Thursday, August 28, 2008

The Curious Pot

So after rolling some kayaks and fighting the Lake Washington chop, the Lovely Bride and I came back to the house, napped, and went to Anthony’s Pier 66 for dinner. I really like Anthony’s – it's got a good view of the north end of Eliot Bay and a great menu, particularly its fish (of course). The food was wonderful and the service was excellent, at least until the waiter got slammed by an eight-top that rolled in right next to us.

That happened late in the meal, when I ordered hot tea and the LB a sorbet (note to all restaurants – You DO have a sizable percentage of customers with egg allergies – if you put more than just sorbet on the menu that the LB can eat, she will visit you more often). Anyway, the waiter dropped this curious plastic pot of tea in front of me and had to dash off to another emergency.

I picked up the pot, and noted that there was no spout. Indeed, the top looked flush with the rest of the pot, and the leaves themselves were steeping in a swirling mixture that looked like parts of Lake Washington that I has just paddled through. No tea ball, no visible strainer. But for the life of me I couldn’t figure out how to get the tea OUT of the pot and INTO my cup.

A younger me would try experimentation, but I had just gotten my linen suit BACK from the cleaners, thank you. I instead chose to flag down another waiter and say “OK, you got me. What’s the secret?”

The small plastic pot slips OVER the mug of tea, the base acting like a cover to the cup. The tea comes out of the base of the pot, which is opened by the lip of the mug pressing upwards. That way the tea steeps faster (being loose), but drains fully through the leaves without leaving any dregs in the cup.

Ingenious, but a death trap for anyone who didn’t know the trick. I congratulated myself on my wisdom in asking for help, and wondered where that wisdom had been earlier in the day when I had rolled the kayak, repeatedly.

The meal itself was wonderful – LB had the flounder, I had the sturgeon, and the crab/corn chowder was great. But I can’t help but think of my many other meals there have been endangered by the new technology of the curious teapot.

More later,