I love this life, the one I live here, living so close to Artisinal. You would have liked it but mostly because it would mean me and cheese and cabernet francs just down the street. 180 wines by the glass, with 70 varieties. I could come here and try a new one each day. I could, but I won’t. I’d rather do it with cheese, which would be rather unhealthy. Now cheese with wine, that’s a compromise, my friend.
Last time I was here, we were “taking the ring out.” It fit my hand now, so it was time. The hostess stared at it. I’ve never been a hostess, or waitress, but I’ve dated a lot of busboys, only they weren’t busboys at the time. As a waitress, I don’t imagine I’d be very good at handling the picky eaters. I’d be great at helping people decide what to order. I almost have that ability to know, even more than the person who’s eating, what they should have. Very scoop of vanilla, scoop of chocolate; don’t waste my time.
I love that this entire place smells of cheese. Because it is okay to smell like cheese when you sell actual cheese. It’s not okay that I can smell the bread of the man sitting beside me at the bar. I can smell the tang of his wheat sourdough. I watch him knife a square of butter, spoon it on a wedge of bread. He ordered a hat for dinner. The man who ate his hat was sitting on the barstool beside me. There’s certainly butter and puff pastry going on. Everyone can smell the butter, even my father who’s not here and has no sense of smell. It’s a wide shallow potpie. It’s another dimple on my ass. Another five dimples. Why are these people out there who can eat like this without harming their health? Oh my, it’s not a potpie at all. It’s an escargot hat. A layer of pastry tents the holy crock, and when he pokes at it, ribbons of garlicky steam breathe. I take it back; I am a jealous person.
“A real Australian Jammy Shiraz. You’ll like it.” He’s right. I’m sold on the word jammy. It does a lovely thing inside my mouth when I hear the word. Jammy. I think of plumy stone fruits. Of words ending in y, beyond scary. It’s Shoefly, and it’s sweet without being sickening sweet and easy. Shiraz is the college freshman of wines. Rioja is where it’s at for me now. I’m giving it a giddy up.