A Weekend in Paris with a Driver
We were toying with the idea of "Albergo Santo Stupido", but don't want to call down those kind of karmic vibes. (Do I need to explain that all the signs in Roma last weekend read ''Santo Subito!" Saint Now!" God, I hope not). It was nice that John Paul was anti-Nazi and anti-Communist, but I can't get past his attitudes towards condoms.....Like the old story about the Vatican cleaning lady: "Hey, Papa......You no playa the game......you no maka the rules!" How many dead for something so stupid? How many MILLIONS of dead? And, who is to say he DIDN'T playa the game? During WWII, he was in an anti-Nazi guerilla THEATRE group.....sounds like a gay thing to me....and all those costumes!
As I am just now reassuring Amanda...... as I dive into an insane amount of prep in no time at all: we do Monday Night Dinner to learn, to try new dishes.....and to protest the over-priced, pretentious restaurants of Carmel and Carmel Valley. Our theoretical food cost is 33%. Our high ticket item is $14. I just found out the The Running Iron, of all places.....has $25-35 entrées. This from a place with only one fat fryer.....fish and fries, together as one. Lord save us. Sysco sends a big truck. Lots of ''product''.
We started our Monday Night deal after two bad meals: one at Will's Fargo (owned by Bernardus), and another at the Village Fish House. Didn't want to DINE, just wanted to EAT....something I didn't cook. At Will's we had a bottle of bleccch wine, two ceasars and two steaks. Canned dressing, two day old baked potato (don't bullshit the bullshitter!), no veg, and black and blue steaks we had ordered MR. Tried to eat the things, to not be the temperamental dick chef in somebody else's place.......sawed around the edges, and then finally sent it back. They re-cooked the same steak!! Obviously thrashed and micro-waved by the vengeful crew. Final bill: $90. Wow. Then, at the Fish House....supposedly groovy, wood fired oven....local Italians: two caesars, three glasses of Paso pinot, two salmons. Got the same damn bottle dressing, TAIL of salmon (I don't serve the tail to my cat.....I don't LIKE my cat). Dry as dust.......85 bucks....and we sat on Costco epoxy chairs in the gravel by the parking lot.
Yeah, so......in theory, a guy making $10-12 an hour driving a truck or a hammer can eat in our place for two for $40-50.....And we have live folk music. Ironically, the parking lot....even 27 long windy miles from town....is full of Lexus and Mercedes, along with the pickup trucks.....We sell out every Monday..about 60 covers. Problem is, there is no second seating: no one leaves, and there are for damn sure no stragglers wandering around Cachagua after 8pm.
Her Majesty’s Wedding Gift to Camilla
11 April 2005
Cachagua Valley, Prague, Two Tree Plain
v Duncan’s Pizza: Corralitos sausage, ham and bacon; artichoke hearts, jalapenos, and mushrooms $6.00 and $10.00
v Micah’s Pizza: Crème fraiche, prosciutto, carmelized onions, fresh basil leaves, fresh and domestic mozzarella $6.00 and $10.00
v Cate’s Pizza: Sardinian olives, garlic, basil, fresh roma tomatoes, artichoke hearts, fennel, asiago $6.00 and $10.00
v Roasted Carrot, Fennel and Roma Tomato Soup $3.50
v Cachagua Caesar or Earthbound Farms Field Mix Vinaigrette $3.50
v Corrallitos Market Applewood Smoked Sausage with Store-made Kraut $4.50
v Four Spoons: Venison Tartare and Ceviche of Local Sea Bass $4.50
v Season’s First Oregon Wild King Salmon, Smoked by us…$4.50
v With roast baby potatoes, Organic Asparagus, and Brown Basmati Rice
v Cachagua Style Spare Ribs of Pork with 5 Chiles $12.00
v Creekstone Ranch Natural Tri-tip with Mushroom Gravy $9.00
v Our Confit of Duck with Baby Endive Kraut $11.00
v Roasted Rosemary Garlic Fulton Valley Organic Chicken $10.50
v Bacon Roasted NZ Venison with Pomegranate Poivrade $12.00
v Pan Roasted Monterey Bay Sea Bass with Cilantro Kiwi Confit $13.00
v Roast Pepper Steak Filet of Aussie Grass Fed Beef $14.00
v Pan Roasted B3R Ranch Hanger Steak with Shiitakes and Chiles$10.00
v Susan’s Homemade Apple Pie $3.50
v Death by Brownie with Saffron Glazed Pineapple and Carmel Mousse $3.50
v Basque Sarcasm: Sweet Muffin Fudge Burger with Strawberry Catsup $3.50
v Arroz con Leche and Candied Fennel, Apple Lasagnette and Caramel Mousse $3.50
v Pears Poached in Riesling with Crème Anglaise $3.50
v Amanda’s Meyer Lemon Cake and Beaver Cleaver Double Chocolate Cake $3.50