Saturday, June 28, 2008

The Wind-Up Gets Ensorcelled

Frank Bruni, the food critic for the New York Times, becomes downright rhapsodic when describing a dish he likes. Why I love reading about restaurants I will never go to, and listening to descriptions of farmers' markets in cities thousands of miles away, is an issue to be probed at another time. For now, we will dwell on Bruni's 6/25/08 rhapsody in pork. His review of two wine bars in NYC has a handful of gems that rival my previous number one favorite Bruni turn of phrase ("like a bright white archipelago on an emerald sea, dabs of house-made ricotta").

This week, Bruni declares himself "ensorcelled"* by the pigs from a Virginia farm (in particular, the blade steaks carved from them). "The arugula blunts the meat’s punch, while Parmesan in the salad brings saltiness to the brawl." Bruni, sir, we are only in paragraph 3, and you have outdone yourself.

I love this stuff, but obviously it's pretty ridiculous. Food writing can seem like so much self-indulgent bullshit. But think how open his senses must be to the experience of the meal (or to the thesaurus?) to be able to write things like that. For all the times the wind-up has said, "I'd like to do some food writing..." (and some have even said they'd like to work at a food magazine), how many of us have tried it? So I had the idea to get a few of the wind-up bloggaz to a fancy restaurant to try this out. And coincidentally, Angela is badly in need of a tuscan kale fix. So tonight at Rendezvous in Central Square in Cambridge, we will open our senses to the food, delve into the thesauri, put up some posts, and see if we can even come close to Mr. Bruni. Look for the posts tomorrow, or after we recover.

*ensorcelled: enchanted, fascinated. under the spell of a sorceror.

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