Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Cafe 641 Profile #3: Mojo

*** NOTE: Third in a series of Cafe 641 bare-all, expose profiles that allows Chef to e-hibernate this off season with a clear conscience.

Put simply, Mojo's mojo was infectious all season long. This Northshore Who Dat worked every bit of magic to deliver Saints' first downs, third down stops, and game-winning punt returns.

At the top of the list . . .
* Mojo is heard repeating a phrase that rubs off on other Cafe 641 Who Dats during the Monday night game . . . 3rd and 10, let's do it again . . . 3rd and 10, let's do it again . . . After that yields consecutive first downs, Mojo offers up a "2nd and seven, take us to heaven," and the Monday night magic just picks up more steam.

* Mojo begins a careful color-match uniform process that anticipates the Saints home uniforms and matches his shirt, pants, and eye black appropriately. After select victories, Mojo reminds the Cafe of his ability to color-match the Saints to success.

* After receiving his very own laminated Mojo Play-calling list from Chef, Mojo tugs his cap over his eyes, covers his mouth with the Mojo list and starts barking plays at Drew Brees. Any attempt to ask Mojo questions during offensive series becomes futile. Mojo is locked in.

* Mojo shows off his Southern hospitality, giving Chef a commemorative Cafe 641 Best Of . . . Menu that highlights some of the finest mojo/menu moments.

*Mojo wills the Saints 3rd and goal stop of the Eagles by grasping, kissing, and twisting his mojo-fied Saints medallion bead. Scott Fujita feels the force from Row 41 of the Upper Terrace and drives Westbrook out of bounds to end the touchdown threat.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Supa Saint

Chef interrupts his Cafe 641 profiles to bring you the following feel-good film, called to his attention by Dillyberto. The youtube link tells the story we've all experienced or hallucinated.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Cafe 641 Profile #2: The CAFE 641 Cocktail Chef

*** NOTE: Second in a series of Cafe 641 bare-all, expose profiles that allows Chef to e-hibernate this off season with a clear conscience.

Widely known throughout the Cafe for her GPS precision in locating every wine and cocktail vendor inside the Dome and for a thriving hair design business in Mid City, this enthusiastic Who Dat inspired the Diva in all of us.

Here's the highlights:

* Game 1: The CAFE 641 Cocktail Chef (a.k.a. Diva Vidrine) sets the "We are Family" vibe that dominates Section 641 all season long. Turning to all of Row 42, she announces, "We are Who Dats. We will endure each other."

*Early in the season, Cocktail Chef takes sole responsibility for monitoring the foul language uttered by Cafe Who Dats in the presence of children. "Chef! Check yo self! Your children are present!"

* Miracle Monday, sometime amidst celebration following Steve Gleason's blocked punt. Chef Who Dat lowers an accidental bony elbow upon the unexpecting head of Diva Vidrine. Stunned and possibly knocked unconscious for a second, she recovers quickly, accepts Chef's apology, and proceeds with her celebrating.

* Outside the Superdome, before Tampa Bay game. Chef spots Diva Vidrine already clutching a full Bloody Mary. Chef insists she also take a Guinness off his hand. Absolutely no resistance. Saints win.

* Diva Vidrine transforms into the CAFE 641 Cocktail Chef late in the season. In final home games, she begins plans for an exclusive Who Dat Cocktail menu to be unveiled for playoff games. Payton's Playoff Punch, made with New Orleans Rum Reggie Rum and Deuce Juice, becomes the Cafe's official playoff drink. *** NOTE: Cafe Who Dats were also authorized to take brief snorts from the flask of Jack Daniels that Nacho Libre regularly smuggled in on his upper thigh.

* The CAFE 641 Cocktail Chef thinks of everything. She distributes Who Dat Pills at playoff game, complete with the following directions: Take one black and one gold, 3x per day for excitement, hope, and increased Saints fever. Side Effects: May cause heart palpitations each time you hear the words "Saints," "Playoffs," and "Superbowl" in the same sentence; May cause strong urges to wear BLACK and GOLD every day; May experience increased appetites for football stats and rankings of playoff teams; May cause unexpected outbursts of WHO DAT or GO SAINTS several times a day; May cause you to have dreams of Buddy D in a dress at the Superbowl game.

More love for the CAFE 641 Cocktail Chef? Leave your message here.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Cafe 641 Profile #1: Nacho Libre

*** NOTE: First in a series of Cafe 641 bare-all, expose profiles that allows Chef to e-hibernate this off season with a clear conscience.

Initially, Nacho Libre was known in Cafe 641 only for his volume, which regularly exceeds the 110 decibels which brings on hearing loss. But careful attention to this Hattiesburg Who Dat reveals layers of emotional depth, wit, and musical knowledge.

Here's the 2006 season highlights:
* Nacho turns to Chef at halftime of the Monday Night Miracle and screams, "Chef! Do you hear that? Can you feel that? I called my daddy on the telephone, Chef. You know what he told me, Chef? The Saints are Coming!" On cue, the U2/Green Day anthem blares from the Dome speakers, and a Cafe 641 tradition is born. The call and response dirge "The Saints are Coming."(please note that the pacing of this chorus was seriously debated within the Cafe before its slower speed was finally agreed upon.)

* Nacho turns to high five Chef at the end of the Atlanta game and pulls back in revulsion. "Chef, put your mustache back on, beeotch! I don't even know who you are anymore." Thus began Chef's difficult, season-long relationship with lip hair.

* For conduct befitting a Cafe 641 Who Dat, Nacho receives Chef's very first Golden Spoon award during the Tampa Bay game. Spoon is then carefully tucked into Sean Payton-styled visor for remaining home games.

* During a penalty called against the Tampa Bay offensive line, Nacho deafens Rows 41 and 40 with: "CHEATERS! CHEATERS! CHEATERS!" It's simple statement of fact catches on quickly, and very soon, most of the Cafe is screaming "CHEATERS!" after every opponent penalty.

* Halloween weekend. Saints vs. Ravens. Nacho earns his stripes. Appearing just as the national anthem begins, he enters in full Nacho Libre costume, only removing the mask to breath and snort Jack Daniels.

* During a lull in the first Eagles game, Nacho turns to Rows 42 and 43 and asks, "Hey, ya'll hot up in here? Is anybody hot. I'm burning up, baby. It's too hot in here. I can't stand it anymore. I need to cool myself down. I need some water. I need a big, refreshing spray of water . . ." Mid-sentence, Nacho breaks into an inspiring rendition of the Sprinkler dance (one hand behind back, other fanned out like the arm of a lawn sprinkler, anointing the Who Dats below).

* Just after Reggie Bush somersaults into the Chicago endzone for the Saints final touchdown of the season, Nacho calls Chef on the phone: "Chef, sent the Mrs. to the store to purchase more spoons when we got down at halftime. She's standin' in line at the store, spoons in hand, and Reggie goes 88-yards for a touchdown! Who Dat, Chef!"

More memories of Nacho? Chef passes the mic . . .

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Thank You, Boys

When Chef finally turned the family-mobile around just blocks away from Interstate 10 on Sunday night after our Super Bowl run ended, he couldn’t have felt much worse. It was raining, turning cold, and WWL announced the Saints flight out of Chicago was delayed. Chef decided maybe it was time to head back home and tuck the kids into bed.

"Win or lose. We’ll be at the airport to say thank you."

That’s what we were saying at 7:45 a.m. on Sunday. By 9:45 p.m., though, the kids looked rough--still awake and desperate for an airport run—and Chef’s parental instinct kicked in for the first time since early September. So Chef missed his chance.

But crazy thanks go to the thousands who turned the little Kenner runway into a proper Who Dat finale.

Thanks to the Times-Picayune for realizing emotional catharsis is newsworthy.

Thanks to the Upper Terrace, Café 641 in particular, for cookin’ it up all season.

Chef’s been considering an off-season web hibernation. All season, the inspiration has come from the steam that rises to the top of the Dome. And now that we’ve got another 5-6 months to shop for lip hair pieces and golden spoons, Chef thinks it’s time to sign off until training camp.

But not before a series of Café 641 profiles that pays homage to his closest family members. Look for the bare-all expose over the next few days that will reveal Section 641 in all its Who Dat glory.

Friday, January 19, 2007

Da Bears? Da-licious!

Chef has made it very clear throughout the season that his kitchen is only open for Dome games. Solemn vows have been made to Café 641 patrons. Our bread must only be broken in the Upper Terrace.

Well, Who Dats . . . Chef is asking for a little slack this weekend as he considers a Big Game Menu of Bronzed Bear Loin, Baked Bear Beans, and yet another quarterback grillades dish: Grossman Grillades with (Cedric) Benson Bacon Grits.

Or, as Lil’ Reggie suggested on his way to school this week: “Hey, dad. How bout Bernard Berry Pie?” (Dude just upped his weekly allowance from one Golden Spoon to two!)

I’m hungry Who Dats. Throw the Chef a bone. I haven’t cooked up a proper Bear in years. Ya’ll already know how we roll with birds, gold diggers, and pirates. Ain’t it time, now? Don’t we need to cook up da Bears, Café 641 style?

Chef don’t like breaking vows inside or outside the Café. All I’m asking for is a little Who Dat understanding and the best Big Game recipes ya’ll can muster!

Monday, January 15, 2007

Just Living the Dream (In Black & Gold)

Monday, January 15, 2007. 10:52 a.m.

Chef's first view of sunlight since sometime Sunday morning after Cafe 641 relocated its movable playoff feast to Molly's, then the Goldmine, then some apartment floor near end of Bourbon.

Chef's first line of business? Prove to himself that it really happened, that he had been there, that this wasn't just another dream in black and gold (w/ compliments to Lolis Eric Elie).

Here's how the Chef recalled the Playoff Feast: (Who Dats invited to post revisions/additions to this chronology as comments. Chef will promptly make changes. We're rollin' wiki style!)
12:53 p.m. Sat. Jan. 13: Chef and Mrs. Chef drop off kids. Chef receives final training room treatment to protect groin muscle. The Mrs. gives it a good test and declares it ready for Cafe 641 action.

1:51 p.m. Sat. Jan. 13: Chef meets with recently hired Cafe mixologist, Diva Vidrine, about final preparation of Who Dat Cocktail menu. The Diva unveils a Cafe 641 surprise: Who Dat Medicine bags! Chef samples Payton's Playoff Punch. Welcomes Baton Rouge Barbara to the Cafe family. Declares Diva Vidrine a cocktail genius. Hitches ride with three hot Cafe Who Dats.

3:15 p.m. Sat. Jan. 13: Chef and the glamour girls stop at Juan's Flying Burrito on Carrollton for Joe Horn-itos Margaritas and Tailfeather Tacos. Chef applies freshly groomed lip hair.

3:47 p.m. Sat. Jan. 13: The Cocktail Chef orders a stop at Finn McCool's on Banks St. for a go-cup of Guinness, a roll-a-day, and distribution of Playoff Feast Menu. Savvy Finn McCool's customer asks Chef about his groin tribute to Joe Horn. Spontaneous, celebratory groin bump occurs. Chef blushes.

4:02 p.m. Sat. Jan. 13: Cocktail Chef offers passengers a Drew Brees demonstration: a thread-the-needle parallel parking job that rivals a Brees to Colston first-down pass. On walk to the Dome, the Cafe 641 glamour girls catch the eye of a true Southern Who Dat from Hattiesburg, a young man whose good looks are rivaled only by his enthusiasm for Our Saints. Chef confers with the girls and agrees that the Hattiesburg Handsome is Golden Spoon-worthy. True to his Southern roots, Hattiesburg has his body guard confer on Chef a custom-printed "Brees Warning" t-shirt.

4:30 p.m. Sat. Jan. 13: Chef and the Mrs. make their way onto the concourse for pre-game meeting with other Cafe 641 family members. Chef takes time to invite Philly fans up to the Cafe for Westbrook Trout Manure.

4:37 p.m. Sat. Jan. 13: The Holy Father stops Chef and orders a Who Dat blessing and breaking of the Cafe 641 French Bread. (Bread is later confiscated by dedicated Dome personnel who recognize that french bread is greater security threat than the 50 Golden Spoons Chef carries in same bag).

4:53 p.m. Sat. Jan. 13: Chef and the Mrs. locate a crowd of Cafe 641 family members: Nacho Libre Hogan & friends/family. True to Hattiesburg form, the Hogan Who Dats have been at it since sunrise. Chef apologizes profusely for case of mistaken identity: after Hogan introduces a family friend as the "lady who delivered both our children," Chef is puzzled and asks, "You're the surrogate mother?" "No, Chef. I'm the gynecologist." Chef recovers, slightly, and tries to impress by stretching a roasted rubber eagle to its breaking point.

6:15 p.m. Sat. Jan. 13: Chef finds Dilly (or Berto?) and Ashley waiting at the Cafe 641 entrance. Dilly (sorry, Chef couldn't remember which sibling was Dilly, which was Berto) declares the pre-game meeting of Section 635 and Section 641 as the Who Dat equivalent of the meeting of the courts of Rex and Comus, minus the boring tableauxs. The men look each other in the eyes and exchange the unspoken recognition that greatness will indeed happen tonight.

6:21 p.m. Sat. Jan. 13: Chef awards a custom "Eat Bird" chef's hat to one of the youngest, loudest Who Dats in the Cafe. Three pitiful Philly fans boo. Chef thanks them for their support.

6:23 p.m. Sat. Jan. 13: After passing out Playoff Feast menus, Chef is stunned by three successive acts of generosity from the Cafe 641 family. Proud Mary and son John award Chef with the largest Golden Spoon known to man, decorated with a fleur de lis. Homer announces to the Cafe that it's time to start ladling some playoff victory and awards Chef the Cafe 641 Fleur de Ladle. Jacob then takes centerstage and presents Chef with a commemorative Cafe 641 playoff menu poster. Chef is moved to tears by the love and the realization that the Cafe has transformed itself into a true Who Dat family.

7:01 p.m. - 10:32 p.m. Sat. Jan. 13: Noise and hysteria reach undocumentable levels. Highlights include: a Who Dat baby naming contest that spontaneously erupts in the Cafe in honor of Mark and Kristin; the Who Dat conversion of a Eagle fan in the final seconds of the game . . . (more to follow)

10:33 -10:57 p.m. Sat. Jan. 13: Cafe 641 celebrates the Saints 27-24 victory over the Eagles. Tears shed all over the Chef's table. Jubilation carries over into the escalators.

11:15 p.m. Sat. Jan. 13: Mrs. Chef looks up and announces, "This is not football. This is life. Our team. Our city. Our Saints."

11:22 p.m. Sat. Jan. 13: On party parade to the Quarter, Chef and Mrs. meet two of the nicest Who Dats along the Gulf Coast, a couple from Meridian, MS who confess they've eaten in Cafe 641 once earlier this season. Mr. Meridian shows true Who Dat love by spreading the Cafe's favorite "Deuce Upside Your Head" chant to Section 605. "Chef, I've got to tell you the truth. It's poultry season. And we can't stop eatin' the bird!" Mr. Meridian confesses his dream job: workin' as a chef (keep the dream alive, brother!). Near Canal and Bourbon, Chef and Mrs. bid the Meridian Who Dats goodnight and more love.

12:01 a.m. Sun. Jan. 14: Molly's at the Market is transformed into post-game Cafe 641 with the unexpected, non-stop arrival of Cafe Who Dats. Mrs. Chef sets up shop with Wisconsin Who Dats, while Chef formally meets Sean, a committed Cafe 641 Who Dat who celebrated his one-year anniversary on December 30, 2006 by masqueradinng as Scott Fujita. (Sean, Chef wishes he had your knack for romance!). Chef's longtime road chef, PK, arrives at Molly's in taxi from Metairie and nnounces that bird tastes better with beer.

Chef re-applies eye black.

More Cafe 641 Who Dats pile in, making informal plans to caravan to Chicago if need be. Chef gets pulled aside for an impromptu meeting with an anonymous 641 Who Dat. "Chef, I gotta confess. I don't take menus from you anymore inside the Cafe. You see, Chef, the last time I took a menu was for the Baltimore and Cincinati games. And I've avoided eye contact with you ever since. But, tonight, Chef, tonight I need a menu. I'm jones-in' for a menu. Hook a Who Dat up, Chef." After Chef hands over the Playoff Feast menu, the anonymous 641 Who Dat calms down, announces that he's auditioning for a part as a Saints fan in a major TV commercial spot the next morning. Chef rubs his eyes and smiles.

A French Quarter Who Dat in uncomfortably tight gold lame pants has his ass repeatedly slapped by passing female Who Dats. Chef cringes with jealously. Gold Lame borrows Chef's Golden Spoon to assist in feeding the Molly's crowd celebratory drinks. Chef leaves after leading Molly's in the "Deuce Upside Your Head" chant.

2:15 a.m. Jan. 14: Mrs. Chef and PK announce that it's time to hit the Gold Mine for a little dancing. Chef offers up a little Saute Sashay and Grill and Grind, as Baby Boy pours "This is How We Live" over the crowd.

3:31 a.m. Jan. 14: The Wisconsin Who Dats invite Chef, Mrs. Chef, and PK to sleep on their Bourbon St. apartment floor. Chef fades quietly into sleep, the Who Dat lip hair still firmly in place.

Who Dats, we did it. The dream is alive.

Friday, January 12, 2007

Playoff Feast Countdown

This is it, Who Dats. Chef is finished with gameday preparations.

Last item on checklist was the purchase and preparation of a case of Golden Spoons for the entire Chef's Table in the upper rows of Cafe 641 (see Chef's back pocket on left).

Staff has been hired. Menus have been printed. Eagle eggs have been deviled. Spoons have been bronzed. Rubber chicken has been painted green. Leidenheimer's french loaf has been baked. Groin injury has been nursed. Eye black supply has been replenished. Mustache has been adhered.

Who wants it more? The Who Dat
Who needs it more? The Who Dat
Who works harder for it? The Who Dat
Who will savor it longer? The Who Dat

Who will have it? The Who Dat

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Smoked Groin Jerky? Playoff Punch? Chef Hires New Cafe Staff

Final preparations for the Blessed Who Dat Playoff Feast week included the hiring of two new staff members in Cafe 641.

What moves a place from greasy spoon diner to Cafe status, you ask? Chef thinks its the hiring of a premier mixologist, Cocktail Chef Diva Vidrine, and a smoked, rubbed, and cured meat specialist, Carter Charcutier (pictured left).

After its frontpage advertisement in the Times-Picayune this week, Cafe 641 immediately used the uptick in sales to hire the new kitchen staff, who join Chef Who Dat and the Sous Chef.

Cocktail Chef Diva Vidrine promises a spiked Payton Playoff Punch (made exclusively with Reggie Rum, New Orleans Rum, and Deuce Juice) for Saturday's feast. Carter Charcutier is working on a Smoked Groin Jerky taken from discarded muscle salvaged from Joe Horn.

Our noble Charcutier learned that Horn (a.k.a. "Captain Eye Black") spoke with Coach behind closed doors today:

"Look Payton. Here's my damn groin muscle. I've ripped it off my bone. You do what you want with it, but I'm gonna be in that number on Saturday."

Carter Charcutier was so inspired that he's spent all afternoon curing, rubbing, and smoking Horn's groin into a commemorative jerky. Look for it on Saturday as a lil' lagniappe from Chef.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Front Page Spotlight on the Upper Terrace!

It didn't take Chef long to recognize his second home when he dropped the Times-Picayune on the breakfast table this morning. Top right corner, Section 641! Zoom in close and you'll see where all the magic happens!

Also noticed that Philly fans are desperate for tickets and the dreaded Green Legion plans a return trip to NOLA. They've marketed a Girls Gone Wild-style video from their earlier visit called "The Green Legion Invades New Orleans 2006." Some unlucky Who Dats will have the bad fortune of sitting next to 54 of these jackasses.

You might also remember from their earlier visit that they travel in packs as compensation for low testosterone levels. Chef recommends a run on rubber chickens at Mardi Gras supply stores. Chef experienced some success with this tactic earlier this season.

Monday, January 08, 2007

A Who Dat Coloring Contest

Imagine Chef’s surprise when he found this uncanny likeness of himself posted on the internet this weekend.

Chef always makes a point of cooking for Who Dats of all shapes, sizes, and ages . . . so maybe he should’ve expected to see a budding Michalopoulos sketching his image. Let’s see, eight home games this season meant a distribution of 20-25 Café 641 Golden Spoons, and Chef counts at least 10 going to the kiddie set. Yeah, that should generate at least one Chef Who Dat crayola sketch on a refrigerator somewhere along the Gulf Coast.

Okay, now to the important stuff. Chef is looking to generate a little artwork for the Café’s playoff menu and announces a Who Dat Coloring Contest to commence immediately and end Friday, January 12.

Ask your mom first, and then grab your watercolors, your colored pencils, your markers, your crayolas, your charcoals, and get to work. The Contest is open to any Who Dat theme, including team owners, beer vendors, images of Saints victory, images of dejected Eagles fans, and portraits of Rita Benson LeBlanc (your welcome, Row 41, Seat 8).

Post entries here – if that’s possible. Or direct me to a suitable site or e-mail address to collect the images.

*** Submission of artwork indicates willingness for Chef to transfer profit of all proceeds to his charitable organization, Sisters of the Blessed Dome Foam, Inc.

First submission comes from Super Saint Girl . . . Notice the pink "eye black," red mustache, two golden spoons, and floating fleur de lis.

Friday, January 05, 2007

Back in (Eye) Black: Horn Re-Attaches Groin Muscle

Like his gameday hero, Hollywood Joe Horn (a.k.a. Rested Tendergroin; Joe Top Shelf Hornitos; Joe “Can You Hear Me Now” Horn), Chef feels well rested at the end of this playoff bye week.

That means a new tube of eye black for this weekend’s playoff opponent viewing parties. And ya’ll know Joe’s got an entire case of eye black ready for next weekend’s playoff smack down!

Chef likes Joe’s media comments this week. Chef thinks Joe shows character and excellent body awareness. Joe knows the score:

“When you can win one football game, and you’re playing for the NFC Championship . . . for the SAINTS, after all we’ve been through, all these years. Man, I wouldn’t miss it for the world. Even if I got out there and was ripping my groin muscle off the bone, that’s what would happen. That’s what I would want to do.”

Ya’ll heard that, Who Dats?!!! No more excuses. Take a cue from Joe and a New Year’s resolution from Uptown Who Dat Extraordinaire, Dillyberto: More eye black.

Don’t stop til ya get enough!

Repeat after Chef: Apply and smear . . . apply and smear . . . apply and smear.

Random, sudden moment of Who Datspiration: any reason for some white Café Press t-shirts with a gold 87 and “Horn” on the back and a “Back in (Eye) Black” message on front?

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Cafe 641's Playoff Cocktail Menu

After careful observation (and occasional participation) in the heavy Dome Foam consumption that happens every Saints home game in the Upper Terrace, Chef has decided that a Cafe 641 Playoff Cocktail Menu is in order. And because Chef's skills are limited to kitchens and grills, we're in need of a Cafe 641 Mixologist.

(Don't worry diehard Who Dats. Gameday food will appear on the menu too. We'll still be roasting the Saints TBD playoff opponent).

Chef has been watching your behavior closely, Cafe 641. I've seen the ankle flask swig of Jack Daniels from Nacho Libre, the double fisted dose of Bud Light from Proud Mary, and the aftermath of a Section 640 Who Dat who drank too much and wandered into the Cafe.

After careful deliberation, Chef offered the the Cafe 641 Mixologist position last week to Diva Vidrine.

The Diva first caught Chef's eye with her flashy boa on Miracle Monday coupled with repeated glasses of red wine. The next week, Chef was impressed by the Diva's cocktail diversity: sipping Bloody Marys on the way up the Superdome ramp, even while accepting a pint of Guinness from a passerby. She's been honored with repeated Golden Spoons, penned the very funny "Sing a Song of Six Wins," and dons very chic Who Dat attire.

Congrats Diva Vidrine! We're looking forward to your playoff mixology skillz!

Feel free to post drink suggestions here for our new Cafe 641 Mixologist. She hints at a cocktail menu that features only our Saints!