Port of Call

In the restaurant industry, you learn to expect the unexpected.  Guests who don’t know what they want, but need everything done in a very specific way.  We do our best to accommodate with a smile, and very quick to talk shit as soon as we walk into the kitchen.  We will never compromise your meal, but you will become the bud of an inside joke for the evening.  There are people with money and no class, tourists who refuse to tip, and people who just don’t know how to dine.  But, we continue on and hope that they appreciate their night.

Two nights ago, we had an Indian couple dine with us.  They didn’t want anything on the menu and requested the chef prepare them both extra spicy vegetarian dishes.  They wanted a wine to go with their meal and did not have any idea of what type of wine they liked.  We selected a nice Oregon Pinot Noir (Inexpensive per their request).  It was Wallace Brooks, and is really nice for the price.Image             They did not like it.  They then asked if they could try something sweeter, like a port.  They didn’t know of any ports that they liked, and didn’t know the difference between Tawny or Ruby.  They were very demanding, and we tasted them on at least four ports before deciding on the Taylor Fladgate 10 year Tawny.  They said, “We like this one, we will take a bottle.”


I have never heard of such a thing, a bottle of port for two people to drink with their dinner.  I explained to them that it would be better to drink one glass at a time, and that I didn’t even have a full unopened bottle for them anyway.  They said that was fine.  They had me running back and forth all night.  My restaurant was full and it was during peak hours on a Friday night, but my server Fernando would never had been able to keep up with his other tables if I hadn’t stepped in.  They had so many questions about the port and eventually drank all of the 10 year.  I brought them a few more samples of 10 year Tawny, but said they preferred the Fladgate.  So I brought them the Taylor Fladgate 20 year Tawny.  “Now that’s more like it, he said, this is the same price as the 10 year right?” He asked.

Of course.  He had me right down the names of all the ports and left happy, but this was just one of those nights that made me feel like a gymnast, constantly bending over backwards.

this is the business I have choosen, it’s full of crazy people serving crazy people, and I guess that’s what I love about it, it gives me something to talk about.


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