As part of my “going out despite the weather this winter” project, I attended the first First Thursday artwalk of the year. Since none of the friends who had promised last month to come with me are adhering to the same “going out” project, they all bailed.
All I cared about was dinner. One of the women I was supposed to meet recommended Built Burger, which everyone is always talking about, but there’s no way I could have eaten what I was sure would be a half pound of beef with all the trimmings.
I walked around for what seemed like hours and eventually came upon a cheery, well-decorated place called Cafe Paloma. It was Mediterranean-ish and I was starving, so I took a seat near the picture window. There was lots of red and a tuba hanging from the ceiling. The crowd seemed to be drawn from the art walk–lots of black clothing and nice eyeglass frames.
I ordered “whatever is closest to chardonnay” off the wine list and the waitress told me they actually do have chardonnay as their house wine. Note: For the sake of my pride I should mention that if they had amazing Turkish wines, I would have blindly ordered one as I subscribe to the When in Rome doctrine. But they didn’t.
I chose the mucver (zucchini pancakes) after much deliberation and was eventually informed that the chef said they weren’t available. Also, my chardonnay hadn’t been chilled so I needed to select something else and would pinot grigio be okay? It would. I ordered a cup of the spinach and chicken soup.
I cast a glance at the couple next to me. The tables are really close there.
“If you could just not freak out, then everything would be okay,” an attractive young brunette woman was saying to an attractive young brunette man.
“The important thing in a relationship is just not to freak out.” He literally did not say a word. Not while she paid her share of the check, not while she excused herself to the ladies room. I soon figured out the likely reason he was speechless: he was in rapture from the flavor of the food.
My wine came and it was fine. My soup came with warm grilled pita and it was some of the best soup I’ve ever had in my life.
The art in the 619 building was standard. I tried on earrings I didn’t buy. I had chips and smokehouse almonds and mango salsa that I did buy for $1. I took the bus home and my seatmate felt that the movie he was watching on his phone was more important than me having a place to put my arm.
That soup, though. That spinach and chicken soup.