Barbecue brisket and hot sausage combo plate with cornbread and macaroni & cheese
Got together for lunch on Saturday with my three high school/college buddies Mark, Tony and Joe in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. They were all at my brother’s funeral in 2021, but otherwise we hadn’t gotten together since before the pandemic, so it was fun to hang out for a few hours. We ate at Portsmouth Feed Co., in the old Pourtsmouth Savings Bank building in downtown, and I hadn’t been to Portsmouth for several years, either. The blurring of time from the pandemic really washes away one’s connections to the world.
The food was okay but not memorable. There are some barbecue joints around New England that do a good job, but there are a lot of mediocre places, and even some terrible ones. This was middling, but acceptable because the food wasn’t really the point. Frankly, I thought the mac & cheese was the best thing on the plate. The brisket was lean, which is how I prefer it, but without any serious smoke or bark. The sausage was spicy, but dry. There was a much better barbecue place in downtown Portsmuth a few years ago, but it closed even befoe the pandemic. Our server also seemed less than enthusiastic to have a table of geezers.
Anyway, we sat and chatted, then walked around downtown for a bit, before landing in a coffee shop to get out of the cold. All the kids are grown up and leading their own lives, some of the parents are passed away and others dealing with the ravages of afvanced age, and we’re not the wild and crazy guys we used to be, but there is an ease with old friends you can’t find anywhere else.