Though James Beard Outstanding Chef semifinalist Melissa Kelly deals with mainly hand soap thieves at her Rockland, Maine, restaurant Primo — "the more expensive the product the faster it goes" — there was a time when she faced down bolder thieves. Such as those who would steal an egg tree by attempting to hide in the bushes outside the restaurant. Here's the chef herself to tell the tale:
"A while back when I was the chef at Old Chatham Sheepherding Company Inn?It was the end of the evening and I was sitting in the front office discussing a few issues with our GM when a woman quickly stepped out the front door and stashed an egg tree that I had made for decoration on the mantle into the bushes?little did she know I was sitting right next to a window by those bushes, so after she reentered I went out and brought the tree into the office. Then about 30 minutes later when the ladies were leaving I saw her digging through the bushes looking for her treasure!
We never said anything but had a good laugh. I had worked hard in one of my Martha Stewart moments?blowing out all of those Aracuna eggs and glueing them to a Styrofoam cone with Spanish moss in between. I wasn’t going to let that go so easily!!!"