Thursday, June 17, 2010
Days of Decadence
Tonight, the catbird's doing a great cover of the cardinal's song, the woods are alive with late evening light, and this morning, as I was coming back up the rise from the my pond, I met a bull moose on his way down the creekbank. He was gone through Beeler's Woods before I could get to my iPhone. The combination of experiences reminds me that I haven't yet written about absinthe.
My decadent day in Portland - now a few weeks ago - started at the Salt Exchange with frogs legs ravioli on a bed of arugula and quinoa with candied garlic and balsamic vinegar. As if that were not enough, this was accompanied by the sounds of Gene Austin's 1928 hit My Blue Heaven and a Satchmo version of Mack the Knife.
From there I went to an opening at The Bar of Chocolate Cafe where Holly Gooch has assembled an exhibition of absinthe spoons. It's an intimate grouping in a display case, of exquisite contemporary examples of the tool one uses to drizzle water over a sugar cube into the absinthe in the glass. "Absinthe has a wonderful colour, green. A glass of Absinthe is a poetical as anything in the world. What difference is there between a glass of Absinthe and a sunset?" So said Oscar Wilde. The absinthe spoon made art history in a cubist sculpture by Picasso, made in Paris in the spring of 1914, in painted bronze with a perforated silver absinthe spoon. I have to add that the flower pots by William Merritt Chase in a painting now on exhibit at Colby College are so individually painted that they too are as poetical as a sunset and made me long for the good old days of painting as an art, not a conceptual exercise.
There's a good long run for the absinthe spoons at The Bar of Chocolate. They are up through New Year's Eve. My pond has lily pads. So does one of the spoons. Go see - and don't wait until December 31. Order an espresso martini? What?
Holly Gooch and Absinthe Spoons
The Bar of Chocolate, Wharf Street