Caramelized sugar wafting through the air, a melody simply written…
In reading the Dec issue of Vogue I was struck by the simple homage Anna Wintour paid to the life of Oscar de la Renta who died this fall after an illustrious 50+year design career.
What most impressed me was the gracious form Mr. de la Renta always used in thanking the very fortunate people to wear his elegant clothing. He always said, “Thank you for wearing my dress.”
Grace as an aspect of business feels rare to me, and I believe it should be more common. After all, each purchase a customer or client or guest makes implicitly conveys a measure of trust in the service or product of the business person. Reason enough to be thankful and to say so.
The simple act of doing well what one loves doing and then being gracious enough to thank the person receiving it speaks to an internal and self-sustained honor.
These recent weeks in the kitchen at OCI have been full to the brim of hard and tiring work. New skills sets, new energies, new creations. The work could also be described as joyful.
Pastry cream fruit tarts, berry and fruit pies, Frangipane tarts, cannoli, brownies, baguette, butter braids, corn muffins, hazelnut biscotti, lemon pound cake, bagels, pretzels, pizza, beignets, chocolate cookies, coconut macaroons, crepes, cream pies, focaccia, caramel nut tarts, artisan breads, quiche, shortbread and strudel.
It all came home, and I realized quickly that there was an opportunity to share the joy I experienced in creating it. So, pies went to the staff of Neighborhood House in Multnomah Village and tarts went to the staff of a senior living center and to the baristas at my local Starbucks. Treats of every variety went to my son in Montana.
The pleasure in giving is made all the more concrete by thanking the person to whom the gift is given.
“Thank you for wearing my dress.” That’s a legacy I’d like to honor in this and every season.
On the Topic of Eccentricities
On March 24, 2021
In Confection Commentary
Yesterday, the word “eccentricities” found its way into a conversation among a group of very dear and insightful women. We marveled at how mature relationships have a profoundly different resonance than those early experiments of our youth.
One person’s perceived eccentricities are another person’s charm or brilliance – her je ne sais quoi – elusive qualities that are not easily named.
Pleasing, somewhat undefinable qualities not only endear us to others; they enhance our lives when we sample things of unexpected quality. Several years ago, I tasted a product new to the Portland food market. The company, Cocacao, blends cacao, coconut nectar and coconut oil into a silky treat that is further enhanced with nuts, spices and fruit. It was a revelation that lingers in my memory.
Essential Confection empowers our customers to gift that special ‘eccentricity’ – that unexpected quality – to their recipients.
Of cacao’s munificence,
a brush stroke of coconut
paints ecstasy into being.
Oh, sweet virtue!
Whose eccentric qualities enliven your life?