SKIP THE SOUR CANDY (FOR NOW): If you had to think back to what you might have eaten when you saw "The Breakfast Club" or "The Goonies" or a host of movies in the theater back in 1985, could you recall what you ate? Popcorn with a little too much butter and salt, sure -- that's probably a given. Maybe some sour candy or chocolate-laden caramels. Or a hot dog? Okay, maybe you ate a hot dog, too. Movie food is in its own class, and definitely the movie food of our youths, but food based on movies is something entirely different. A gourmet spread can be concocted, in homage, to particular cinematic works of art, and there doesn't have to be a piece of popcorn or sour bear in the house (as yummy as those both are). A chef might be inspired by an actor, a character, the setting, or, yes, even a scene within the film involving eating. The toques behind the recently opened Barbareño will be so inspired, come the end of the January and beginning of February, when they fashion a seven-course meal spotlighting a host of films from 1985, including, you got it, "The Goonies" and the handful of teens spending a dour (but ultimately delightful) Saturday serving detention in a certain Chicago school library.
"THE BREAKFAST CLUB" DINNER: Those two flicks are among several 1985ers that will fill out the fine-dining-y menu at the Santa Barbara restaurant during Film Feast, a cuisine-cool happening that runs concurrently with the Santa Barbara International Film Festival. The to-dos that appeal to appetites, and the cuisinaire's wish to forever try newer things, are plentiful during Film Feast, but those cinema buffs with a special love of 1985 -- and, really, there are so many of us -- should book a spot at the special Barbareño dinners now. Will you wear your jelly shoes and neon headband? Who wouldn't dress outlandishly a la 1985 at a dinner tributing mid-80s flickdom? Go big, as '80s people did, for a cheeky fine dining experience, where the sour bears may be few but the silver-screen whimsy will be high.