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When I stepped inside the restaurant, today’s invitees had their breath taken away while straightening their backs.
On this fine day we were holding the Pre-Open Reception. On the first day, the owners, Sword and me, would personally greet the guests.
Well, I’m going to be the only one doing the greeting, though. Sword has completely refused it, hands down.
“Dear ladies and gentlemen, you have my deepest gratitude for having followed our invitation to attend our humble feast today despite your busy schedule. My name is Indra, and I am the owner of the 『Haughty Restaurant』. I am delighted and pleased to make your acquaintance.”
After the customary greeting, I explained all the key points of this restaurant such as the store’s concept, the methods of ordering, the means to reserve a table, the requirements for companions, what to do if they’d like to introduce acquaintances to this place, and so on.
“Since we will accept requests to take out the leftover food, feel free to ask at any moment. However, the food will not last long, so please make sure to eat it up on the same day. I can already foresee that the ladies and gentlemen, who are fond of drinks…or maybe I should say, liquor, will be very eager to purchase the liquor that is going to be served today. But, at present, we do not have any plans to sell it.”
The venue became noisy. Some of the guests even looked shocked.
Huh? Were they hoping to buy a stock here or something like that?
“The reason is grounded in my personally producing only small amounts. Unfortunately the supply would not be able to keep up with the demand. I believe currently the only places for you to buy the liquor will be this restaurant and an auction where Sword’s friend, a merchant, is going to sell some of the liquor. Also, since it is a product that is difficult to store, sales to individuals will have to wait for the time being. To make up for this, the first cup will be free of charge for you. We have a drink menu, and you can pick any of the drinks listed there for free. However, starting with the second cup, we will need to charge you the price as it is listed on the menu.”
Cheers welled up.
Sword cast a glance at me.
But, don’t worry. Rather than them tenaciously pestering us about selling the liquor to them, it’s better to run a first-cup-free campaign.
“…Now then as you can see, I am former nobility, but nowadays I am a commoner and adventurer. That said, I might know noble etiquette, but I don’t plan on bothering you with it. This restaurant is intended for commoners as a place to visit when they feel like enjoying some extravagance.”
I stopped talking for the moment, and took a look around me.
Shrugging my shoulders, “……That’s why, no need to act all stiff and formal. Although it’s bound to the condition of not causing any trouble to others, you can enjoy the liquor and food to your heart’s content. …Oh, before I forget, no matter how much money you might have, don’t overdo it with the drinking. If you go on a rampage or act inappropriately, you’ll be kicked out and won’t be allowed to drink any liquor in this restaurant anymore. Well then, please enjoy yourself to the fullest.”
Laughter suddenly broke out. Sword smiled wryly, too.
For the time being, I had Sword escort me to the waiting room.
“Now then, I think we’ll help out where needed while keeping an eye on things.”
“Yeah, yeah…even if you say that, all I can do is carry the luggage, you know?”
“That’s plenty. How about you go entertain the guildmaster for a bit?”
He came since we sent him an invitation, but he looked somewhat overwhelmed by all of this.
“Sure, why not. I’m gonna call out to all the folk thinking they came to the wrong place.”
Sword disappeared towards the floor.
As I was looking around, the first thing I noticed were the people who couldn’t decide on their first drink. Since I suspected that some people would fill their cups to the brim if left to their own devices, I had the staff walk around with trays that were loaded with pre-filled cups of different drinks.
People were looking at the selection while groaning.
A normal drink would be filled to the brim together with ice. The cups with cider and ale were filled by 70% without any ice. The smaller, ornamented glasses with wine were likewise filled by 70%. Brandy and whiskey could contain ice, but they were usually one-shots and the glasses were half full.
We also mixed brandy and whiskey with carbonated drinks, turning them into Highballs.
I had hired staff for the sake of only working the drinks, and had thoroughly taught them all I know about it. To be honest, I had expected that some of them might steal liquor, but not a single one has done so. On the contrary, they were holding the bottles and glasses with trembling hands while looking scared (because all of it was expensive stuff).
When I rudely asked some of them, “Don’t you sometimes feel like stealing and selling the liquor , seeing how you’d be able to earn manifold your wages?”, they shook their heads furiously.
“I’d definitely get exposed! This is the only place selling these, so I’d be caught in no time.”
“I don’t have the balls to steal and sell something belonging to an S-Rank adventurer.”
“If I did anything like that, my life would be forfeit.”
Ah, I guess it’s what Sword talked about a while ago: “No one would sneak into the house of an S-Rank adventurer.”
Seeing how it apparently happened quite a few times in reality, I can’t describe you as anything but naive and too good-hearted. Don’t become too complacent just because you’re an S-Rank adventurer! is what I thought, but it looks like normally people don’t steal and sell your stuff.
Once everyone had finally chosen a drink, people toasted all over the place. Even the guildmaster, who had been acting meek and frightful so far, seemed to have relaxed a bit after chatting with Sword, and cheerfully clinked glasses with him.
The guildmaster went with a Highball, I think. Sword chose ale.
How unusual…for Sword to pick ale… Oh, I got it. It’s because he alone can drink as much as he likes. Well, I think he’d drink as much as he wants even without the permission to do so, but I wonder whether he understands that it’s a bad idea? Can he actually read the mood?
I told a waiter to not give Sword any refills, even if he asked. As soon as I also added a message for Sword, telling him that he should read the atmosphere as we couldn’t have him being the only one in the room getting as many refills as he wanted, the waiter headed over to inform Sword.
The guildmaster who watched and listened from the side broke out into roaring laughter at Sword’s completely flabbergasted face. Sword immediately blew a fuse, and rushed over to me.
“I’m one of the owners, so what’s the issue!?”
“Then you should read the situation all the more. The guests around you can’t drink as much as they like, can they? If only you were to down one drink after the other, you’d draw extremely envious and reproachful looks on yourself, wouldn’t you?”
After being at a loss for a moment, he headed back on the floor once more. There he went on the stage I had used for my greetings earlier, and gave a rather messy speech himself.
“I’m the owner Sword. Thanks for comin’ to our restaurant today. Today it’ll be my treat. Drink as much as you like…well, if I said that, Indra would get pissed and beat me black n’ blue, so three cups! Up to three cups is free of charge for everyone!”
The hall burst into loud cheers.
Still, he wanted to drink his liquor so much that he went even as far as doing something he’s bad at like giving a speech?
The Full Course Menu is as follows:
– Amuse-bouche and Gougère
– As hors d’oeuvre: a three-layered terrine, monster meat in a chilled, fermented orange-mint sauce, and one item from the assorted platter of appetizers.
– As supper: a potage made out of potatoes and fermented apples.
– As main: monster meat saute and a portion of wine-based stew.
– As dessert: cheesecake with fermented berry sauce.
Lastly, the guests could choose between cold water with a shot of orange-mint and regular, hot water. One cup was free of charge here. Black tea cost extra. So did the bean tea I had developed.
This was the menu the master chef and I came up with after pooling our ideas. Given that we could use as much milk as we wanted nowadays, we adopted it in many dishes.
I mean we made mountains of Gougère.
You’re asking where I found eggs in this world?
That’s something I caught as well! No! I scouted it!
A cockatrice! Moreover, a unique kind!
――It was tiny. On top of that, its plume had an eye-popping blue color!
Since it told me, “I was shunned by my brethren for being small, and thus I’ve been living in hiding since I’m weak,” with its body trembling all over, I answered, “Then, how about I provide you with a safe place to live in exchange for you giving me eggs?” And thus the scouting was complete.
Of course I also had it invite its friends. They were red and yellow, resulting in me having various thoughts on the matter, but I didn’t mention a single of them.
After explaining the situation to the charge cows, I got both to live together.
Since the cockatrices said, “Our cock-spurs and the fangs of our snake part have poison glands, but no poison will come out unless we will it,” I prepared a magic antidote tool and an antidote that could be drunk at any moment as a precautionary measure.
But, they lived so peacefully together that it didn’t look like it’d be needed, and the cockatrices produced masses of eggs for us as well.
Still, that was really a big help.
Until now I had diligently walked around and picked up eggs whenever I found some, but with this I’d finally be able to have a stable supply. Their fodder was very cheap too, since they had apparently taken an extreme liking to the leftovers from our liquor brewing.
The charge cows liked those leftovers as well, so they heartily feasted on it together.
In addition, they pecked at malt or pea plants, and their snake part apparently ate the smaller monsters that showed up every once in a while.
They sure are peaceful. Their colors are super close to being a traffic light though. …Oops, I spilled the beans.
The eggs produced by those colorful cockatrices had colorful shells, but their content was ordinary. The colorful shells made it seem like we were having Easter every day, but they were a lot more delicious than the ones I had gathered so far!
The flavor was deep.
By the way, the milk from my charge cows was also more delicious than the one I drank at the milk stand a while back.
That’s a unique species for you!
――As I blankly thought about the events around the cockatrice, the menu had progressed all the way to dessert.
Around a third of the people wanted to take out some food. The guildmaster was among them, too.
The dessert was especially a dish all of them wanted to take out. It looks like they’re going to share it with their wives and children.
How very kind! I’m sure most of the family-oriented people opted for take-out.
The drinkers turned down a digestif for the reason of having to sober up. Quite amazing, that.
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