Tonight, the YBC team had dinner. I am not going to comment on the restaurant (because that article is coming – but know, it was deeelish). What I am going to comment on are the details. The details on the YBC team and what makes for a dinner out that turns out just right.
Let’s start with Marc. Marc led us to this place, sight unseen. He was the Golden Ticket, if you will. The one that knew this tucked away gem, or so we thought. He made the reservations. He knew the specs. I called him when I got lost, as did Mr. YBC (technically Mrs. YBC because she was the driver!). But Marc is up there on the ‘coolest dudes I know’ list, excluding any Beaverhausens, natch. He knew to order the house made prosciutto. Check #1 in the awesome category. Next, he knew that Ana and red wine get along. Umm…. That might be checks #2-#8. Then he knew to offer TWICE the handmade garlic knots. Seriously. Marc. It might be the red wine talking, but high five to you, fine sir. The Mister can’t wait to hang out with you.
Next up, Mrs. YBC. She is legitimately the sweetest person I have met in quite some time. She is an open book – if she doesn’t like something, she will let you know. Also, she loves Parker Stevenson, Andrew McCartney and that brown haired kid from Weird Science (we *may* have been talking about Steel City Con). A high five to you too, Mrs Y! It was so fun to see you again! The Mister can’t wait to hang out with you too!
Finally, Mr. YBC himself. The man with the plan. The ‘always has a great idea in the works’ guy. This guy knows his business, and he is good at it. Do you have a business question? Maybe just shoot it to him, cause he knows the answer. Really. He does. We talked business, and ideas, and at one point Marc called me out for thinking too hard! The Mister just wants to have a pastrami cook-off with you. Ha.
So where does that lead us? The four of us, sipping on a total of four bottles of wine, exchanging stories and laughing our night away. Have you ever had that kind of night? Where it seemed improbable at the beginning that it would end in any way but terrible, but then there you are, empty wine bottles, drying hams next to your head and a tray of sweets to make your grandma blush. How does that happen then?? Lets break it down.
- The venue. Something tucked back in, so as to not disturb the other diners. It needs to be something delicious, obviously. But something deliciously hidden as well and away from the other “normal” diners. You can’t carry on and cackle like you know you want to.. when someone has a hunk of prosciutto on their chin the size of Louisiana with other people around. This makes it more probable that the owners will be around because ‘what in the fresh hell are those people doing?’ It makes it better. I promise. Owners are cool people!
- The BYOB. Bring a variety, because you will enjoy it. Discuss the labels of each wine. Initially try to tell each other that you know about Cabernet, or Merlot.. and then end the night admitting to ‘buying based on the cool label’. It’s ok. We are all there with you. End the night discussing the highlights of boxed wine and wake up knowing you are not alone! Bota Box, we love you!
- The apps. There has never been a party in the history of all parties without appetizers. On this particular night, we had quite a few. Perhaps too many? Never. There are never too many apps. Fried zucchini, stuffed banana peppers, garlic bread knots, that house made prosciutto with cheese and pizza. That’s how you do apps.
- The break between courses called ‘salad’. Ok, this isn’t really a real course, right? It’s like sorbet only less, well, good. People like salad, I get it. But in a meal like this one, it has no place. Except, of course, for the break. Get a lil’ sippa water, munch a few greens, refresh yourself. You have more eating to do.
- The main course. This is where stuff gets real. Your friends will ignore you to eat, and that is just fine. Because you will be ignoring them as well. It doesn’t matter. What matters is that plate of lovingly made goodness in front of you. The garlic.. the pasta.. the parmesan. It all came together on this night. But don’t worry, if you can’t have Italian, you can always just skip dinner and dream about a heaping plate of spaghetti and meatballs.
Alright, well that is really all I have to say. I need to get these kids to bed and brush the Cabernet out of my mouth. I sure hope you all can find the perfect storm of a dinner for yourself. What an article, amiright Andy?!!? Please step aside as I gather my Pulitzer. Winkety wink.