Chow, Baby: Wednesday, September 26, 2002
A Forkfelt Tribute

Obeying the principles that rituals entail food and food entails desserts, Chow, Baby chose to observe the anniversary of 9/11 by eating cheesecake all day long. This decision was equal parts logic, love of cheesecake, and a wish to honor one of Chow, Baby’s late pals, a pastry chef at the World Trade Center’s Windows on the World restaurant who picked the wrong day to go to work early.

At Randall’s Gourmet Cheesecake in downtown Fort Worth, Chow, Baby was greeted by a sweaty guy in shorts (sob — René had hairy legs, too) who led the way into a dark, soothing cave filled with Ray Charles-style soulful blues. Chow, Baby’s pre-cheesecake stomach coating of chicken tarragon ($8.95) was marvelous: chunks of breast meat tossed in a not-too-mayonnaisey dressing with oodles of fresh herbs and sliced almonds, served with not-enough marinated tomato salad but plenty of fresh hot bread. Extra salad can be ordered for $3, but Chow, Baby was ready to move on to the main event: raising a dessert fork to the dead.

Perfect Waiter (gracious but not phony-friendly) pretended not to notice Chow, Baby’s tears as he delivered slice after $5 slice of creamy, rich sweetness: amaretto-infused, then blueberry-topped, then walnut-raspberry-filled. “What else you got?” hurried Chow, Baby, growing nauseated at the sight of sweaty hairy guy quad-stretching in such a way that things could fall out, à la the gym teacher in Scary Movie. But Chow, Baby can put up with overdone beefcake when the cheesecake is nearly as good as René’s was. (Sob.) Another slice, please.

Incredible, Edible

After its monthly East Lancaster drive-by to see if Pho 747 is open for business yet (nope), Chow, Baby took a random left turn to wind through the pretty streets of Meadowbrook. Suddenly, like a WB ad, here’s four quirkily attractive teenagers strolling down the street carrying little boxes. Band candy! Natch, Chow, Baby began digging for its wallet.

But as the kids came near, their packages focused into cartons of eggs. The spokesmodel explained that they were collecting money for their school, a go-go-Gospel academy near Tyler, and asked if it would be worth anything to Chow, Baby to watch them smash eggs on one another. Chow, Baby allowed as how this would be worth a great deal of money indeed. Emptying its wallet into the future missionaries’ hands, Chow, Baby joined in the albumin baptism.

So here’s Nicole, Anna, Nathan, Brandi, and Chow, Baby, standing in the middle of Scenery Hill Road smashing eggs on each other’s heads. Handfuls of gooey stuff, cute teenagers squirming — Chow, Baby could think of only one thing: French toast. Slightly sticky, Chow, Baby zoomed over to the homestylicious Paris Coffee Shop at W. Magnolia and Hemphill. If anybody makes a better egg-drenched Texas toast and nice crispy bacon ($4) served by warmly devoted waitresses, Chow, Baby wants to hear about it. If anybody makes a better egg custard pie ($2.25), Chow, Baby will be surprised. Eggs: They’re God’s gift.

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