Election Elixir

The bottle of Maker’s Mark had been sitting on the shelf for months, unopened, a testament to the fact that I can have good booze in the house and not feel compelled to indulge at the drop of a hat.

But after the president spoke tonight to his administration’s alternately pathetic and misguided response to COVID-19, I broke the wax seal, opened the bottle, and poured a shot over ice.

November cannot come soon enough. In the meantime, thank G-d for good bourbon.

Post Meeting Snack

Finishing up the Thursday night troop meeting around 8:30, we were both starving and I was way short on calories.

The sidewalks roll up early in our little beach town, so we found ourselves at IHOP. Unperturbed, Aaron ordered up two full entrees: T-bone steak and eggs, and tri-tip ends and eggs. And yes, he ate it all.

He probably ate five times the calories that I did, but I’m 55 and on maintenance and Aaron is 17 and bulking up for baseball season. He can get away with it.

As an aside: there is nothing like bonding over diner food.

Kick-Back Stack

Sunny’s eyes just about came out of her head when the waitress at Kick Back Jack’s set these monster blueberry pancakes down in front of her.

My dear wife had her revenge, though: she made it through about 80% of this massive stack, then jumped back into the car and drove another four hours.

Never underestimate the ability of a thin person to make food just seem to disappear.

Son vs. Sandwich

Sadelle’s turkey and roast beef triple-decker is not a sandwich to be taken lightly. There is at least two pounds of deli meat, a half-pint of coleslaw, and six slices of bread on this beast. I don’t want to think of the calories.

A half portion did me in, but Aaron managed to destroy the entire sandwich in a single sitting. It was a remarkable thing to watch. Had he been older or less athletic I would have feared for his health. As it was the only ill effect was an instant need for a long nap and a very late dinner that night.

All of this is provocative, though. The primary focus of the Las Vegas food scene seems to be excess, and quantity is the easiest way to go, from all-you-can-eat buffets to cocktails served in Big GulpĀ® cups to man-versus-food restaurant entrees like these. Watching my son chew his way in one sitting through the daily caloric intake of a small village, I was struck by how ordinary scenes like this have become in the US. Gluttony may be a deadly sin, but it is a common vice in our lives.

This deserves more thought and more room, so I’ve started gathering string for an essay on big food. Please share thoughts.

Morning Cheat, Vegas

So we saved our calories and fats for a day and then went to Eggslut in Las Vegas for breakfast the day before Xmas. The sandwiches were delightful, each handmade to order with care. Even with my shrunken stomach, one sandwich was not enough, so I ordered two, a Fairfax and an Egg Salad.

The Fairfax is the apotheosis of the egg sandwich, with the soft scrambled eggs smooth but not runny, the chives giving a savory boost, all of which in an ordinary sandwich would have made the slice of cheddar redundant. On the Fairfax, though, the cheese deepens the savor, and the siracha mayo comes in to finish each bite with a gentle kick. There is a LOT going on in this meatless wonder, and you will have to keep careful control of yourself to avoid gobbling the entire thing down in less than a minute.

The egg salad would not have been a normal morning choice for me, but I’m glad I tried it. Eggslut alters your idea of plain-old-egg-salad forever, mixing the chopped hard-boiled eggs in a honey-mustard aioli and chives, then laying it all on a bed of arugula before setting it lovingly on a warm brioche bun.

You can get an egg on a bun a lot of places, and you could make it at home for pennies. But the care and exquisite mix of flavors that go into Eggslut’s creations is a satisfying reminder that greatness in the kitchen comes not from the creation of elaborate delicacies, but from the art that turns a prosaic dish into culinary poetry.

Yes, it was a cheat meal, but it was so, so worth it.

Sunday biz travel brunch

Showed up on a busy Sunday afternoon and they sat me right down. They were so fast with an immense iced tea, so accommodating with my obsessive-compulsive substitutions, and so tolerant of my flagrant head cold that after lunch I ordered dinner to go.

The Broken Yolk Cafe is now my official North County (San Diego) bruncherie.