lunch with adeline, lisa, and joanna in them ky. discussion becomes heated on the topic of stupidity insurance, but the table is creaking under the weight of dishes so we can only get mildly agitated. after lunch, we drive over to modern tea where the buttermilk pudding is transcendent as always. barnabas joins us. i don't know him, but he looks like an ibanker because he is one. it is margaret's belated birthday, so i head over afterwards with a bottle of homebrewed kombucha. i feel like i come home when i hang out with 81x, much like when i go down to 675. after, dinner at aziza with mary and phil -- julia is now in town and this means i get to meet mahni as well. a beautiful and carefully-considered menu. a drink of verbena-infused cachaca, spearmint, and chrysanthemum. a round bisteeya fragrant with rosewater and ground almonds. a tray of dips for amazing segments of grilled flatbreads dusted with zatar -- smoky eggplant, pomegranate-almond, yogurt-cucumber-dill. charred eggplant and lamb stew, with fried capers and garlic, sudaniya oil, a saffron sauce, and a tapenade-covered piece of toast. pistachio cardamom cake with stewed apricots and orange creme fraiche. we were talking about ethiopian food (possibly) and the subject of the bread arose. injera, which is the ethiopian bread, is made from a fermented batter of teff, in case you are tormented by not knowing. phil said, "i don't really like the sourness. i don't even really like sourdough." (this is lese majeste if you're from san francisco, since, here, sourdough is god. a strong, brown god.) i agree with phil: the best bread in many or even most situations is the sweet french or baguette.


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