Champagne Shopping Binge

"The champagne shopping binge/ is over/ The check is about to arrive/ and nobody knows how much it will be/ I know I don't give a shit not now" -From "FROM A DISCARDED IMAGE" by Franz Wright

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

He's Short, And I'm Shallow

Weekend with H was fantastic, as always. Arrived into Dulles Fri night at about 9:30. (Tried Independence Air for the first time – it’s as though a bunch of buddies were sitting around drinking beer and one turned to the others and said “Dude, you know what would be cool? Let’s start an airline!” and all of the friends were like, “Duuuudddde.”) H picked me up and we went to her house to spend the night chatting and drinking wine. (We have finally learned that going out Fri night will absolutely ruin us for Saturday, no matter how many times we promise that we’ll be home by 4.)

Walked into H’s apartment where she had arranged an AMAZING spread – 8 kinds of cheese, fruit, salami, proscuitto, red pepper spread, roasted garlic… unbelievable. We never even made it to the nuts or chocolate. We opened a bottle of Chilean red and spent the night sipping and chatting. (H had an amazing selection of inexpensive wines - if only Manhattan would get a Trader Joe’s, maybe I would actually be able to have a full wine rack for once. And yes, I am choosing to blame our apt’s inability to keep a full wine rack on Manhattan’s lack of bulk shopping, not on the fact that we drink end up drinking all of our wine the moment it enters the apartment… )

H caramelized some onions, which were amazing on toasted bread with pears and fontina. Definitely making this at our next party. Tastes delicious, sounds impressive, and requires absolutely no cooking knowledge whatsoever.

Sat we walked to Georgetown and got lunch at a little French restaurant. H was swept away by our waiter’s accent, and while the European thing doesn’t do much for me, he did have the most gorgeous blue eyes…

We had 8:00 reservations at Panache, a new-ish Spanish that has received good reviews. Not shockingly, our afternoon nap ran long and we were running late. We called to tell them, and got a cheerful “No problem.” When we arrived at the restaurant at 8:30 we could see why – it was practically empty. It did fill up by the end, but the crowd was somewhat questionable – what’s DC-speak for B&T?

Decent space, nice if somewhat clueless service (did feel badly for him as the girl at the table next to us sent back her wine for no reason and was just generally impossible – she spent the remainder of the dinner fighting with her date as H and I tried unsuccessfully to eavesdrop without being too obvious), sugar-ladened specialty cocktails… The petite fillet was excellent, and the sangria tasted like Juciy Juice. (Remember Juicy Juice? We weren’t allowed to have soda or Hi-C growing up, so I had a lot of it.) All in all a good time, though I do think our meal at Café Atlantico featured better food.

Then off to the Ritz for cocktails and to watch the end of the BoSox game. They won, H was happy, and as I fully expect the Yanks to buy as decent pitching staff for next season I’ll just let it go and wait… Met up with some of the Yale boys at Smith’s Point, which appears to be the DC equivalent of Dorrian’s. You are connected to everyone there by less that three degrees of prep school, Ivy League, or “oh yes, we boarded our horses together when we were young. I did the whole prep school and Yale thing, and while my father never bought me that pony, I can certainly hang in that crowd. In fact, I enjoy it once in a while. A very long while…


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