This morning on Twitter someone posted these questions: “Are restaurant critics, still anonymous? Does anyone know what they look like? ” I have a fairly strong opinion about this for a number of reasons: 1) I personally am not a restaurant critic nor would I ever want to be, because just the title depicts a nit-picking personality. I do not live life this way-I try to see the good in everybody and in everything (I am otherwise known as Polyanna). 2) I believe that the time of validity for a restaurant reviewer is passe. In today’s cyber-world where we recognize strangers from their avatars, anonymity is a thing of the past and 3) I believe that liking or disliking something comes from a different place, in all of us.
An example of the latter point is this: I make all decisions about preference on a purely emotional basis. I like a novel when I am happy and surrounded by my favourite things, while I am reading it. I like certain artistic works because they evoke a positive emotion or memory for me. I like movies that have happy endings because I like to be happy myself! And so too with food. I like a restaurant because of the entire package, perhaps because of little things that others might never notice.
This preamble is to explain why I love Segovia to such an extent (even though I have only dined there a small handful of times). These are my emotional reasons: 1) it uses natural elements in its decor like bleached driftwood that reminds me of my favourite place to walk at the beach 2) I used to work in the building next door to it and so I was interested in the assembly of it, even before I knew what it was going to be. 3) I especially enjoy a tapas style of menu because this is typically the manner in which my husband and I dine in the first place, with little tastes off of each others’ plates. Segovia (imho) brought tapas dining back into vogue in Winnipeg. 4) I know many customers when I dine at Segovia and it feels good to be surrounded by a warm community. 5) The servers at Segovia are particularly inclined towards my eldest daughter.
Daughter #1 is a person with a disability, as is her best friend. They manage their lives very independently with the use of motorized wheelchairs. Accommodating a single one of these machines in an intimate dining setting is not easy and because they often dine together, even more complicated. But the staff at Segovia embrace them in the most welcoming and gracious way. When we recently dined there with Daughter #1, they anticipated which beverage she would order and remembered what small plates she had chosen the time previous. Our server even went so far as to consult the other staff members for the best tattoo artist in Montreal, when they learned that she was interested in getting inked on her vacation.
“It takes a village to raise a child” is an understatement when you have reared a child with a disability. There is so must pleasure and satisfaction, when you see how the community at large respects and admires your special child. I believe that the servers at Segovia see past the big chairs of Daughter #1 and her friend and appreciate their intelligence, wit, savvy and beauty. This brings me much joy.
So, do you see? The food happens to be amazing, but Segovia means much more to me than this. But because this is a food blog, after all, I’ll report on our perfect visit in tommorrow’s post.
Kath’s quote: “With money anyone can offer succulent dishes and famous wines, but courtesy and kindness cannot be bought.”-Lucien Tendret
Love-that is all.