruption or distraction in my day, yesterday would have been that day. So what could have been been more fitting than at three o'clock when a server came into the kitchen to tell me, "The health inspector's here."

Surprise! Depending on the inspector, it's generally a two-hour guided tour of the facility. But our current inspector's a really reasonable guy and when I told him that I was going to have to keep working while he did his thing, he was most agreeable.

I was shocked to learn that he has read this blog (and probably is reading this post, so thanks for working with me) and my comments about the health advisory that we are required to display. Those of you who read this blog know that I believe that the advisory is ineffective because it confuses those who read it. It was really unexpected to have a reasonable conversation about the confusion with the inspector.

I know that no day is ever perfect for an inspection, but why the single busiest day of the month?!? Just the restaurant gods making sure that I stay on my toes.


  1. Even with stress, you still pulled off an incredible meal. Mmmmm, still thinking about the Yellow Gazpacho and the Green Beans and Potatoes. Who could have EVER thought Green Beans and Potatoes could be so exotic and appealing! Thank you Ed!

  2. Thank you, Jay. Always my pleasure to cook for you.

    I still have no idea where the green bean and potato dish came from. I know that I started with Patatas Bravas as a base idea, but how it morphed into a dish with green beans and olives in it, I don't fully understand myself. These things just come into my mind and I write them down on paper and go cook them. Weird, but true.

    I will publish the menu and some comments over the weekend so everyone can see what we are talking about.