I took my rabbit to dinner
8 March 2017 § 1 Comment
8 March 2017
It seems last week was a happy one; I was happy even in the solemnity of Lent beginning. On mardi gras I went to Spring House for the first time. I had been meaning to go there for a while, even just for a drink, but the idea of being a gold dust woman or sipping smoke signals whilst sitting across the road from the shambly communist-industrial skeleton of the destroyed public library depressed me. On a warm rainy spring evening, though, the fast caught up to me and I was ready for a real meal.
My green trousers (and their best silk friend) made their first appearance of the week. I’m surreptitiously wearing earrings, but you can’t see them.
I studied the wine list ahead of time to let the choices decant in my mind and was already looking forward to the Crossbarn pinot noir. Ordering pinot always feels a bit risky, but this one was fruity and quenching, and structured enough even for a cabernet devotee. (I also tasted the Atlas Peak cabernet, which was good, but I wanted that pointed pinot to go with my pork…)
This sweater has been my favourite over the past few weeks. It’s rabbit angora and feels like wrapping a sleepy pet bunny round my neck. It also happens to shed rabbit hair everywhere like an actual pet. I think I acquired the headband sometime in college; it is a good way to wear flowers in the winter and is a sort of everyday fascinator. Zigzag socks are an important antidote to feeling saccharine.
I ordered bread with pimento cheese, although the real star was neither the cornbread nor the miniature buttermilk biscuits nor the stretchy incredible foccacia but rather the beraisined bran bread with butter, small shy slices humbly sweet and dense. Next, the wild mushroom toast was a rich, figgy mess masquerading as a salad; a thick slice of (again) foccacia with mushrooms and bits of leaves strewn over its surface would have amused me, but the taste of goat cheese and the fig sauce lured me into a caramel dream.
I was already pleasantly satisfied by the time the pork tenderloin arrived, but I took a rest and a sip of wine and dove in. It was the best kind of southern: wrapped in bacon to create porkception, with thickish mango-rum-ginger-macadamia ‘sauce’ in artful blobs here and there, and broccolini proud in its slender tenderness waiting patiently to provide a solid salty counterpoint—whilst somehow also flirting with the airy cloud of sweet potatoes. The roasted tomatoes were little and quite the jester of the meal, jaunty dots just making a waggish honest living on my plate.
At this point, the redolence of my meal had displaced my perfume, which floated out of the window, into the aerosolised rain that hovered, each minuscule drop suspended, outside. Swirling the last of my wine, I listened to the conversation of three men dining at the other table in the room. They were discussing their trips to New York, their children…they sounded relaxed. I was, too, for the moment. Regardless of any frenetic burden that could descend the next day, nothing could disturb the soft rest that enveloped me after a lovingly made and slowly eaten dinner.