As I plan my 2014 Calendar, which has yet another incredibly exciting Sunday Supper planned for New York, I wanted to take a moment to tell you about this trip - but it's likely that you're better off if I just show you. You know how when you're having an incredibly big moment in your life and you actually, afterward, feel like you were completely stoned and buzzed and dizzy and breathless through the entire thing? That's pretty much how this trip to New York was. Words actually fail me.
We toured the Chelsea Market, I taught my very first Southern Baking class with a group of some of the most amazing women I've ever met (including the dear, dear Charlotte Druckman who became an "instant favorite person ever" person), we cooked for a room full of lovely New Yorkers and, in between, ate the best punjabi, pizza, chinese, thai, italian and snuck into male-only middle eastern eateries in the middle of the night to eat hummus and drink black tea. Best whirlwind trip of my life.
(A big thank you to Sarah Simmons and her crew at CityGrit for gifting us the use of their kitchen and dining room!)
So, it is with much gratitude to Andrea Behrends for capturing all the little and big moments of this trip, the nuances of each day, all of the gestures, all of the friends that showed up to support us, all of the food that we were able to so eagerly prepare and present, all of the guests who came and ate and laughed and had their own very, separate and intimate experiences outside of us. Thank you Andrea for being there and for the really wonderful gift that these pictures are.
A MOMENT OF SERIOUS, I'M NOT EVEN KIDDING YOU, GRATITUDE AND HUMILITY
As I write this and share these pictures, I'm feeling a rather spontaneous inclination to to say thank you. I should probably wait for an end of the year wrap up, but screw it. My heart says "now". Thank you to my friends who have all made this thing work, simply by showing up to wash dishes, by carrying heavy ass boxes of dishes all over god's green earth, by taking the most beautiful and meaningful pictures of all these important moments, by cleaning corn, by playing a live show for my guests, by setting tables and pouring wine and making playlists and by taking trash bags full of fish carcasses in your brand new car to a dumpster because the one at the restaurant was locked and not hating me when one ripped and made your brand new car smell like fish for months and months. I don't know how I deserve people like you in my life, but I'm so grateful. Bare with me while I gush, will ya?
The one and only Jessica Cheatham, BMR would likely be a big pile of neglected, sad, twitching broken dreams and, I, an overworked, stressed out pile of twitching brokenness without you and your immense love and kindness and strength of friendship and dedication. You're the hardest working girl I know. Thank you. Thankyouthankyouthankyouthankyouthankyou and I love you. You're remarkable.
Heidi Ross for being the strongest sounding board I've ever had and for putting in so many hours of your time simply because you believe in my ideas. You've brought order and style and enthusiastic partnership to my, ahem, romantic and batshit crazy brain.
John Donovan for being everyone's hero, every damn time. But mostly, for being my hero. You make me win at life.
Molly Levine for being the best sous I may ever have. I miss you every time I cook a Supper. I can't wait for the next time we step foot in a kitchen together... In San Francisco.
Andrea Behrends - you're always there with a camera, a badass attitude and serious server skills to bus tables and fill water. I love being around you. I love you're heart. I love you're joy. I love your ability to make a room full of super badassery come to life.
Joy Shaw for saying yes even when you should have said no and for always, always, always being my back up plan, and for always having a cocktail in my hand every time I plated the last plate - you were always a life saver and still are.
Robin Riddell Jones for being smart where I am lacking and making sure that everyone always had a lovely glass of wine to sip.
Alisa Martin, Caitlin Mello, Teresa Mason, Leia Buchanan, Shannon Wright, Sean Brock, Josh Habiger, Courtney Jaye, Mack and Holly Linebaugh, Heather Routh, Libby Callaway, Susan Sherrick, Aaron Clemins, Molly Fitzpatrick, Nicole Wolfe, Kahlil Arnold and the whole Arnold's family, Mike Wiley, Melissa Shoaf, Kindy Girdley, Ryan Green, Mark Tucker, Laura Wilson...
I feel like George Bailey at the end of It's a Wonderful Life when I think of all of you. "No man who has friends is a failure."
You all make me my most capable self. I love you all.
Here's to the end of a year, a New Year to follow and many more memories!