First Feasts

green-eggs-and-hamSome families are really good at planning special alone time with one parent and one kid. We are not. We’re kind of an all-for-one-and-one-for-all crew. Several times a year, I get a bee in my bonnet about planning something alone with one of my kids, but then I never do it. As a result, my M.O. is to slap a “special time” sticker on an outing should I ever happen to find myself alone with one of my kids. A few weeks ago I dragged Devil Baby to a downright frigid farmers market and when we stopped for hot chocolate at French Meadow on the way back, I tried to act like it was some fabulous special time. She responded with barely more than a skeptical look while she ate her whip cream with a spoon. Apparently, it’ll take more than an errand and a hot beverage to get her attention.

This past Saturday, however, the stars aligned (or rather Doctor Dash decided, against all odds, to take the girls to a daddy daughter dance at our club) and I had Saint James to myself for the night. After watching him order the lobster poached in butter on New Years Eve in Florida and then meticulously inhale every morsel, crumb, drizzle, micro-green, bit and bite of a five course dinner, I knew what I wanted to do with him. I wanted to eat. Somewhere special. He was ready. Ready for Bar La Grassa.

securedownloadAfter his hockey game, we scooted downtown and without too much delay, scored a seat at the kitchen bar, so we could watch the action. Sitting shoulder to shoulder we watched while Isaac Becker checked plate after plate of gorgeous food coming off the line. We marveled at the pretty young girl in chefs whites working the salad station. We giggled at the server with the waxed curly cue mustache. We talked about books, movies, middle school and high school. We perused the whole menu, savoring the choosing almost as much as the choices. I sipped my Lambrusco Rose, he sipped his Shirley Temple. And we feasted. Plate after plate, passing before us, forks crossing, words murmured. Saint James was intrepid and curious and a joy to eat with. Here’s what we had.

Belgian Endive, Apple and Orange salad.

Calamarata with Raw Tuna (this is my must have – I dream about this dish)

Pappardelle with Veal Ragu

Crab Ravioli

Pork Ribs

Braised Greens with Ham Hock

I’ve had many memorable and happy meals at Bar La Grassa, but this one, the one with my boy, is my absolute favorite. There is nothing I love more than watching a ravenous kid eat, but watching a ravenous kid eat while his mind is being blown by new foods and flavors is a whole other kind of awesome. One kid down, two to go.

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