13 – Yellow Snow

Italian Spinone

If you read my last blog then you will know that we have been thrilling our customers at the desert table during this snowy weather with our Melting Snowman, where we build a 6 inch snowman which melts before the diners’ eyes to give them a surprise amuse-bouche.

Unfortunately we have had a few problems with, er, yellow snow getting into the snowmen. It seems that one of the neighbourhood dogs has been getting into the area of our kitchen garden where we get the snow from, and for some reason one of my Chef de Partie did not check his ingredients properly.

Regrettably, the first person to notice this was one of our customers. Who just happened to be the mayor of the local town. Who just happened to be dining with two other councillors… and the food critic at our local newspaper… and the local Rabbi. I don’t think it meant the dish wasn’t Kosher but it certainly wasn’t “kosher”-genuine. Well, it was genuine, in fact far too genuine, it just wasn’t quite wasn’t what they, or I expected.

Fortunately, none of them actually ate it. Unlike my Chef de Partie, who then did have to taste it. All of it.

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PostScript: My Chef de Partie was so aggrieved by what had happened, that he “voluntarily” stayed up all night to try to catch the canine culprit. Sure enough, the dog did return, somewhere near 5am apparently, and was just about to do his thing again when my chef managed to chase him off. He swears blind he would have actually caught the dog if it hadn’t been for the frost-bite in his fingers. Pathetic excuse.

The interesting thing is that he says the dog looked a bit like a curly coated retriever. When I showed him a photo later of a similar breed he confirmed that’s what it was. The thing is, the photo I showed him was a Spinone Italiano – they look similar but they are quite distinctive. And rare as pets in the UK. In fact, there is only one person I know who lives near here who has one: Carotene Half – the owner of The Bologna Pony. Surely he wouldn’t stoop that low, would he? Would he?

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