Eating out is a wonderful thing. Eating out for work is especially a wonderful thing. I have the good fortune of supporting managers and executives that ask me to plan dinners (I LOVE planning work dinners. Love, love, love.) at lovely restaurants every now and then. And when I plan said dinners, I hear magic words: “And you’ll come with us, right?” Which means I get at least one fancy or fancy-ish meal every couple of months. (December was a fantastic month.)
Last night, I got to cross the Blue Water Cafe in Yaletown off my list. O-M-G. Seriously. If you have ever been there, you have had that OMG moment. We were placed in a lovely semi-private room with walls lined from floor to ceiling with very expensive bottles of various red wines and funky blue glass waves hanging from the ceiling. We had two great servers just for our group and the set menu was wonderful. I had an organic greens salad with goat cheese filled pastry puffs, Arctic char with dungeness crab, fennel and seaweed, and chocolate lava cake. The wine was a lovely chardonnay from Painted Rock and a to die for Burrowing Owl Athene red blend (my new favourite wine that, after extensive googling, it looks like I can only get it in a restaurant at a very inflated price…)
This was a very belated holiday dinner for one of my bosses’ team members and I got to facilitate a white elephant gift exchange. I’d forgotten how fun those are and it was hilarious to watch these grown adults opening, stealing and reacting to gifts.
I really appreciate these dinners because I don’t get to eat and drink like that on a regular basis. But I don’t think it would be as fun to go to work dinners if the people weren’t fun and interesting – the best food and wine don’t make a difference if the people suck – so I feel lucky that I get the best of both worlds. So I <3 the work dinner.
On the other end of the spectrum, the work group that I fall into went bowling at the Commodore lanes tonight and we had great fun. (Five pin bowling is hard! We laughed at ourselves a lot.) They don’t sell meals there, so we brought in take-out sushi and I enjoyed that just as much as my Arctic char. These are the people I spend a significant portion of my week, that I genuinely like; and it was nice to do something together that was outside of work.
The company we keep during a meal is important. Sean and I could be eating out, a fancy home cooked meal or delivery pizza – but it’s not about what or where. It’s about sitting together and enjoying each other’s company. It’s one of the reasons we survived the cleanse – we had each other. If only we could keep the dining room table clear all the time so we could have more sit down meals. Something to work on.