Sunday, October 3, 2010

Ups and Downs

Until approximately 6 PM today, this was one of the best weekends I can remember. Friday, My 20th birthday, was just a normal Friday. We served 130 people and everything ran smoothly. After service I slipped it out to somebody that I only had two hours left of my birthday. Everyone in the kitchen came up to me and said stuff along the lines of, "Mikey why the hell didn't you tell us it was you're birthday?" I told everyone that I wanted to focus on busting out service and not get distracted. So after work a few of the cooks bought me a beer and I sat at Graze until around 1 30 just hanging out. I went home and slept until the next day.

Friday I had new dishes too. The galantine was switched to a pork pate wrapped in bacon with brioche toast and a warm salad of heirloom beans and a maple sherry vinaigrette. It is awesome. And the other dish is a fines herb crepe filled with duck confit rillette served over a warm parsnip puree with a salad of watercress and drizzled with a concord grape gastrique. This dish is straight up BOMB.

On Saturday, I was in the weeds even before I got to work. I had burned through almost ALL of my prep on Friday night so I had to basically reprep all six of my dishes from scratch. Tory asked me to help him do some prep for his trip to New York, and I couldn;t say no. I was doing my damn best, but it was too much. But I, being the intern trying to prove myself worthy of a spot on the line, tried to be a hero and finish all my prep by myself. And I almost succeeded. Almost. Aside from Ed cleaning crab for me and a prep cook cleaning the beats I roasted, I completely reprepped my station. I cleaned and roasted 60 orders of delacata squash. I roasted parsnips and made a puree. I roasted beets. I julienned 4 quarts of radish and kohlrabi. I sliced 40 orders of beef carpaccio. I made 80 crepes and filled them with duck rillette. I smoked crab. I made 1 pint of chimmichurri. The Chimmichurri involves me hand chopping 6 types of herbs. I fried fingerling crisps. I portioned cheese. I cleaned and cooked and pickled mushrooms. I smoked crab. I cleaned watercress. I blanched heirloom beans. I toasted brioche. And i did all of this in four hours and skipped staff meal to get it all done. The whole first turn was absloutely crazy. The first turn was an hour and a half long, and we did 75 guests. Ed helped me get through the first turn and helped me and my partner on hot side, Mike, bust out plates and get everything out on time. The whole second turn, however, I controlled my line and didn't have any help from Ed. Mike helped me when Iw as in the weeds and I helped Mike when he was in the weeds. Tory, when the last plates were going out, yelled out, "Well done apps, good shit boys!" It was the first real time Tory had ever congratulated me. It felt good.

Then after work, I finished up cleaning. I noticed Nisse and Scott, the pastry cooks, working on chocolate curls. It never crossed my mind that chocolate curls aren't even on the dessert menu. I got off work, my parents were coming to pick me up, but I had to hang out with the cooks for a little bit. I sat at the bar and was having a few beers, most of them purchased by other employees as birthday gifts, and while Ed and I were having a serious discussion about how I can improve on my station, and I felt a tug on my shoulder and a hald Dragging me from the bar. There were Scott and Nisse, the pastry cooks, with a cake and candles. Graze was still full of customers, but the whole bar, which was half full of Graze and Letoile employees erupted in a round of Happy Birthday. We cut the cake, and I ate my piece, chugged another few complimentary beers, said my goodbyes, for my parents were waiting out front of Graze to pick me up. I hadn't eaten all day, and I was slightly intoxicated, (not sure they knew but now they do!) so they wisked me off to get pizza and took me back to my apartment so I could sleep.

Morning came and they came to pick me up. We hit up the grocery store and they hooked me up with enough food to last through my final month in madison. My gifts came, I was given two bags of frozen patties from Patties of Jamaica! THANK GOD! I had two for dinner tonight. I got a Manchester United Away jersey with Nani's name and number on the back. I got a new colts t-shirt and a colts rubix cube.

We had lunch, watched football then they left. I endured the colts game, and I'm still pissed about it. The one sour note on otherwise a great weekend. I found a feature on this blog and found out that my blog has been visited 1100 times. 34 of those times have been from Denmark. Not sure how that worked out. I had no idea that it was on such a big scale. Im global bitches! This prompted me to sign up for a program that allows google ad's to be published on my blog... and I get cash money for each viewer. So on that note... KEEP ON READING!!!


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