Boulette's Larder is the very cool or very weird little place to eat in the Ferry Building in San Francisco.
Boulette is a dog. Shaggy dreadlocked eminence. Boulette means "little ball". :)
And if your lucky and eat at the kitchen table..well you will be happy indeed! ( I love to eat at the chefs table or kitchen table at restaurants! )
The place is part shop, part open kitchen, and part place to enjoy a meal at a communal table out in the open of it all. The kitchen is just one corner next to the table, and they provision the Larder, the shop aspect, from there as well as breakfast and lunchs. Then in the evening there are private dinners.
So you sit with strangers and eat from a menu that changes every day. We went (Dad and I) last thursday.
I had the "early spring vegetable composition" which was warm artichoke purée, roasted artichoke, asparagus, young shallot, cauliflower romanesque little potato, trevisano, and was something that made me feel like I was eating warm sunny nature!
Dad had the pulled pork sandwich that they are supposed to be known for with pickled turnip & mixed chickories salad. But dont dare think stringy pork with nasty barbeque sauce!! I'm not a pork fan, but this was sublime.
He had a bottle of "2008 patricius tokaji furmint" a dry Hungarian Tokay wine, and even though I look about 14 most of the time, no one said anything when I had a bit too. It was very yummy!
We sat next to some business suit guys on one side and a tourist couple from Spain on the other. We couldnt talk much to the Spanish people as their english was not too good, and the business suit guys were all about some people they were doing business with and office stuff. What a waste! (Having lunch somewhere so divine and talking about work!
So Dad and I talked, not that we don't usually, but usually its me chattering on about stuff and him listening patiently. But since I was having some wine and being all sophisticated, I tried to be the interested one this time, and sort of brought him out a bit.
Its funny to see a parent more as a person than a parent, and Dad has been pretty quiet for a while, but the wine brought him out too, and he talked a bit about what he wants to do with the rest of his life. He said being in a Larder was apropos as he felt like he had this whole supply of stuff in him that maybe he should put to use. He said he has spent so much time taking in stuff from people, listening to their stories, probing their thoughts, that maybe he should write a novel or something.
I think its something he has had in his mind, but never really put a lot of importance on. He writes a ton for work, but its more technical. And now that he is 65, and his life so drastically changed, maybe he could retire, and do something else.
I'm the last kid to have regular demands on him as a parent, and I'm getting closer to being independent, although I don't support my self financially yet! But I think that would be great. My father the novelist! He's got the beard for it!
It felt real cool having my Dad talk to me about his dreams, like I was an adult. Trusting me with stuff that is sort of private, stuff that may or may not happen, but personal and with important decisions connected to it.
The wine was part of it! He had 3 glasses and me 1 (and a half!) and we were both feeling warm inside. We walked on the Embarcadero for a while to clear our heads, and he bought me an ice cream. Like I need that on my butt!
Funny me, part little girl, part grown up, and all mixed up in kinda a good way.