It isn’t often I feel even remotely qualified to weigh in upon the subject of gastronomy. There are endless magazines, television shows and scientific reports which seem adequately to address every possible element of what constitutes not only the practice or art of cooking but also of choosing or eating good food. Though I have a limited but satisfying repertoire of recipes, it would constitute a misrepresentation to say I am a cook. First and foremost I don’t actually read recipes. Second, I am a robust chopper – meaning, I chop with as little effort as possible to secure bite-size pieces. Third, when it comes to eating, by far and away my favourite meal of the day is breakfast.
At boarding school we rallied in the dining room of the “Great Hall” three times a day, punctually. I suspect – though I don’t honestly recollect – that we had thriving appetites. What does linger however is the habit of having breakfast at the same time every day. That custom – along with a fairly broad measure of other private school graduates – continued effortlessly at Glendon Hall where I studied Philosophy and boarded. By the time I got to law school – and reduced my accommodation to shared quarters in Domus Legis on Seymour Street – the practice of eating breakfast was fully engrained and has never subsequently been altered.
The convention did however assume another dimension when I began practicing law in the Town of Almonte. It must have been by luck – or, what is more likely, by having gone out for breakfast to recover from a hangover – that I discovered the small-town routine of local businessmen congregating at the Main Street restaurant for early morning coffee and breakfast. Once bitten by the indulgence I found myself returning every day of the week, always seated at the same table, served by the same staff, eating the same food. The communication continued for another thirty years until I had open-heart surgery. Nonetheless I privately propelled the habit at home during my convalescence and thereafter.
It wasn’t until I had retired that I reignited the privilege of going out for breakfast by frequenting the golf club in the Village of Appleton. Thankfully it has not descended to a daily habit since I’m quite certain my arteries couldn’t bear the affect. As you might imagine I exhaust my liberties when dining out by having precisely what I want. In the instance of breakfast that invariably includes eggs, bacon and sausage. Today however for the second time in as many weeks I’ve reassembled my matutinal gratification by adding two pancakes, butter and maple syrup.
At the golf club we have the decided advantage of dining on the patio overlooking the first tee. The even more stimulating advantage is to partake of the culinary artistry of Chef Wendy MacDonald who has operated as the club’s in-house caterer for many, many years. I simply cannot give an adequate commendation of Wendy’s productions. It was for example all I could do today to discourage myself from licking the plate! There is nothing, positively nothing, which surpasses the elixir that is pancakes, butter, maple syrup and bacon! Nor is there any bacon more superb than that from Wendy’s kitchen! Perfectly crisp and sufficiently blessed with crystallized drippings from the pan!