Monday, July 12, 2010


i have two yellow pear tomatoes ready to be picked in the garden, my radishes came out and i planted some pumpkins. it may be to late to get any sort of serious harvest from them but they should grow quickly so my thought was it is good for the boys to see. i planted two small hills of what should be 4-5 pound carving pumpkins and two small hills of what the package said could grow to be 200# pumpkins. they just sprouted in the last day. pole peas are growing like weeds and are more tangled then i would like them to be, but my beans arent in the best of shape. squash is going well but i am getting some browning on the leaves. all of my herbs are going very well.

in your local produce update we are towards the end of strawberries, but are getting really good local cherries, blueberries, blackberries, and even a few raspberries now. asparagus locally is done with, but beans of all different sorts are in full force now. sugar and snap peas are available as are summer squash and zucchini. we still anxiously await peaches but are seeing the beginning of nectarines. most of the growers i interact with had a very hard spring so the thought is that they will be late up to a month with most things. the market in Cannon Beach is on tuesdays and is in full swing from 2-6 pm. i am also seeing an increase in roadside stands as well.

the few day of high heat last week were pretty rough. kitchens tend to be hot, and air conditioning is non-existent. people are on edge, patience is limited, and when its hot- restaurants (on the coast at least) are busy. really busy. the heat and sun change eating habits as well. people eat later in summer than they do in the winter, and even later when the sun is out. not unusual for us to get killed for lunch at like 330 or 4pm, then have the restaurant sit relatively empty until almost 7pm. we are at the time of year that i walk into the kitchen and start sweating and dont stop until i get in the car when i am done with my day. it is near impossible for me to get ahead, so i have to prioritize just to stay afloat. i have a few new cooks we are working with, and one or two in particular that i am always working on what we call "sense of urgency". surprisingly few cooks understand it. when you get in trouble like that in a kitchen you are "in the weeds". it can happen when your behind on prep, when tickets come quicker than you can cook them, when the phone rings constantly, or when your a man down. the good news is when you can pull off a service in the weeds, you walk away at the end of the day with a feeling of accomplishment and it creates a stronger bond between the staff. we have to rely on each other more than ever this time of year, and i always get a few surprises on who will pick up the slack, and who will break. either way, i love the rush, and the push. i love being in the weeds cause the thrills that are involved, but thats definitely not always apparent to me till my day is over.

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