That Tiny Restaurant Dream

Many restaurant cooks have had the thought:  I just want to cook for a dozen people, four nights a week, making the food I love and then take off during the winter.  That is the dream.  And that is what Bryan did.  He converted the bottom floor of his house into a “restaurant”.  It’s only a restaurant in quotes because the kitchen is just like any home kitchen — and besides having more rustic pottery and glassware than I own (and a couple extra tables), it is pretty similar to my home.  His dad makes the bread; His girlfriend and a couple friends each serve one night a week; and on his days off he preps, forages and enjoys the amazing outdoor life of Cape Breton.

The two days I spent with Bryan weren’t too bad for me either:  after looking for chanterelles, fishing with his dad and picking a few beach edibles, Bryan cooked dinner and made each of the dishes for me as well.  Just the kind of living the dream filming I like to do: Film the plating, then eat the most delicious food.

As Bryan mentions in the film, he likes the quiet, and he is quiet.  So In our interview, he didn’t wax poetic like some Chefs are prone to do – raising their craft up to the level of art.  Chef as God.  No.  Bryan is matter of fact.  I walked away from our interview not sure if I could make a movie out of it.  But when I sat down to edit, I remembered that I wasn’t making Chef’s Table – I was trying to represent this person and share his lovely way of living and being.  So instead of searching for the poetry, I found the humble and peaceful lines that spoke to the experience of The Bite House.  He is living the dream without talking about it.  He’s just doing it — and he’s sold out for the entire season.