Trimom and I scored a babysitter and went out to dinner last night at Nanakusa, one of our top three favorite places to eat in the United States. (The others are Trattoria Stefano in Sheboygan and Bern’s Steakhouse in Tampa. More on those in a future post.)
Nanakusa has unbelieveably creative kitchen dishes. Last night, for example, we had a special salmon roll; lightly seared thin-cut salmon wrapped around parmagiano reggiano cheese and asparagus and topped with a citrus marmalade. Beautiful. They had tempura-battered live soft-shell crab and an amazing crab rangoon roll that is so good it should be illegal.
Of course, they have amazing sushi and sashimi, too. Fatty tuna, powerful mackerel, buttery flounder and perfect salmon are just some of the highlights, and their sushi and sashimi menu is updated every day.
Most of the wait staff has been there for years, which is, in my opinion, one of the hallmarks of a good restaurant. Carlene, Kerstin, Michelle, Erica, Heather and Carrie have been around a long time, a few of them since I started going to Nanakusa seven years ago.
Richard, the owner, is also the patissier, and does great desserts; an espresso/chocolate/vanilla creme brulee trio, a chocolate coconut macadamia nut pie, and an amazing three-chocolate layered “terrine.”
Finally, the bar is manned ably by Jason, the kind of barkeep who starts chilling our martini glasses the minute we walk in the door, and who remembers our favorite drinks and how we like them.
This is, occasionally, a problem.
I have NOT been drinking alcohol much during training, and in the last month, I probably haven’t touched a drop. Until last night. We had to wait a few minutes for a table, so we sat at the bar. Jason asked, not “what would you like?” but “would you like a Vesper?” In a moment of weakness, I agreed. Three parts gin, one part vodka, splash of vermouth, shaken with a twist.
We sat at the bar with our drinks, and were presently shown to our table. Just after ordering appetizers, I realized I felt strange. Kind of woozy, light-headed, even a little flushed. I thought, “damn, I can’t be getting sick, can I?” Then my eyes wobbily scanned the table to my half-consumed martini. There was something relevant there, dammit, but I couldn’t figure out what it was. Then I realized; I was drunk.
Half a martini and I was in the bag. The formula worked something like this – (Zero alcohol consumed in 30 days plus Metabolism at elevated levels due to training = Fat Triathlete is a cheaper date than a novice nun).
Luckily, I kept my head (sort of) I didn’t do or say anything foolish (I think) and I didn’t order a second drink. I drank lots of water, but fell asleep a little worried about how I’d feel in the morning, especially because Trimom and I were planning on riding the bike course the next day.
To be continued…