Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Keep on keepin' on...

Well, this is just about it, nary one month left before opening day. As Bill the Cat would say, "ACK!"

I'm going back and forth between minor bouts of hyperventilating and small moments of peace as I imagine the shop finished, myself behind the counter, finally getting to put faces to so many names who have become fans of the shop in its many conceptual stages.

As some of you may have already heard, Tamara Murphy's new project, Terra Plata, will sadly not be a part of the building. I am never one to get into the dirt of these situations, but I will say that I know I'm not alone in my regrets that Tamara will not be sharing space with us at the Melrose Market. She has, however, very congenially expressed her support of all of us who are in the space, and I wish her the best as well.

I am very excited to meet with proprietor Rus of Rainshadow Meats next week to discuss our neighboring shops and what each of us will offer. On a personal level, I am beyond psyched to have a neighborhood butcher! It is one of those NYC elements I miss the most; a man who knows his meats. Back in Brooklyn we lived over an old Italian butchershop that had been there for many generations. These guys were raised behind the counter, in fact when we lived there no less than 4 generations of the family worked in the shop on a daily basis; the elderly matriarch behind the scenes who churned handmade sausage in the back well after her retirement, her son who flashed his dazzling smile on anyone who walked in and could talk the talk like no other, and his boys, who hunched over cleavers effortlessly to pack the most amazing local meats into white paper packed bundles for our enjoyment. The best part was sitting out in our Brooklyn yard, drinking beers and watching the sun set over the BQE. Our man on the inside would randomly poke his head out of our shared window at closing time with two handsfull of made-that-day sausage in a gorgeous coil. A gift between neighbors, we'd thank him with a frosty brew and throw that meat puppy on the grill for dinner.

So I digress, but that is where my head likes to be these days instead of ruminating over an afternoon of phone calls with the DOR. Memories of sausage, they keep me going.

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