There was no mistaking it. I could hear the strains of jazzy music from way down the block. Not in an invasive driven beat sort of way, more like a subtle, provocative lure. I follow the sounds till about one storefront away; It was then that I could make out the tune:
“The groove is in the heart—The groove is in the heart– No, I couldn’t ask for another–Your groove I do deeply dig
No walls only the bridge–my supper dish, my succotash wish”
And then the visuals kick in and jive so perfectly with the music, that rather than walking through the entranceway, I boldly climb into the place from the patio and become part of it, where folks were supping and sipping on their first cocktail of the evening.
And then I am the restaurant and the restaurant is me, flirting shamelessly–with the music, the diners swaying to it, the endless stream of people passing through. So I grab a cocktail menu offered to me like the membership card to an elite, avant garde club. I order a mojito but not just a standard mortar pestle lime and mint leaf type, but a sassy concoction– a “firefighter” with jalapeno infused maestro dobel tequila, lime juice and a drizzle of pomegranate juice.
Settled in, I take a look around, enjoying the easy does it glaze over vibe. I feel my stress melt away like soft serve icecream, all smooth and creamy.
Op art in bold primary colors dares me to look back via a Mick Jagger playful, unblinking glare. Very Andy Warhol, I’d say.
And with nary a glance at my most attentive waiter, he glides over and takes my order down sans pad and by heart.
In scant minutes, the parade of cooked to order dishes comes, in perfect succession and wows me further still.
The “Tartare de Boeuf Au Couteau” with wafers of tasty hand cut beef, truffled toast with a delicate quail egg atop was a first for me, and certainly memorable.
My “Salade Caesar Au Homard” is crisp and light with romaine lettuce, poached maine lobster, hard boiled egg, tomatoes confit, and tarragon caesar dressing, introducing a mixture of textures and tastes as playful and appealing as the saxophone music streaming in.
The more I order, the deeper I fall.
And while I wasn’t looking, at the lovely bar upfront, two people begin to dance together.
I believe that they were strangers not ten minutes ago.
Now how do you like that?