I’m pretty sure that inhaling a large chunk of homemade pickle into your trachea would be an incredibly painful way to die, and I say this with some certainty because I nearly did it while having lunch with the Mayor today and it hurt like hell. Also determined during this incident is that forced washing of the sinuses with vinegar does absolutely nothing to resolve allergy related issues and may, in fact, only exacerbate them. A reasonable person could probably have made that determination without an experiment to prove it, but I like to find the silver lining in these things.
Luckily, I was not actually sitting with the Mayor when it happened, because that would’ve been totally embarrassing and I probably would have ruined his lunch because he’d be too worried about me to eat. Plus, I wasn’t actually having lunch with him so much as near him, and anyway he isn’t actually the mayor anymore. But, he is still important enough to travel with a small posse (consisting of one guy) and be on TV and stuff, and my point is that since my friend Beth and I have the good taste to dine at the same establishment on the very same day and time as Andrew Young, you should totally take my word for it when I say it was good and you should go there, but try not to let whoever is sitting with you say anything funny when you are about to take a bite of the awesome pickles.
I chose this outing to serve up a long-awaited mess of RouxBarb again because it flies in the face of a previously established RouxBarb rule, and thus seemed fitting, and because in so many ways it’s spring. And spring, dear readers, is when RouxBarb is in season.
Those of you who’ve been nibbling on this from the beginning may recall that I do not eat tube-shaped mystery meat. (Do not bother searching for this reference in order to fact check, as I have removed it from the blog. But I totally said that. And meant it.) My slide down the slippery-slope of sausage started a couple of weeks ago when three things that make me weak in the knees collided into a perfect storm. My friend’s totally HOT ex-chef brother came to visit from Durham (Thing 1), and after helping to untangle a technology issue I was having (Thing 2), grilled up a batch of beer-boiled (Thing 3) chicken brats, which I ate without hesitation, and all Things considered, very much enjoyed.
So when Beth started pestering me to go have lunch at this gourmet hotdog place that opened a short while ago near where we work, in spite of having earlier flat-out refused an invitation from my boss to go there (“I DON’T EAT HOTDOGS”), I slid further down the slope and agreed.
But before you judge me for this blatant flip-flopping, just understand a few things. First, they make all their own hotdogs. Second, my foray into the underworld started with a turkey dog and, as Beth points out, there aren’t many parts of a turkey that I wouldn’t eat anyway, and chances are great that the good people of HD1 are not back in the kitchen grinding up turkey tongues to toss in my hotdog (I don’t really even know if turkeys have tongues, because I’ve never really had need for that particular piece of information, and thank god for that because I’d hate to imagine the scenario in which I would need to know if turkeys have tongues). Third, all of their dogs are served on the most AMAZING toasty buns that mostly look like a giant slice of Texas Toast, but somehow stays curved into a bun shape by forces of physics I can’t begin to understand. And finally, perhaps the most important part, the dog I chose also featured pimento cheese. PIMENTO CHEESE, baby. (Or actually I thought it did when I ordered it, but a more careful review of the menu finds it was actually “tomato-pimento marmalade.” Whatever. ) You understand now, right? (cont. below picture)
The $15 bill for my hotdog might have given me pause, in spite of how incredible it was, were it not for the large order of sweet-and-spicy-maple-syrup-and-red pepper drenched waffle fries that I couldn’t finish eating because I was stuffed, and for the “shrimp & grits” that I also ordered, which were not the bowl of goo you are thinking of (which I also love), but rather grit-battered and deep fried jumbo shrimp on skewers. I have no clue how the whole grit-batter thing works and, frankly, I don’t care, because I’m fine to let HD1 keep doing their delicious thing without asking any questions. Not included in the $15 were the pickles Beth tried to kill me with, which were also delicious once I regained consciousness, and a frosty cold bottle of Grape Crush that she ordered from a plethora of drink options, which include an impressive array of beer and a few mixed drinks that we will have to try some other time when we don’t have to go back to work. Because we will go back. And I bet Andy will, too.