Monday, April 21, 2014

First week at our new home

Here's a glimpse of my first week in our new town.  
Claire and her sister Monica spent the week having a great time, check back for a more exciting update from Claire on that one. 

Claire made fresh salsa and a cheese board

while I emptied the quarter berths.
"a single bunk tucked under the cockpit" 
we have both port and starboard

between the quarter berths we have the option of where an inboard engine could be.
also, the thru-holes and drainage piping from the cockpit.

empty and clean. 
believe it or not, this is the best berth!
about 7ft long and plenty wide enough.
my mother has actually spent a week on the boat with this being her bunk, and she loved it!

for now, we keep our sail bags in here

nice looking boat

our new marina is pretty sweet.
see us?

a proper cook out for us on our first night!

When we were visiting here last month, I scored a job.
Currently the restaurant is named Tabella at Clear Creek Vineyard.
For the rest of the month of April we will stay open under the name "Tabella", with a Texas farm to table concept.
We will be closing for the month of May.
Reopening by June, with our new name and new concept.
"Eculent" which will be Modern Farm to Table.  Using locally sourced products, also hydroponically grown greens and veggies on site at the restaurant.  With a gastronomical approach.
Hard to explain, hopefully my photographs over the next few months will show you the evolution of the restaurant.

the new pass that David (my new boss, the owner) had installed while we were transporting Splendid Isolation

David took me to the local fish markets to check out what we will be working with

I spent my first day deep cleaning the kitchen and reorganizing the appliances.

upstairs is a full on winery, where all of our wines served on the menu are produced.

bottled and labeled

aged in mostly new American oak
some French oak

Claire's sister Monica came for a week long visit!!!
Unfortunately I spent the week working, while they had a great time exploring the area.
Claire will be doing a post on their week together very soon.

I have been working with the food and products that the previous chef left behind.
Each night I have created a different menu based off those products.

baby greens, pears, walnuts, brown sugar vin

Amuse Bouche
Roasted red pepper bisque, asparagus shavings

seared diver scallops, heirloom beans, pan braised kale

left: rack of lamb, tomato quinoa, cucumber, pineapple chili sauce
right: chicken breast, whipped sweet potatoes, haricot verts, blackberry merlot reduction

zucchini cupcakes, thyme whipped cream, prickly pear jam

local drum

another nights menu

duck breast, whipped sweet potatoes, squash ribbons, blackberry merlot reduction

local drum, rice pilaf, haricot verts, buerre noisette

Gulf Shrimp ceviche, rice flour crostini, cilantro aioli

working with what i've got on hand for now

there's Billy in the back, my one and only cook. (yep, just me and him!)
prepping out Amuse for the night.

here are some photos of our hydroponics

we will be working with Bayou City Hydroponics from now on for all our greens, herbs, and most of our vegetables

we can totally control the size, shape, color, and cross breeding of anything on the menu.

once the plants are big enough, they will be transported to the restaurant.
where we have 6 of these towers.  we will be able to monitor the growth and harvest for the menu.
picked and plated.  as fresh as can be.

this is kale that was started hydryponically and transferred to a plant bed.

edible flowers for garnishes

Cured duck breast, melons, balsamic reduction

our neighbor makes moonshine whiskey on his boat!
his great grandfathers 1800s recipe started from fresh corn.

Happy Easter from the Hot Biscuit

keeping Piña occupied
She really loves her new home.

New Paint Job

April 7th we started painting the hull of Splendid Isolation.  
We had been discussing colors for a long while now and decided that we want to go lighter than the original blue she was.  At $30 a day on the hard, we needed to work fast.  With our extremely tight budget and time frame, our only option was Interlux Brightside.  Which is a polyurethane, we wanted to go for a harder epoxy, but that was out of the question.

 We mixed one quart of Largo Blue, one quart of Yellow, and one pint of White which came out to be the exact color we wanted! And, just enough for 2 coats on the whole boat! 

we were told to roll the paint on with extra fine foam rollers.
which for some reason bubbled and ran. 
so we ended up painting the whole boat, two coats, with 3 inch foam brushes by hand!


Claire and I are both impressed and extremely pleased with our new paint job.

the sunflower yellow will be getting buffed as soon as we get the time.

we raised the water line

I removed the outboard mount.
We will be using the motor well in the aft lazaratte from now on. (that rectangle hole you see there)
I will be constructing a swim step platform with a flip-down ladder off of the brackets left behind.

April 8th I hand drafted stencils.  The font is based off of Captain Howdy
We carefully cut them out and traced them onto the hull.

Claire insisted be use 1 Shot lettering enamel for our new logo.
Our friend Juanita recommended this paint and it worked really well.
We went with Vermillion.

Everything we own.

Even though we have not sailed our vessel to North Carolina yet, we thought it was appropriate to put our home town as our hailing port.

We plan to register the boat through the Coast Guard in the future, instead of by state.
Our new paint job was based around their requirements.

Marc and I noticed that the VHF antenna fell off during highway transit, so a new one was installed

our old one may look beat, but at one point we were communicating over 85 miles!

let's hope this bad boy can perform to our standards

we put our longshaft 4 stroke Mercury 5HP in the motor well

with the outboard in here it is hidden from theft, lower in the water so less bogging out in choppy conditions, and closer to the rudder for snappier turns.

April 9th, Wednesday we were ready to launch!
We came from Guaymas, Mexico.  Stranded in the middle of Texas.  Knocked out new bottom paint, new hull paint, stepped the mast, cleaned the interior, and launched; all in a weeks time!

Claire getting the last bottom paint on where the stands were

After almost a whole year, she is back in the water!

we spent the night tied off at Clear Lake Marine Center

our new home is that tiny island at the very bottom center of this photo

Claire took the helm and led us to our new home

here we are!

we have had countless visitors stop by, asking our story and complimenting our home!
we sure are glad we aren't "that white boat".