Together, we host Tarot by the Mouthful: a mouthwatering, multi-media culinary tour through the world of Tarot.
Sublime recipes. Soulful stories. Essays, videos, interviews and delicious surprises.
Join us every Sunday for a new installment — and get ready to sip, slurp, crunch and savor your way through the entire Tarot deck!
This week: Knight of Cups
Knight of Cups: the romantic Knight of Cups is the “Prince Charming” of the Courts. He’s sensitive and always willing to let his heart rule his head. This chap is caring and nurturing – the kind of partner who rubs your feet at night and brings roses for no reason whatsoever. The romantic dreamer. Mr. Emotion. The Knight of Cups can also be an indicator to let your heart lead in all matters. Move ahead with an open heart and you’ll find your way.
Kyle: True Romantic
There is no chef alive today, that I am aware of, who is more romantic than Francis Mallmann, the South American chef/owner of several restaurants, and the subject of one of the episodes on Netflix’s Chef’s Table. Mallman exudes romanticism. He cooks over open flame whenever possible, even off the side of small boat, with a cantilevered platform to hold the flame, while he sips wine and soaks up the placid Patagonian waters around him. He reads poetry to to his team, a close cohort of chefs, who are just a smattering of his 100 plus employees, The tight-knit group travels with him as he zigs and zags from his cooking/nature retreat deep in the wilderness of Patagonia, to his television appearances, or to supervise his restaurants.
In the sublimely produced Chef’s Table episode, Mallman says the word romantic three times. The executive producer of the series, David Gelb, the son of Peter Gelb, long the New York Metropolitan Opera’s managing director, knows a Romantic when he sees one. I would posit, one simply cannot have a childhood arrayed with the likes of Luciano Pavarotti, Renée Fleming, etc., whose daily toil are the works of Puccini and Mozart and Verdi, and not be well traveled in the aesthetic of romanticism.
What chef Mallmann and filmmaker Gelb both bring to the episode and the series respectively, is the deliberateness of the romantic heart. The Knight of Cups card I think is often understood, as is the word romantic. Romanticism, and the word Romantic, with its roots in the Middle Ages split between the more high-minded formal Latin texts and the French (one of the three Romance languages, French, Spanish, Italian based on Latin), was better suited for tales of the chivalrous, adventurous sort. What is often misunderstood about the Knight of Cups card when it turns up, is the premeditated aspects of romance, heart-on-the-sleeve sort of behavior.
Mallmann as a chef has constructed a life that seeks the romantic. He co-creates it and fosters it. His heart is a open as his style of cooking. Whole animals are stretched over open flames. The moment, the wind, the elements dictate the meal as much as the impetus of the chef. He lives with his surroundings, alive in the pleasure of it.
Gelb for his part applies the same sentiments to the Chef’s Table series. He opens each episode with a sample of Vivaldi’s Four Seasons, one of the most over-used and put upon pieces of music ever. Yet there is still something alive in it, and with the first touch of the bow to the strings our hearts start going. He lets his directors follow their instincts and hearts in telling the stories of the chefs in the series. There is not one format that must be adhered to. Regiment, and romance, are not good bedfellows.
The Knight of Cups is not just a card of gushing hearts. It is a card of disposition. One that strains the world through a certain sense of vulnerability. One that is open to adventure, but would never prescribe what the adventure ought to be.
Cookbooks by Francis Mallman:
Theresa: The Knight with Shiny Ice Cream Cones
When it comes to studying the tarot, most people struggle with the Court Cards. I know I did. But I found a way to get over my Court problem.
This little trick works like a charm: find somebody who embodies the traits of the card. This could be a celebrity or someone you know. Ascribing a card to a particular person is a great way to remember the energy behind the card.
The next time you pull that card in a reading, you’ll be able to easily remember the interpretation by recalling the person you assigned it to.
We’re going to do that here with some of the Court Cards. Today we’re focusing on the Knight of Cups. The Knight of Cups is caring, romantic, and kind. He wears his tender heart on his sleeve and he puts love into everything he does. This is the classic “Prince Charming” card.
One of the people that comes to mind when I think of this card is pastry chef and founder of gourmet ice cream treat lounge, Hunnymilk, Brandon Weeks.
Brandon is my friend Alexandra’s partner (lucky girl!) and I got to meet him earlier this year when I was hanging in Portland for the World Domination Summit. Alex and I ate dinner at Renata, the hip restaurant where he’s currently working (it’s new but already one of the hottest new spots in the hood).
All of the food was amazing but the highlight for me was Brandon’s bread (see pic below). I’m a bread enthusiast (thankfully, I don’t have gluten issues!) and can never resist a good slice. This bread was beyond my bread-pectations: thick, soft, chewy. With three different kinds and an assortment of composed butter, jelly and oil on the side – I was in bread heaven! (PS I hope there is actually a bread heaven on the other side.)
And here’s the deal: when food is made with love, it shows. You can sense the care and that is exactly what I felt when I was snarfing up every last crumb. Brandon puts his heart and soul into his work. That’s pure Knight of Cups energy.
Brandon recently opened up his specialty pastry and ice cream haven, Hunnymilk. They deliver, people. I need to get my sorry butt a permanent residence in Portland because I want goodies with names like “Man Cave” delivered to my front door. I’ll never leave my home again! Well, except to visit the dentist. So yeah…Knight of Cups – you can see why I chose Brandon to represent this sweet Court fella. (PS doesn’t the Knight of Cups look like he’s holding a giant ice cream cone?)
But there’s another reason why. When I saw the way Brandon looked at Alex, you could clearly see how much he loved her. They are quite possibly the most adorable and romantic couple, ever. That heart-on-the-sleeve romance is the true nature of the Knight of Cups and no one comes closer to illustrating that than Brandon. All together now: awwwww…..
Learn more about Brandon in this great interview he did with business + career strategist Ellen Fondiler.
Theresa and Kyle
© Theresa Reed | The Tarot Lady 2015
photos from personal collection and Jessica Kaminski
Hungry for more? Click here to explore the entire Tarot by the Mouthful series, from the very first card… right up to our latest installment. Bon appetit!