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Michael Barnes

The Return of the Wren Cottage Feast

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Like our Spice Boys and Triple Cone of Silence series of dinner parties — along with the Winter Beach Reading Week and Summer Mountain Reading Week — the Wren Cottage Feast is among the most cherished Keller-Barnes social traditions.

10422541_10156515936760316_4312695641822562041_nAs with all traditions, they go in an out of fashion. For instance, the seasonal Reading Weeks, as big social events, have gone on long-term hiatus.

We are delighted to report the return, however, after many months, of the narrowly focused Wren Cottage Feasts, which include six carefully matched guests and usually six meal courses with matching drinks. It’s just the right number for five or so hours of entertaining conversation.

Our guests of honor last night were Forrest Hooper and William “Bill” Lavallee, the couple hitched for 59 years before their official wedding last year. Adding to the glee were four dear friends, Randy and Suzie Harriman, and Jamie and Albert Cantara.

The menu consisted of salmon tostadas, lentil salad, carrot-ginger soup, leg of lamb, artichoke-and-grape-tomato gratin and chocolate soufflé. Most of the beverages came from Goldeneye Wines, and its crowning pinot noir from Mendocino’s Anderson Valley.

This is one tradition we plan to revive more regularly.