Customers ask often how it is going for us here at Adama, and wouldn’t it be better to be somewhere (i.e., State Street) where there is more pedestrian traffic? And why don’t I advertise more? Of course we would have more business if Adama was run by 5 partners who could split up the projects and had the financial capabilities of promoting the restaurant until everyone knew about us. But it is just little ol’ me with no financial capability, so things progress slower at Adama. Nevertheless, they do progress.
To get what is in my mind successfully to your plate is something of an evolution. I listen to customer comments (not reviews, however, but that is for another blog), order different dishes off the menu for my own meals all the time, and tweak and modify until what is on your plate is what I envisioned in the first place. When a restaurant opens in a busy spot, odds are that even if the food is mediocre at best, it will do o.k. So there is not a whole lot of motivation to keep going back to each dish and making it as good as it could be. The money is coming in so why do the extra work. That is how I viewed the food in Venice, Italy. I found almost every meal to be discardable slop. I would have been content with a handmade pasta and a nice marinara. But I guess nobody cared because, after me, 10 million more unsuspecting one-time tourist customers would surely take my place. I adored Venice; it just wasn’t a foodie trip for me. I am sure that I will get some comments about the amazing food some of you ate in Venice, and I welcome them. I would love to go back and do it over. What I really want to do is spend the night in a sleeping bag in one of those mysterious empty buildings before they disintegrate and listen to the water lapping against the outside walls and just feel history. With a bowl of handmade pasta and marinara.
Well, here on Chapala, between Haley and Gutierrez, a few people might just happen upon us, but most of our customers have sought us out. And it is imperative that they have a memorable dining experience, because the only way that we grow is by word of mouth. This results in better food. It has to be good. It has to be. And I wouldn’t have it any other way, since the joy of this work is in serving you food that I am excited to place before you, and having you tell us excitedly how much you enjoyed it. I would rather be good than rich. So maybe one day when the food is everything I think it can be, I will think about moving and actually comfortably paying the bills. But not now. Really, though, I think that any location would be a let down after this amazing old building, you know?