This week at the Bistro has been busy, complicated, frustrating, exciting, fun and interesting. I would say that just about sums up every day of my life here.
I returned home from my trip to Hocking Hills, last week on Wednesday. Michael and I had a great dinner that night at Boodles restaurant in Madison Heights where Bruno, the owner, still makes table side Caesar and Steak Diane. The Reefer Men were the band for the night (there is often a piano player). Bruno has been hit hard by the pandemic, construction and the economy and is trying something new. By the ladies dancing in the front (there is no dance floor by the way) I think the idea worked.
Thursday back at work Max our sous chef & Big Max, our new pantry cook, and I packed up food for the Congregation of Every1. Jeff Hocking, from Novi, is one of the founding members of this philanthropic group. Since 2013 COE has been providing survival backpacks to the homeless in Detroit every single month. The packs are stuffed with socks, blankets, toiletries, food and basic necessities to survive on the streets. You can help by joining a packing party here in Novi or donating cash to COE. Check out their website to learn more about this great organization. www.coe1.org
Friday and Saturday were busy as ever. The kitchen does an incredible job putting out great quality food at a high volume. I am so impressed with each person back there. If you are not watching The Bear on Hulu, you should… if you want to see what a kitchen can be like. The intensity is real.
To decompress, a group of us went kayaking down the Huron River in Ann Arbor. The weather wasn’t looking so hot, so we lost about half our group but for those that came it was well worth it. The sun magically stayed with us the entire day. I really enjoyed the afternoon bonding with the staff. I’m amazed that as different and unique as we all are, we genuinely like each other and actually enjoy spending time together. It’s great to be outside, laughing and relaxed and the only rule is no talking about work. I only broke our own rule once! Riah (server extraordinaire and master of many languages) said to me that day that working at the Bistro and developing some true friendships here is one of the best things she has ever done. My heart swelled a little that afternoon. But my favorite part of the day was a few people dumped going down the cascades (remember I have a sense of humor of a 14 year old boy) You can ask Amanda for the details… she may or may not have been one of the folks that entered the water involuntarily. We got off the river just before the nasty storm and took shelter at York for an excellent meal.
Monday morning, I came into the Bistro while we had a new double convection oven installed, did a deep clean behind the line and organized my office. That afternoon it was Tori’s turn to deep clean the bar (a bartender does this every Monday) and she was surprised by the unannounced HVAC guy tweaking a cooler. Whoops… sorry Tori. I wrapped up my weekend showing Michael how to make risotto properly and we enjoyed a lovely bottle of Amarone I was gifted from our regulars David & Alice. It was perfect with beef tenderloin and a fire outside on our patio at home. Thank you for the bottle!
Jumping back into the week Tuesday, lunch was smooth until this entire side of the Novi Town Center had a flash of loss of power and somehow that ended up with a plumbing issue. We closed for the afternoon until we could have running water again. Thank goodness it was only a few short hours. I swear it is always something. Running a restaurant is crazy with the daily ups and downs. You never know what a new shift will bring! I’m looking forward to a presumed quiet weekend here at the Bistro as many of you will be gone for the 4th. But if you are in town, we would love to see you and hear what you’ve been up to!