Wednesday, April 23, 2014


With reservations
The other night we dined with
dear "C" at Le Perigord just off
Sutton Place. Upon arrival our
guest likened her fellow diners
to those found at any assisted
living facility. With advanced
vintage comes an atmosphere
that can be civilized and genteel.
That meant one could hear what
was being said at our table. All
of that was worth the risk of an
EMT with paddles visiting any
to the other tables at any time.
Sound proof
Sadly the idea of a quiet restaurant
left Manhattan some time ago. In
it's place are establishments where
the volume rises as the room fills.
Meaning I can often hardly hear or
barely comprehend what my guests
are saying. While there are certainly
a few places left in town where one
doesn't risk a deafening blow, most
are either incredibly expensive or
absolutely atrophied. All I want is
to enjoy a meal in peace and quiet
at anywhere but Frank Campbell's.
Early bird special
Others seem to share my problem.
New York magazine published
"The Everything Guide To Getting
Older". One feature was a dining
guide titled "Hear Yourself Eat".
While I appreciate others of like
mind, I wish they weren't on the
edge of dementia. Could it be that
the older we get, the more we're
willing to listen and hence prefer
a venue that facilitates just that?
I've got all of my teeth and can
still chew the fat with the best!
A la carte
I'm an old soul and therefore enjoy
dining out in a kindler and gentler
environment. My preferred haunts
tend to be haughtily hushed with the
humbler fare of my people. While at
one time I vociferously complained
of club cuisine, I now crave a mixed
grill or pot pie. As time advances it
seems that many of us return to our
historic roots and that often includes
restaurants. I simply prefer dine in an
atmosphere of courtesy and dignity
rather than book a table at ten p.m.
A rose by...
In these complex times, the
simpler things seem to have
left the menu. A classic ham
dinner, egg custard, or apple
pie have been replaced with
wild boar, panna cotta, and
molten lava cakes. Have the
names simply been changed
to protect the innocent? Less
is more. Does anybody else
get frustrated with all of this
foolishness? Who needs a
menu to order a martini?
Light my fire
Over my life I've been blessed
to dine at many fine restaurants
worldwide. Yet when queried
about the most delicious thing
I've ever eaten, I name Frank's
Mother's cherry pie. You see,
the purest of ingredients crafted
with love is the ultimate recipe
for success. If loving that makes
me old fashioned, then I happily
assume that mantle. As long as
old fashioned doesn't mean old.
Just time tested, tried, and true!