Greetings from Carrboro,
By now, all the pretenders are done. Up and called it quits. All the fresh-faced, earnest souls who dutifully bought their tomato plants in April can only sit and wonder where it all went wrong. I remember that feeling. Was it the birds? The bugs? The deer? The rain? The sun? That weeklong vacation at Emerald Isle? It was probably, well, all of the above. And like that, April’s fantasy becomes July’s ennui. The terra cotta pots reverentially moved to the side of the house so the poor plants can die in peace.
In a similarly quixotic culinary vein, a friend of mine likes to fish. Or rather, he likes to spend good money and stand on a boat or a beach and complain about not catching fish. But that’s most of us. When I go with him, we always pack pork chops in a cooler in case we strike out. You know, just in case. I don’t think that we’ve ever brought a pork chop back. His wife keeps a running tally of the actual cost per pound of the fish that ever makes it back to Carrboro. Essentially travel+food+lodging+whatever divided by the pounds of fish caught over the years. At this point, he needs to reel in a mature blue whale to ever hope of getting that number down to something you could discuss in polite company. And she doesn’t even know about the bourbon.
So when I think about that, it feels like a bit of a miracle every time that a plate comes out of the kitchen. With food on it. Because – let’s be real – this whole hunter-gather-y thing isn’t a walk in the park. I know that there are chefs that have farms. Even more that hunt and fish. And I’ve seen the bucolic pictures of said chefs drinking champagne while noshing on their home-grown veggies in front of an oh-so quaint porch swing. Spoiler alert: I wouldn’t hold your breath waiting for that picture of me. The way I see it, those poor chefs must not have access to a rockstar farmers’ market like I do. Or they’re just flat out of their minds. And with this being the restaurant industry, my educated guess is the latter.
And all that makes tonight’s oysters that much more delicious. No fighting swarms of deer flies or blood-thirsty greenheads as the sun is coming up to pull the oysters out of the summer sea. No sorting or cleaning or shucking. That’s Tom’s job. Your job? Slurping perfect Shooting Point oysters on the half-shell. At half price. Damn. That’s my kind of job. Acme’s Halfy Hour. Every Thursday. 5:30 to 7:30. Take my word for it; the weekend starts here.
This weekend @ Acme: Chili rellenos with grilled peach salsa. Southern tomato pie. Pan-seared Lane snapper. Summer melon salad. Fried okra & shishito peppers. Beef short ribs. Grilled eggplant soup. Flash-fried grouper. Watermelon sangria. Peach cobbler with blackberry ice cream. Steamed Virginia clams. The Acme tomato plate. Crab cakes. Shooting Point oysters. Cheeseburgers. Grilled bone-in ribeyes. Cherry pie. Acme BLT bento box. Or you could put on camo and forage in Duke Forest. Your call.
Well, that’s all the news from Carrboro. The staff at Acme look forward to serving you soon.
The Staff at Acme
Reservations: 919 929 2263 or online