The Blu Parrot: A Supper Club with (He)art

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Gumbo band performers at Blu Parrot, Westport, Connecticut

My ink and watercolor sketch of Inakaya (now titled "Master Chefs") was rejected from Westport Arts Center's "Foodies" show but instead selected for their salon des refuses -- to grace the walls at The Blu Parrot, a fab new food-and-live-music joint across from the Westport train station. Owners Adam Lubarsky, Perry Cantor and Steve Alward have created a space where food, art and music all play well together. M. and I went on Sunday night for dinner. The food was eclectic and enjoyable -- especially liked the fresh-popped popcorn flavors (try the jalapeno-cheddar).

The moment I sat down and saw the musicians on stage, I regretted not toting along my sketchbook. However, Blu Parrot obliged with a four-pack of Crayola crayons, a beer menu, and a butcher-paper tablecloth.

I remembered the task Nina Johansson had set for us in the Challenge Through Limitations workshop at the Urban Sketching Symposium in Santo Domingo -- and I was determined to do a better job this time capturing values and shapes with less-than-optimal tools! Crayons only stay decently sharp for a few minutes -- they're soon just blunt wax sticks that you hope make a mark in the right place.

Singer at Blu Parrot, Westport, Connecticut

The highlight of the evening was definitely the music. The theme was gumbo - the performers played a little New Orleans, a little R&B, some Etta James -- you get the picture. And diners actually got up and danced! It's an infectious mood-lifter to clap and sway with your fellow patrons to sultry jazz beats.

But back to the visual arts -- the restaurant's walls are tastefully covered with paintings, mostly from local artists. My piece hangs right by the entrance, next to the host's station. If you're in town, please go! and eat! and dance! (and buy art!)

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