Today is National Roast Pheasant Day. Yes, it’s a little random, but at least it’s seasonally appropriate.
Today is also Emeril’s 50th birthday! Last week, while we were in New Orleans for my brother’s wedding, we drove past Commander’s Palace, in all its turquoise and white glory. I didn’t have a chance to actually eat their, but my Uncle Larry did, and he described it as amazing from start to finish – both food and service. For all Emeril’s cheesiness, I’ve always heard that he’s a fantastic chef and runs a tight kitchen. He was also instrumental in the rebuilding of New Orleans’ food scene in the aftermath of Katrina, and I know the residents of the city love him for that. Happy birthday, Emeril!
In sadder news, today is also the 13th annniversary of the death of Pierre Franey, the chef of NYC’s institution Le Pavillon and Craig Claiborne’s collaborator on the NYT column “The 60 Minute Gourmet.” Franey was a key figure in the emergence of French fine dining in New York in the years following World War II – a cultural trend that helped define mid-century cuisine and values.
And finally, today in 1988, UB40’s “Red, Red Wine” hit number one. I was in eighth grade. Those were the days (kind of).
So how to celebrate? French wine and cajun-spiced pheasant, of course.