Sunday, March 20, 2016

The Game's Afood - Vernal Geekquinox 2016

Geekquinox is the name for our friend Pete's biannual dinner party, commemorating the two days every year that have equal amounts of darkness and light. It's become a real highlight of the year for all of us attendees, and looking at the amount of creativity and preparation Pete brings to the menu alone makes it fairly obvious why.

In addition to pushing the envelope of his culinary skills with new techniques like sous vide, or exotic dishes like kofta (a type of meat loaf common to an astonishingly wide range of places), Pete brings his considerable creative prowess into play by crafting the menus around a strong theme. This year's theme was 'games' which is appropriate since that seems to be the common thread that brought, and keeps bringing, us together.

Some of the gaming links were admittedly tenuous, but the highlight for me were the icosahedronical cakes made to look like the 20-sided dice so ubiquitous to nerdy gaming. Ellen's daughter Elizabeth put a day's work into aiding Pete with his preparations, including icing said cakes, and displayed tremendous focus and perseverance in doing so.

Watching Pete bring new tastes and technology into his dining machinations is always a treat, from the immense scale of his roast beast... the sous vide controller he used to prepare the carrots... the sartorial choices he makes in his safety equipment...

...Pete brings a sublime blend of ingenuity, hospitality and gourmanderie to his dinner parties. But, as hard as it might be to believe, the dining, as good as it is, is probably less half the appeal of Geekquinox, at least to me.

The people though, continue to amaze and delight, and this time, Island Mike and Kelly were able to come out from Vancouver Island to join us. Being no strangers to epicurean delights and tremendous sushi fans, they greatly enjoyed the Hamachi shots (as did we all, even those who aren't necessarily fans of sushi!), among other things.

Even more, it was a chance to talk about, well, everything, from movies to parenting to the challenges in our respective workplaces.

And perhaps have a sampling or two from Pete's cellar.

Pete has been doing these crazy shindigs for 5 or 6 years now, and like the wine he serves, they seem to keep getting better with age. Or maybe it's us? At any rate, I can't describe the evening as inimitable, because I know 6 months from now, Pete will likely have outdone himself again. I will content myself by expressing how grateful we all are to have a friend so dedicated in spoiling us as thoroughly as he does, all in the name of friendship!


A lovely group photo, courtesy of Earl J.Woods and The Earliad.

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