I just survived Seattle’s hottest week on record. The temperatures soared over 90 degrees F. most days and the nights were stifling. Most homes and buses do not have air conditioning.
Nonetheless, it was a welcome break from the dreary summer Boston has served up this year. Seattle’s seemingly infinite waterfronts were all the more inviting and I found myself on several different boat rides. Plus, the heat provided an excuse every day for ice cream and iced mochas. And a paper sack of in-season Rainier cherries were a perfect treat after an hour-and-a-half soak in the chilly waters of Snoqualmie Falls.
I reviewed Molly’s wonderful book “A Homemade Life” for the Monitor and have been following the restaurant’s progress on her blog. Delancey is scheduled to open on Aug. 12. Leading up to the Big Day, Delancey is holding “soft opening dinners” for a select number of customers to help them prepare. (Brandon also Twitters if you want to follow the perils of pizza dough that won’t rise in a heat wave or cooks who don’t show up.)
So I thought we could just drop by on a blistering hot afternoon to peer in the windows and maybe take a photo or two. To our delight, Molly, Brandon, her mother, and their dog Jack were flitting around in the unmarked, sweltering restaurant as a brick-oven fire cheerfully blazed behind the bar. They were preparing dinner for 30 people that night.
Molly graciously greeted us despite the obvious perspiration marching across her brow, and remarked “It’s a great week to open a wood-fired pizza restaurant, isn’t it?” Molly said she had laid a thermometer on the floor the other day and took a reading of 80 degrees F. That’s 80 degrees on the floor!!
She declined when I asked if I could take her photo, saying she felt wilted by the heat. So I took a picture of Jack. And her shoes.
I have no doubt the restaurant will be a success with its devoted following on Orangette, Twitter, and even Facebook. Molly expressed some worry about being ready and her mom chimed in with calm wisdom that it is better to open and have crowds than to open and have empty tables.
Starting from abundance is always a good place to be.
Our stay was brief, seeing that the little crew was busy and a tad anxious about that night’s performance, Kerste says she’ll go back once Delancey is open – with her bookclub in tow, of course.
I may just have to fly back out to Seattle to join them.
Cooking tip: To beat the heat, freeze some grapes and enjoy a deliciously cool summer snack.