Try me again and I promise I'll be more fun this time ~ from preview of "Le Weekend"
My weekend officially began with a brunch date who thoughtfully asked where I wanted to go. Given the lovely weather, I chose to walk to the Magpie where we discovered a bartenders' convention.
Well, not really, but standing out in front was a bartender from Amuse and sitting just inside the door was a bartender from Dutch & Co. and I stopped looking after that.
Barkeeps gotta eat, too, just like regular people.
The place was mobbed, but we'd arrived toward the end of brunch, meaning that all the late risers had just started rolling in for morning-after sustenance.
With Chaka Khan's "I Feel for You" playing, my date brilliantly suggested starting with a bottle of M. Lawrence "Sex" brut rose and who am I to argue with a date that begins with sex? Our server seconded the motion, sounding like a hardcore restaurant type by saying that Sundays and Mondays should always begin with bubbles.
Come to think of it, I'm not even in the business and I wholeheartedly agree with that sentiment.
It was impossible to resist the sausage of the day, a curried wild boar with blue cheese and pear jam to provide piquant contrast, so we didn't. Chef Owen remains the sausage king in these parts (downtown Carver and J-Ward).
The music was killing it with vintage soul - the Time, Janet Jackson, the Dazz Band -which I had no problem giving myself over to.
Today's fried fish sandwich was made with scallops (now there's something you don't often see) and plated with kimchee slaw and crispy fries, so I loaded that slaw onto the fat bun and did double duty inhaling everything at once.
My date's biscuits and sausage gravy reminded me of Toast's owner saying how good Chef Owen's biscuits are and musing whether or not Owen would make him biscuits for his last meal on earth.
Good biscuits are hard to come by and I grew up with a grandmother who made them from scratch at least twice a week, so I know.
As the place gradually emptied out, we moved on to dessert of chocolate, caramel and coconut over shortbread, to my mind, a clever take on the Girl Scout cookie Samoa (my favorite), which they were calling a torte. Or tart, depending on the server.
Tort, tart, tomato, tomahto, whatever.
With the last of the pink bubbles, it went down as smoothly as a Chaka Khan song. Hell, I'm not even a bartender and I know that much.