Very, very hungry

NY Times: In Virginia Beach, Restaurants Where the Food Moves Sideways. Probably the first time that a New York Times reviewer has darkened the door of a Chick’s Oyster Bar. Props to Mimi Sheraton (is that a real name??) for finding the restaurants in the list, referencing Beautiful Swimmers, and calling out Hatteras clam chowder, on which I was raised. Boos for missing the Duck-In, which has a lousy buffet but the finest bucket of boiled shrimp, and one of the finest views, money can buy.

Friends for dinner

Lisa and I were lucky enough to get an old friend, Daria, to join us for dinner last night. I knew Daria from my undergrad years at UVA, where she was the roommate of Caroline, a good friend in the physics program. Then I bumped into her at Sloan. In about three weeks we’ll lose Daria to the vast midwest, where she’ll be relocating to join her fianc&eacute. So we were thrilled that we finally got her to join us for dinner, and we pulled out all the stops with three experimental dishes.

Lisa made a version of a broth-based minestrone with cabbage, zucchini, carrots, onions, garlic, celery, tomato, white beans, and herbs. We jointly produced a pollo diavolo — a broiling chicken flattened, covered with crushed black peppercorns and a little salt, marinated with olive oil and lemon juice, and grilled. And the meal ended with a black cherry granita: tasty but not quite right (perhaps a little too sweet—we’ll definitely make it again and play with the proportions).

Now that Lisa is regularly traveling for business, it was nice to have the chance to collaborate in the kitchen with her on a weeknight. My only regret is there wasn’t much chicken left over. Maybe next time I’ll make two.