Sunday, July 15, 2007

Sugar, surgery, sweat and stress: the first half-week at Harry's Food and Cocktails

Above: us in the kitchen. I'm at left.

We've been public now since Thursday (the full website is yet to come), and are just starting to get our sea legs. Certain difficulties have been... considerable. Take, for instance, non (or barely) functioning major equipment (which willfully resist repair efforts), next to zero dry storage space (a zillion shelves soon to come), a frightfully (over)crowded walk-in, not to mention the insanity of a dozen or more cooks in a space that often seems as small as a ship's galley.

The way around having no acceptably functioning ovens on soft-opening day?

1.Pack up everything pastry related, veiling raw panic with incredulous humor at the surreal nature of the situation.
2.Call Rainbow Cab .
3.Take over part of a dear friend's bomb-ass prep kitchen a mile away. During lunch service. While said friend is (simultaneously?!) doing a tasting menu and a photo shoot for a magazine. (By the way, THANK YOU TIMES INFINITY, YOU ALL KNOW WHO YOU ARE.)

And what if on that day you're missing a sliver of quadricep from a muscle biopsy performed that morning at 7:00? Codeine sulfate and cyclobenzaprine, that's what.

Keep in mind that the above solution does not resolve the issue of unloading again back at the restaurant only to discover that there is almost nowhere to establish a dessert line, much less stock the prep anywhere...

Needless to say, desperate times called for desperate measures. Tony ain't got the monopoly on kitchen stories!! Things are much much calmer now, at least for the moment, as we try to organize systems in anticipation of the impending onslaught of customers.

In fact, it's the calm before the storm.

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