Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Ariel Pink dragged off the street, forced to do Schnitzel Boogie!

Ariel Pink must have been particularly hungry! Here he is on Food Gold, hosted by Elliot Aronow, quite possibly the most dull, unplanned piece of cooking programming I have ever set my eyes upon...Ariel stays true to his lyrics, but no lettuce onion or tomato, nor does any bread come his way. Fucking hell, talk about unplanned! I think this guy just happened to have a camera and was wandering down in SoHo and saw Pink and forced him into a kitchen where he knew some guy that had some food on hand. I mean, shitstains! A schnitzel should at least be pork! i know ariel is a jew (last name: Rosenburg) but come on, he doesn't sing 'i'm eating chicken schnitzel.' 
Being the truly wise man he is, he eats half the thing then exits kitchen door right like he truly doesn't give a fuck! Brilliant!. Then host Elliot, in bombast hipster form, gives props to the chef and talks ad-lib into the camera with a mouth full chicken. Stick with the music!

Here are the lyrics:
"mmmhhh, I'd like a Double Dell Burger: hold the cheese, hold the pickle, and the ketchup and the sauce--lettuce, tomatoes and onions only please. That's right.Would you rike cheese?lettuce, tomatoes and onions, only...Ah okay."Listen to Schnitzel Boogie Here.

Tuesday, 16 October 2012

La Poblanita de Tacubaya has the BEST

El Mejor Chile En Nogada Del Mundo M.R.
finding this sign, quite an achievement 
Endless walking. It was a little bit off the beaten track and the map that I was carrying around in my back pocket. I find the place. La Poblanita de Tacubaya. I take a seat on the colourful terrace and a  rather extensive menu presents itself, though I already know what I was coming for. The Chile en Nogada. I cant seem to resist ordering a plate of the mole as well. I see a few plates being sauntered out to my surrounding tables and it looks irresistible in all its dark, rich glory. In my clumsy, unpractised Spanish, I order the the Chile en Nogada and the Mole Rojo with chicken thigh. Chicken thigh is always the way to go in a stewed dish, its fat content provides for a more succulent taste than the dry snooze festival that is chicken breast. The slick haired waiter takes my order, seems a bit perplexed, perhaps even more than I feel when attempting to communicate with him. He returns a moment later and presents the Executive Chef Adalberto Diaz Laredo. His english is near perfect. He stands proud and attentive, 'I'm sorry, I just want to know why you order two main dishes for just one person.' He is calm, collected and more polite than any chef I have ever encountered anywhere on earth!  It seems that he cant understand why one person would order so much food. He seems rather pleased with my explanation that I ordered both dishes because, first, I was told it is the best Chile en Nogada in Mexico and second, the Mole on recommendation of his claim that it was the best in Mexico City, well,  according to both the menu and the bottom of the sign out on the side of the building anyway.

bright and colourful and overflowing with el grito swag!
The decor is colourful and welcoming, perhaps a bit over the top. Like a picture out of some strange American version of what a Mexican restaurant should look like - chairs and table clothes of reds blues oranges pinks purples greens. The walls and ceilings draped with Mexican paraphernalia. Of course all of this is not some kind of sick Americanised nightmare of Mexico gone wrong, it's all in relation to the Mexican independence day, El Grito, though is celebrated on 16th of September, seems to linger everywhere for the entire month and even gets squeezed into the first days of october until the decore is quickly exchanged for the skulls and oranges and blacks and whites and ghosts and hullabaloo of dia de los muertes.

So this is what the best on the planet looks like...
The food comes quick, as it should, a quick glance in at the kitchen and everything is running like clock work in there. Plenty of chefs, all dressed in white. Clean. Professional. Even wearing complicated and understated neckercheifs! A highly uncommon sight in any Mexican establishment, though not always a true tell sign of quality eating. Some of the best food you can eat will be cooked street side by a guy in a sweaty, grease stained Dallas Cowboys  t-shirt under a dirty apron. The slicked waiter brings out my two plates. They are more than just a main size. Now i suddenly realise the reason why both the waiter and executive chef were concerned about my order. Each dish is enough for two people handily.

It's Rich. Rich Rich Rich!
The mole is the richest, by far, that I have tried. The chocolate has this mouthwatering dark, bittersweet undertone, which allows the fragrant spices of the rich thick sauce to dance freely upon your tastebuds. Which is followed up with a subtle chile taste that diminishes the sweetness and prepares the palate for another mouthful. An excellent combination. And as per prediction, the chicken thigh is both moist and full of flavour. Another win for the dish, though I imagine you could shove yesterdays composte pile under the Mole rojo and it would taste equally as delectable. The Mole is topped, as per tradition, with toasted sesame seeds and side with a spiced carrot rice, which again helps the palate in contrast to the the rich sweetness of the sauce.

So that's where the beef and pork and beans and onion and banana and apple and pear and almond and acitron and cinnamon and tomato were hiding...
The Chile en Nogada is a lively and spectacular feat of culinary and Mexican excellence. Made for its colours of green (the chile poblano), white (the walnut cream), and red (fresh pomegranate kernels), to symbolise the country's national colours in pride of El Grito. The Chile en Nogada was originally made by the Madres Contemplatives Agustinas of the convent of Santa Monica in Puebla when the General Agustin visited the city after signing the treaty of independence. The nuns of the Santa Monica convent used their freshest ingredients, the walnuts and pomegranates, which both come into season at the end August, along with the best local chile, the poblano, to concoct a dish worthy of the general and symbolic of the newly obtained independence.

The Poblano chile, is grilled and peeled, and in the case of Chile en Nogada, it is mild in taste and only the very largest and best shaped chiles are selected. Once they are ready, one or sometimes two, depending again on the size factor, are stuffed to the brim, to near explosion actually. This magical stuffing consists of nearly 50 ingredients. The cornerstones of this mix being beef and pork mince with three types of beans, onion, banana, apple, pear, almond, acitron, cinnamon and tomato. The result is a very sweet, rich and fragrant taste which is complimented brilliantly by the walnut cream and the garlic infused rice (an invention from Chef Adalberto). The walnut sauce, is a simple yet rich sauce that has a slight french injection to it, again courtesy of Chef Adalberto. Made from Nuez de Castilla (Mexican walnuts, which obtain a slightly different taste from your ordinary everyday walnut), fresh sheep milk cheese, milk, cream and a good splash of brandy, gives the sauce exactly the richness it needs.The pomegranate providing a bit of bitterness and texture to the dish. Without the pomegranate the dish would be lacking some much needed body and texture on the palate and is liberally distributed upon the plate. Otherwise it would be like eating a big old sloppy, meaty, creamy mess, not that there's anything wrong with that when it tastes like this one! The nicely shaped deep fried platano (banana), tops the plate in order to symbolise the Penacho, a native Aztec head dress, that you generally see older male natives wearing as they prepare for El Grito with traditional native smoke ceremonies and dances in the Zocalo. And of course rounding off the dish is a little mexican flag flying strong on top of the white covered mountain of stuffed chile Poblano. Cheesy? Yes. Patriotic and definitely Mexican? Yes.

The Penacho. I think i prefer the fried banana version personally.
They were definitely right, I eat only half of each dish, perhaps even less than half. Still the best meal I have had in D.F. Executive chef Adalberto Diaz Laredo comes out and discusses himself and each dish with me. The conversations takes some interesting twists and turns, diving into Mexican tradition, modern gastronomy, politics and even Iron Chef. Adalberto trained initially in Washington DC but came back before the completion of his culinary diploma and started working at La Poblanita when he was still 18. And now, at 28, has been the executive chef for the past six years. He has championed the best Chile en Nogada, according to, well, the planet. Yes, that's right, his Chile en Nogada received the prestigious, El Mejor Chile en Nogada del Mundo MR! Pretty, pretty, pretty impressive. He claims the secret to his success here at La Poblanita is from treating his kitchen 'like a therapuetic laboratory' in order to enhance the quality of these traditional classic dishes that La Poblanita has been serving since opening in 1947, some 37 years before Adalberto's birth.
The all important Dried Ancho Chile and Chile Poblano, spot the differences?

He tells me the secret which sets his mole apart from the Jose-blo junk you might get elsewhere. The mole chillies are picked and cut and dried from fresh right on the very farm where he gets them from. It creates a more divided taste in the dish. First the sweet of sugar and chocolate, next the palate pleasing taste of 57 different herbs and spices that make up the rich taste of the mole, then followed by the spiciness of these specially picked and dried chillies to finish the palate. 'It's a taste you dont ordinarily get from your average mole because they buy the cheap dried chillies from the stalls at the mercad.' Adalberto claims. And his claim is the truth! All you have to do is order Mole rojo elsewhere and it will start sweet and end sweet on the tongue.
The Biznaga Cactus,  its pulp along with sugar syrup makes the Acitron block below.
The Acitron, is one of the most interesting ingredients in the Chile en Nogada. At first taste, I thought it to be pineapple which had been either soaked in sugar or half candied, then stewed with the meat mixture and taken on a bit of its flavour. It has a very distinct taste and texture, and is necessary in the dish, again to keep it from being too goopy and sloppy (in conjunct with the pomegranate). Adalberto explains that Acitron is becoming subject to a bit of controversy in Mexico. It seems that it is slowly becoming extinct. And less and less people are farming the Biznaga Cactus (the pulp from which Acitron is made), it in its native Oaxaca region. Because of this it has been considered an endangered species according to State laws and is now illegal to take or destroy wild Biznaga Cacti. The result, it is increasingly becoming harder to source for chefs and bakers. So perhaps the Chile en Nogada, in its traditional taste and form will not be around for future generations. And for Mexico, whose people are so steeped in tradition and pride of country, this would truly be a loss.

Thursday, 11 October 2012

Searching for the BEST! : Chile en Nogada

 Hustle Bustle upon the Zocalo (main square) in Centro Historico D.F.
I was at Opera Bar, minding my own business, sipping on an ice cold Bohemia Obscura. It had been an afternoon of the regular meandering and eating whatever looked tastiest lining the street corner in Mexico City's Centro Historico. I had slipped in to avoid another tempting museum gathering, there are more museums than buildings in this area, even when its not a museum the restuarants will have hand painted murals and brilliant collections by Orozco, Riveria, Khalo, and other usual suspects of Mexican art decadence, it is both brilliant and hard to escape, sometimes your eyes simply need to stare at something less cataclysmic, like a Purell dispenser tacked to the wall of the entrance of one of the oldest and most heralded establishments in DF.

Keepin' it clean...handy location by the entrance/exit
So there I was, trying not to make eye contact with the fellow anglophiles sitting on the barstools across from me. But alas, one of them goes off to the facilities, and the other strikes up conversation. He is a Japanese businessman of some important sort, and the other guy, I find, is his interpretor for his few days here in DF. He craps on about his high up architectural position in a prestigious Paris firm and how he is here on important business, his firm lining up plans for new buildings all over Mexico City. His interpretor comes back, like so many Mexicans you meet, he is always willing to listen and provide help in any way. I tell him how much i am enjoying the street food all over the markets and stations and where ever you seem to be, there is some one cooking up something, from fresh fried potato crisps, blue corn quesadillas, el pastor tacos, tortas, tomales, chillified candies, everything imaginable, well, except salads... you can't find a good quality salad without going in search of one.

Miguel (the Mexican translator), tells me that if I'm interested in food, I have come at the perfect time for the Mexican National Dish, Chile en Nogada, which is only available seasonally from the end of August until the beginning of October. Like many locals here in DF, their willingness to help you and show you the best that this city has to offer travels through miguels viens heavily. He is immediately on his iphone, searching for me. what for, I dont know exactly. Then he is excusing himself from his Japanese counterpart, getting on the phone with one of his friends. He tells me that he is finding out where the best Chile en Nogada in the city is.  I am trapped for a few minutes, furthering my knowledge of how great it is to be an architect in Paris and how tomorrow morning some poor bastard will be sitting beside this Japanese guy in first class all the way back to Paris, his knowledge will be far more extensive than mine in the field of how important this fucking guy is. He will be a professor in the field, perhaps earning his PhD before the plane lands safely at Charles de Gualle. Not to worry, Miguel is back, asking for use of my moleskin and pen. He quickly goes to work, writing it all down for me as it is being dictated to him over the phone: 'chile en nogada...independence day...el grito...la poblanita...colonia san miguel chapultepec...'

Miguel, hard at work on his iphone, Bohemia lookin' good!
The architect seemingly not liking the attention being paid to me from Miguel, slides his beer aside, takes his blazer in hand and heads for the door, Miguel wanting to discuss further details with me, has to cut himself short. "What-a-dick" I murmur to myself quietly as they descend out into the street. They leave the door wide open, and sailing in comes the sounds of a Beatles cover band playing across the corner of the cobble street. I laugh and think about how yesterday when I wandered past there was a trio playing Doors covers, now today Beatles, what's for tomorrow? Hopefully a four piece Zeppelin.

I drown myself in a few more of these Bohemia Obscuras. At 5.5%, they go down dangerously smooth, i accompany it with some papas a la francesa (the cheapest option in almost any drinking establishment, though you will have to ask for it, it is unlikely to appear on the menu...) Opera Bar is not the place to come to for a few cheap ones, its has a much more relaxed, regality to it, like something expertly hacked right out of Champs Elysees and placed amongst slowly sinking and crumbling buildings. The decor, highly Francophonic as well. It makes sense that Miguel took his Nipponese Parisian here. But at 37 Pesos ($2.80US) per Bohemia, you are paying for your surroundings and the cordial barman in his suit and bow tie.

quite the francophonic interior

The house Mariachi band comes out of the woodworks. I cease scribbling in my moleskin. Sink back the remainder of my Bohemia, pay the cordial man, and head for the door. First getting a good squeeze of that Purrell. And off i get, to find the best Chile en Nogada in DF. Little did i know it would be even better than that!

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Relevant music post!

 by Kai Rai (1961 Brite Star Records #2267 Minneapolis, Minn. USA)

Wednesday, 26 September 2012

Spicy L.A-over...

Los Angeles. Nothing to report here...all is a little too safe...all is a little too unclean...even on the clearest of clear evenings.

As it almost always is whenever I arrive for a stop over in Los Angeles, the outskirts of the city are a-light with flames. Yes L.A. is burning again. I decide that my one afternoon and night in Los Angeles should be fittingly lit up as well.
I check into my airport hotel, the four points by Sheraton lax, a mid level hotel, not too much but certainly not a rotten suburban druggie slum like last time (holiday inn Inglewood, thanks powers that be for that one!). Upon check in, I cab it to Venice beach, to my favourite dive sports bar right on the boardwalk, Danny’s, always good for a few beers and a quality certified angus beef pastrami sandwich, cant be beat! And it's only a stones throw to the Venice Skate Park!

I meet two friends, both Czech immigrants to the US, both hockey and beer nuts, we whisk the afternoon away, them talking about the triumph of the kings a few months back and how they still play roller hockey against Lucky Luc. I tell them I’m staying at the four points Sheraton lax, they quickly murmur to one another in mother tongue, and come to the conclusion that we should all go there, they have a bar there that serves the best selection of local beers in all of California and a premium Belgian selection too. We jump in a cab and head back through marina del ray across to lax.

The bar, we find, is called Brewster’s, how fitting...like naming a steakhouse, rancher's, or a vegetarian restaurant, gardener's. 

First up, is an extensive beer menu, covering over 100 bottled brews. Including locally crafted beers from all over California. Some from as close as el Segundo, a mere few miles from lax. Also thrown into the mix are some west coast beers from Oregon and Washington State. And, just to show that they can compete with the big boys, there is a liberal helping of craft and traditional beers from all over the planet, including Canada, Mexico, Germany, Ireland, United Kingdom, and a generous amount of bottled Belgian delights. 

i done got me the THIRST!

Beyond this, there is a tap menu including 10 exquisite tap beers. We all try the pescadero pilsner from the Ballast point brewing co. (4.6%, 16oz (1pint) for 7usd)

Only North Coast Brewing's Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout on nitro stays put on the tap menu

The dinner menu does not really surprise, as it is still a hotel bar, they cannot venture too far away from the standards: steak and chips, hamburgers, simple pastas, quesadillas, etc... What they do though is match beers to the menu's stereotypical fare. An excellent concept to keep everyone drinking and eating, even if the food seems a bit dull and expectant at first glance.

One menu item catches my eye, the 'I dare you' hot wings. A combination of jalapeƱo, Habanero and Serrano chilies, concocted into a smooth sauce with lime juice, spices and a pinch of salt and sugar. To eat one pound of these wings in less than two minutes, you receive fifty percent off your entire tables bill. At first I think that maybe I have drunk far too much quality whiskey and taken too many huffs upon Cuban purritos in the afternoon in Venice to make a valid attempt, but with a little bit of old fashioned Czech banter (ie: calling me a fucking pussy for ten straight minutes) and a great deal of beer courage, I decide to order them.

At first the young Hispanic waitress tries to deter me, saying I should have the regular wings, they are much better for 'you' (wow! racial profiling! like a white man can handle the Mexican heat). I tell her no, that I will be going for the 'I dare you' two-minute challenge. She kinda laughs, 'well, I suggest that you have a blue house citra pale ale to match the hot sauce.' The citra pale ale is from the el Segundo brewery. It’s the best beer to calm down the intense chilified flavour (5.5%, 7usd/pint). The blue house is light and fruity with hints of lemon peel and orange, with a hoppy finish, yet seems to leave the pallet feeling rather fresh. They know what they are talkin' bout...

The wings appear before me, absolutely smothered in the beaming vibrant orange sauce. You can feel the scolville scales breaking as your mouth and eyes begin to water simultaneously. I have a moment of silence before the clock begins. My Czechs full of laughter and shitty attempts at moral support. 

Habanero (rate 200,00 to 350,000 on the Scoville scale) Serrano (rate 8,000 to 23,000 on the Scoville) and Jalapeno (a laughable 2,500 to 8,000) Saucy!!!

The clock starts, I dive in!

The first wing goes down a spicy treat, I grab another one instantly after putting the down the first meatless bone. 'Shit! Its a builder!' I look at my Czechs, as they laugh uncontrollably, telling my, 'ay, c'mon day-veed, hurry facker, hurry the fack man!' Suddenly my lips are on fire, as I mulch into the second wing, my entire pallet going up in flames, but it tastes damned good besides the immense heat. 'Hot as fuck but tasty' I say to the waitress and she stands non-chalantly watching the clock, obviously this is nothing new to her, a drunkard attempting to burn his stomach out for a few bucks off the bill. After the second and third and fourth, I am getting rather teary eyed and I can feel my body beginning to sweat in its regular sweaty places. 'Sweet Christ!' one minute left and I’m half done, I drink a bit of the watery blue cheese dressing and gun in for the remaining four wings. I make it with four seconds left to spare. The Czechs are pleased, I am dying, the beer, doesn’t seem to be helping in any way, my lips burning, my tongue continuing to get hotter and hotter. I’m laughing and crying. A good sign, I think. I feel a ball of fire coagulating in my stomach, engulfing everything it touches. Its odd and a little painful and secretly pleasing.

The waitress, gathers the two bartenders, tells them I did it, then wanders off to the kitchen pass, and starts blathering in Spanish to the chefs, who all come out and are smiling at our table. I feel kinda important for some reason, but mostly I feel like I’m getting in touch with my Jewish heritage, getting half off the entire bill. 

Soon the main bartender and one of the young Hispanic chefs come over to the table and discuss the quality of the sauce with me and congratulate me on my efforts. 

We all have a few more beers, me sticking with the Blue House citra pale ale, hoping it will take the heat away. Then we split the house cubano sandwich (roast turkey, bacon, ham, pastrami, napa cabbage, pickled jalapeƱos, Monterrey cheese, chipotle sauce and lime mayo). In American fashion, the sandwich weighs roughly a kilogram. And the bun aint very big! It comes with a giant pile of spiced potato wedges. Just to be a hero I ask for a side of the ‘I dare you’ sauce to go with the wedges, just to make sure the Czechs still think I’m crazy after all these years.

I finish the night with my favourite Canadian beer from my favourite Canadian brewing company, a trios pistoles (9%, 341ml 9.5USD).  

The next morning the burning pit in my stomach is faint yet noticeable, I check out and head over to lax, off to my next destination, ready for any heat that can be thrown my way (good thing too, 'cause I'm headed here).

And hey! if you are lucky enough, be there on the third wednesday of every month, when they do free tastings! plan your L.A. layovers accordingly!

Sunday, 26 August 2012

Wellington On A Plate When It's Really Late

In a protoplasmic attempt at food writing, i originally sold a certain hipster american foodie print juggernaut on this story, but i went stale or they went fresh, so i shat the bed one night and decided to go rogue. i draped my inspectors cape upon my hunched shoulders and began this speil in the glow of the midnight rain of a wellington monday morning...

You will not recognise this place when the daylight evaporates...

Food food food (i'm gesticulating, trying to force something outta the pate part of my brain)

It's 4:47am, our options for drinking any further are becoming compromised to only a selection of the best (worst?) that courtney place has to offer. Yes, the golden mile! The golden mile shouldn't need introduction to locals, but for those not privy to its fantasticalness, try this for the goods.  We started here, as we always do, then onwards on any given Thursday or Friday or Saturday night, there may well be a little bit of this or this, we're usually good for a jug or two here, and then wander onto the beaten track for a few quality ones here and if things are looking a little faded or confused and desperate, this might happen, where i have been told time and time again; 'don't touch the lights!' There are others too, but forget them all. They are merely brief stops before the final destination. no, i dont mean the puke filled gutter that is Inglewood place. or some diseased whore plantation. or a soft pair of thighs. or the comfort of your own cookie crumb filled sheets. I refer to the one and only late night authentic chinese haven that is KC Cafe. Wellington's only credible late late night dining spot.

A regular site for late night Courtney Place: Former colleagues being arrested outside night clubs...

For a city who's closest chinatown is a three hour and twenty minute flight away, life can become difficult for those who need that late night fix to clot up all the beer and rum and whiskey and egg whites and hendricks soaked cucumber before the next morning rises and reality, that cruel bitch, kneads back in yet again. KC Cafe is the only option for those of us that 'pffft' at the thought of a saw dust laden big mac or vaguely consider a quintuple cheeseburger with a giant battered onion ring on top, but then plummet back to the realisation that burger king stopped doing that sorta thing a long time ago now. for those that are brave enough, there are some bai-marie's at a chicken chop shop just down the road from KC. that could leave you a bit worse for ware than the seven rum shots and absinthe redbull that will be caving your head in the following sun up. TRUST ME.

KC does authentic Northern Chinese Cuisine, with a sporadic mix of Chinese and Malaysian Classics throughout the billboard sized menu that goes from floor to ceiling. You can order anything from the salt and pepper duck heads, to sambal whole king prawns, to chili pork, to, decidedly the go-to dish, braised beef brisket with noodles.  
That bottle of red powerade is now famous in some small wellington circles... and the asian youths are always frolicking around, flaunting that late night sobriety.
I have never been to KC before two am, in fact it doesn't begin to start flooding with customers until around this time. it can be dosed with a line snaking its way through the front tables back towards the entrance at two am. It's better to keep it in mind and stay for a few more drinks wherever you may be, hold out til around four am or after. You will almost guarantee yourself an all desired booth to sit in and the food will come out a lot faster. By this time the chefs are usually taking a rotating beer break in one of the booths while the young children (seriously, like 14 years old! but good with the maths!) that take the orders, are gearing up to close down for the night. You know these cooks are doing this for the love the food. They sure as hell cannot be doing it for the money, their is way too many of them working back there for that. And it is by all means not for all the drunken savages marauding around the restaurant, puking in the women's bathroom, spraying powerade onto the walls and ceilings (oops! sorry KC...), making a downright atrocity of the idea of table manners, yelling, screaming, falling over...the communication breakdowns while ordering at the front counter are uncanny. These young kids working the til couldn't understand you at the best of times, never mind being bacchic and slurring words and changing your mind, while another pixelated mate barking more words at you to convey to them and three people trying to order at once while another one of your mates is trying to clear a table himself making a bigger stupified mess and the whole time that is going on, the really pissed-as mate holding onto your shoulder to stay unbent, keeps repeating to you, 'ask for extra chili on the side, but not just the chili they usually give you but also the red chili sauce too and fresh chili too, don't forget that.' so you see, the breakdown here is on us, not them. Bless 'em. But once that order is placed and paid for, you are in the clear, find that booth seat,  and they will find you with the goods soon.

Once the food arrives, it will be plowed down and devoured like the fantastic mr. fox's we all are. the long distance trip that is dish to chopsticks to mouth can be quite the shit fight. The table slowly turns into an omaha beach aftermath, with many, many valued capsicums, onions, noodles, greens being left behind, in the battle against drunken hunger. It looks a little like this:

Then comes that part of the night when its all over. The elderly chinese man with his red bucket comes along to wipe the linoleum clean of the savagery just bespoke upon it. You feeling a bit more sober, have a good look at the old man and his task and look around the table to see everyone holding in their laughter or shame as frantically as a mouse on the run. 
holding the laughter...not an easy task at this stage of the evening
Cabs are hailed, long walks strutted, mopeds are turned over, the morning comes and there is a brand new sense of freedom for the next evening. Thank You KC Cafe! It's not an easy job carrying the weight of Wellington's late night food upon your shoulders.