A friend of mine recently mentioned that one of his co-workers was looking forward to the new season of “Hell’s Kitchen”. While I am a fan of several reality shows, including “Top Chef, I told him I had no desire to ever watch that show again…as I get to see “hell’s kitchen” up close and personal a little too often in my life.
Here is an example an editing difference between the two shows
a) Top Chef = neatly uniformed waiters serve twelve plates in unison to the awaiting panel of tasters and then the tuxedoed captain returns to the kitchen “fire the fourth course please chef.”
b) Reality Kitchen = neatly uniformed waiters await behind an imaginary line at the front of the kitchen, six inches from the wall, silent with arms folded behind their backs, until Chef points at the floor to signal approach possible. Chef then hands the waiter a plate of passed appetizers “Miniature crab cakes with lemon dill mayonnaise with capers”. Waiter then repeats the sentence “miniature crab cakes with lemon dill mayonnaise with capers. Chef! “ or else? An engaging eight minute scene from Dante’s Inferno= lots of bleeps, smashing china, flashing knives, insults and impromptu apologies for mistakes of such magnitude in the world wide scheme of things that they can’t possibly be rectified.
Working a wine tasting dinner has a lot of quirks and small challenges. Just setting the tables; each place setting with nine pieces of silverware, five types of wine glasses in a progression of seven wine pours while polishing each piece takes time. What interests me is just how beautifully each course of food has been designed to perfectly compliment each wine. There is usually heady magic in the air as the intoxication builds, the wine maker makes mostly witty introductions to each wine and the guests become even more “engaging”.
Last night, somehow we started out backwards- before the first guest I offered “miniature crab cakes with lemon dill mayonnaise with capers a wonderful match with the tet-du-cuvee champagne” came into focus…I noticed the aqua blue eye shadow, a strangely cut fur coat (the outside temperature was rather chilly) and immediately wished I had my reading glasses on. Her purse was so unusual I temporarily lost my breath. Peeking out of the interior was a taxidermist’s replication of a five pound Pug Puppy. At first I wondered if the dog was real- as in who would bring a dog to a wine tasting. But, apparently this stuffed dog was a fashion accessory! (Clearly a candidate for table five =desperate single members of the wine club?)
Usually after each course and the plates are cleared the wine for the next course is poured and the previous glasses are removed. One of guests had other ideas about moving on for each wine. At the end of his meal he loudly proclaimed “the service was superb and I certainly got my money’s worth.” I should say so; even at wholesale the three bottles of wine you drank during the meal should warrant at least 800mg of Advil tomorrow morning.
Most uninhibited guest = entered the kitchen to request a large carry out box- he then trolled the room for any uneaten designer chocolate truffles made by the pastry chef.
Best course= single vineyard pinot noir 2006 with foie gras stuffed quail with black truffles.
In light of today’s release of the latest unemployment figures …I look forward to getting my ass singe-ed in demi-hell’s kitchen a little more often. And look forward to the season finale of Top Chef? Will Carla make it to the top three chefs’ elimination?
Will I be serving fire roasted gerbil butts with chipolte aioli on house made saltine crackers in a brown polyester uniform from the Park Service Fashion Week in Big BendTexas…stay tuned!!!
“The Wine Holder Necklace costs $25 for two and holds a regular sized stemmed glass with a stupid looking lanyard.
Keep your hands free at parties by keeping your wine close at heart! This clever little clip with adjustable strap holds a regular-size stemmed glass to your chest, giving you the freedom to snack and socialize as you sip! ”