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Friday, August 1, 2008

Fish turns 8, Jodie's big adventure & cocktails in Tokyo

So much happening I scarcely know where to begin! First of all, today is Fish's 8th anniversary. Over the past 8 years, there has been some kind of celebration/shindig to mark the occasion, but of course, this year is a tad different, what with the renovation and expansion. Interestingly enough, the number 8 has great meaning: in Christianity, 8 represents rebirth and resurrection because Christ rose from grave 8 days after entering Jerusalem. In Hinduism, 8 is the number of wealth and prosperity. The 8 Immortals are Chinese deities and in Islam, 8 is the number of angels carrying The Holy Throne of Allah in heaven. In Buddhism, 8 is also an auspicious number for Buddhists, as in the 'eight auspicious symbols. Basically, 8 is great all over the place.

And, not to get too touchy feely on you, but it helps to have the universe behind you, as well as the support of our many families, friends, colleagues and clients.

In Big Apple news, Fish General Manager Jodie Battles has landed on her feet after a rather hilarious (well to us) and harrowing first day. As I mentioned, the hotel booked for her was condemned. So, those folks sent her to a second hotel that was, how shall we say, worse than condemned? (Note to self: if Randall offers to book you a trip, may I recommend respectfully declining? I mean, unless you like rubble. Your choice.) But, what a difference a day and the unflappable Jodie make! Take a look at her email:

Long story short, after walking/cabbing the streets of Manhattan with my luggage in tow for...mmm...about 6 hours, the amazing Elizabeth (Director of HR) miraculously got me into a room at the W New York...and it's fabulous! I begin working at Craft tonight...I am meeting the Director of Operations, Richard Breitkreutz this afternoon, will then be joining the entire FOH and BOH staff for their pre-shift family meal (love that they do this), and will shadow Richard on the floor and observe in the kitchen throughout dinner service. To say I'm excited doesn't begin to do justice! Pics to come!

Read a great article in the new Bon Appetit (fantastic graphic design) highlighting Tokyo as the cocktail capital of the world. (P.S. How does one get the gig to go boozing all over Tokyo and then write about it?) The article likens the attention to detail and reverence for the process/ceremony and ingredients to that of the Japanese tea ceremony. Well, isn't that just the coolest thing? Honestly, that's the thing that I believe makes the difference no matter what you're doing: cooking food, making cocktails, growing vegetables, writing copy or fashioning a 25 and a half foot bar (we measured it this week). It's the passion for and the reverence and respect of the thing you're doing that makes it exceptional. It's the energy that infuses it, and quite simply, people feel that. And, in the best cases, it resonates and creates its own story. A story that folks want to tell again and again.

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