Currently browsing posts by Jeff Burkhart.
Kimberley Lovato’s Foodie Five interview with Jeff Burkhart:
Jeff Burkhart interviewed by Christopher Kimball on America’s Test Kitchen!
IT WAS ONE of those social gatherings where everyone stands around holding a glass of white wine in one hand while simultaneously balancing a small plate of pasta salad and cocktail shrimp in the other.
I had done my best with the shrimp and had almost secured a mouthful of pasta salad when a woman asked me what I did for a living.
“I bartend,” I said between sips of white wine.
IT WAS GOING on 11 o’clock, and she had been at the bar for nearly three hours. She wasn’t drunk or even intoxicated, she was just there.
‘HEY,” SAID the 50-something dude wearing dark sunglasses, inside, at night.
“Did you make this margarita?”
“Did you to use 100 percent blue agave tequila?”
“I made it with Cuervo Gold, just like you asked.”
“Cuervo is blue agave,” he said.
“If you say so.”
THE HOT WIND blasted through our little bar when the front door opened. Warm air rises, we are taught in elementary school, but someone should have reminded the two 40-something women standing in the immediate vicinity of that little sirocco. Let’s say quite a few eyes raised along with the two short skirts.
I LOOKED AT the clock on the wall. It was late, later than I am used to seeing on a clock in a bar, perhaps because I have become so used to restaurant hours.
I brushed back my hair, straightened my tie and smoothed out my vest. What restaurant uniforms lack in originality, they make up for in presentability.
I stepped up to the bar, picked up a half-empty glass and set down a cocktail napkin. Habit is a hard thing to break. I sighed a long sigh before someone intruded upon my melancholy.
IT WAS ONE of those nights, the type of night where everything goes just right. All the food came out on time and all the drinks were perfectly balanced. It was about as perfect as any night in the restaurant business could be. Sure, I would love to take credit for the rightness of it all, but then I suppose I would also have to take the blame for all those nights where everything just goes wrong.
The front door of the restaurant was held open momentarily by a blustery gust of watery wind. I struggled with that door, along with my umbrella, before entering the foyer victoriously and a little wet. Nobody ever notices the little victories.
It had been a typically enjoyable evening. The two ladies had enjoyed a cocktail two appetizers, a split salad, and glass of wine. We were all relaxing and enjoying the wonderful afterglow of an evening well spent. Truth be told, they were enjoying it, and I was working it. People sometimes forget that while they are at a bar for fun, the bartender is there to work.