Doctrines of infallibility are for popes and neocons, and need I say more? The rest of us lowly humans must make do with the doctrine of fallibility, a splendid coat of many colors. If you screw up in the kitchen, you add some mustard or vinegar — pancake makeup for defaced or deformed dishes — and hope for the best. Or phone out for emergency pizza. If you screw up in print ... well, there it is, as the tin-eared Emperor Joseph was wont to say in Amadeus. Errata have a way of accumuutf8g, like spatters on a chef's apron, until finally a laundering is in order. Herewith a selection of my own recent spatters. [Editor’s note: Also missed by Paul's hysterical-anorexic editor, Marke B.]
In my recent piece about Alamo Square Seafood Grill ("Sea Rations," 11/1/06), I wrongly dismissed trout as a responsible choice of fish. True, it is a farmed carnivore, but according to the endlessly useful Seafood Watch program of the Monterey Bay Aquarium (www.mbayaq.org/cr/seafoodwatch.asp), trout is rated in the "best" category. It efficiently converts feed into protein and is farmed in an enviro-friendly way.
In my piece about the Michelin guide's recent Northern California edition (Without Reservations, 10/11/06), I implied that the Michelin guide uses half stars. I do not know where I got this idea; perhaps there was confusion with other star-giving entities that do deal in half rations. Michelin gives full stars only — or not, as the case may be. Also, while there was considerable distress here as to the NorCal guide's emphases and omissions, it is worth reminding ourselves that we are probably not Michelin's principal audience; the green guides are largely for visiting French and other Europeans, so a skewing toward French restaurants with a certain formality of service shouldn't surprise us.
Most puzzling is my persistent delusion that Belden Place is either "Lane" or "Alley." In my recent piece on Café Claude ("Charm Latitudes," 10/11/06 — again!), I stumbled into "Lane." I also said that it is paved with bricks, because my memory insists that it is, but on a recent flyby I noticed only asphalt, though it is possible there are brick facades or perhaps bricks hugging the earth as foundations. I am relieved not to have described it as "cobblestoned," which I might have done in the past, though I hope not. Cobblestones would be nice.