Egg Dishes; Humor
Posted 31 October 2002 - 09:34 AM
In addition, your input on when humor can play a significant role in a dish (with any available examples) would be of considerable interest to me.
When you seek to incorporate humor, how much does it matter to you whether many diners "get it"? Similarly, on the respect you accord to ingredients and the various views expressed through your cuisine, to what extent would you be heartened if a diner visiting Heartbeat considered the cuisine delicious, but were indifferent to other considerations?
Posted 31 October 2002 - 02:15 PM
On humor, I used to offer it in my previous restaurant Miche Mache (see a caped chef's post) through menu pricing - $6.36, $17.26, $12.02 - and terms like "Roller Skate" to title a skate dish where the skate was rolled around Provencal style vegetables. I currently receive considerable direction as to how and how not to word my menus. If I win the lottery and open my own empire, I will re-inject my menus with humor.
As for the pricing at Miche Mache, many guests "got it" as poking fun at the $12.99 thing, which is really cheating to charge $13, but some did not. The comptroller of Mac Warehouse worked himself into a frenzy trying to figure out if the pricing helped us achieve an exact food cost, tax advantage, etc. He actually presented me with his pencil figuring and was quite flabbergasted when he couldn't make sense out of it. He wasn't relieved when I told him the pricing was just a joke.
On why someone dines at Heartbeat, I just want them to like what they eat. If someone doesn't choose where they eat based on some of the beliefs I espouse, that is up to them. I am here, first, to please my customer. This is the hospitality business. Because I have a deep sense of the effect of my choices on those I feed, I buy the way I buy and cook the way I cook. I do this for selfish karmic reasons as well as good will.
I will engage anyone regarding their views on all that we've discussed through these eGullet postings. I do all I can to support farmers and artisans who sacrifice much to do what many of us know in our hearts to be the right things. If I can help enlighten someone, I will do so proudly, but I refuse to push my views on others. I personally have ignored important truths because I was turned off by the presentation. I would never want to turn anyone off and have them find a truth too late.