I don’t know how the French do wine at lunch.
Correction: I don’t know how the French do wine at lunch and actually get anything done during the rest of the day.
We finally reached the end of a very long, involved project this week, so it was time for a nice, expensive lunch to celebrate. (Have I mentioned how much I love my job?) Proximity dictated the choices, so I made a reservation at One Market. I hadn’t eaten there in several years–and frankly, I recall being underwhelmed last time–so again, I went in with the bar set pretty low. We wanted to drop some coin, and this place has the balls to charge dinner entree prices for lunch. Win-win. We ordered a bottle of the featured wine and set to work.
I started with Persimmon and Mache salad with candied pistachios, shaved fennel and pomegranate. It was actually pretty tasty. But my eyes were on my coworker’s dish the whole time. She had the good sense to order the Beet (no, it’s not a typo like I thought) Carpaccio with marinated rock shrimp and radish sprouts. I’m a freakin’ whore for beets, and this dish looked (and tasted) gorgeous. “PURPLE!” screamed the beets, “GREEN!” screamed the sprouts. And bonus points for beets in place of beef. Apparently, it’s a common dish in vegan restaurants, but I’d never seen it.
Then I moved on to the Autumn Squash Skewer. (But wait, it’s January…) I don’t know that I would have normally ordered it, but the other veggie choice was literally billed as “Vegetarian’s Choice”, which was—duh— your choice of any four of their side dishes. Which just made me feel like I was pickin’ my sides at Boston Market, you know? Not to mention the fact that one of the sides in question was garnished with smoked bacon. Is bacon a vegetable these days? But I digress. The skewer was nicely done. The big chunks of squash made me feel like I was getting something, I dunno, substantial, and it sat on a bed of broccoli rabe and dried fruit vinaigrette. The dish felt like an entree, instead of a collection of misfit sidekicks, and I was down with that.
Anyhoo, dessert was a perfectly serviceable mini coconut cream pie, which only made me dream about throwing it into someone’s teeny tiny face. Not that it was bad: more that it was twee. But thank God for its twee-ness, because I had to go back to work, stuffed and buzzed and barely functioning. I almost fell asleep at my desk half an hour later.
Again, I ask, how do the French do it? (Fuckers.)
(Originally posted January 18, 2007)