Shinobu-chan’s Napolitan Special
Gernot was eating cabbages.
Of the members of the city council of the Old Capital, he was the one in charge of the population census. That Gernot was absent-mindedly eating cabbage.
He didn’t even like sauerkraut.
On first glance, it appeared to be simple, peeled cabbages.
There was only a little bit of salt from seaweed, and a little seasoning oil. That was all the seasoning in it.
And yet, why?
(TL: Sauerkraut = pickled cabbages)
「Won’t you get addicted to it?」
When the waitress asked, Gernot almost nodded without realizing it.
It wasn’t possible to accept such a dish.
「Certainly, this dish has an original taste, fräulein. However, serving something like this at a bar in the Old Capital, with its history and tradition, is a little sloppy, don’t you think?」
(TL: Gernot uses fräulein instead of ojou-san.)
Gernot adjusted his monocle while conveying the meaning of the statement.
With his prominent forehead and sharp nose, with the monocle, Gernot looked like a professor of the Imperial Court University.
However, his work wasn’t such a noble profession.
「I see. I think it’s okay as long as it’s delicious.」
Gernot shrugged when the waitress said that with a smile.
Regardless of if one said delicious or good, making a remark that disregarded formalities reflected onto oneself. As expected, this waitress from a different ethnicity was uneducated, but her looks were good.
「Even so, when will the head chef, Taisho-san, arrive?」
He asked the waitress while quenching his thirst with “Toriaezu Nama”.
There was no point in talking with the waitress.
Gernot had come to “work” at this bar.
「Since there weren’t enough ingredients, he went shopping for them. Please wait a little longer. Shall I make some simple dishes while you wait?」
「It’s okay. This…crispy cabbage? I’ll snack on this a little bit more.」
Gernot’s occupation was a tax collector.
It was a city council job that entailed collecting taxes from every citizen in the capital.
Obviously, just collecting the required amount was unprofitable, so Gernot, the tax collector, found faults with the taxpayer in any way possible and made them pay more.
The surplus money entered the tax collector’s pocket.
Talented tax collectors were able to collect two or three times the requested amount. It was even said that they could build a mansion or a palace with that money.
Gernot’s target for today was this “Izakaya Nobu”.
This recently opened store had gained huge popularity among the soldiers, so the earnings would also be considerably higher.
If he handled it well, he could expect a large amount of income from them.
Even so, his hands did not stop.
Since his hands wouldn’t stop, they continued to reach out for one after another.
Since it was salty, he became thirsty.
Therefore, he drank his “Toriaezu Nama”. It was a vicious cycle.
Gernot was an official. Even though he was not so weak that he would get drunk after one or two glasses of ale, when he unintentionally drank more glasses than he could count with his fingers, his belly naturally swelled up.
「Well, it isn’t a bad idea to switch the flavours in my mouth for a little bit. Is there anything you recommend?」
「We recommend everything. However, the head chef isn’t around now, so there aren’t many that can be made.」
「Is that so?」
When one said that anything was good, there would be hesitation in making a decision.
Or maybe smoked bacon and stir fried potato?
As he pondered, he noticed that there was hot water simmering in a pot by the counter.
Had the waitress begun to boil the water while he was considering what to order?
(TL: Wurst = grilled sausage)
「Hey, fräulein. If I’m not mistaken…is that pasta I see?」
「Yes, it’s pasta. This is my lunch.」
「Then, I’ll have that.」
「Ehh, but this…isn’t serving pasta in a bar strange?」
Somehow, when he looked at the reluctant waitress, Gernot felt like yelling.
「This is a store which serves food, and I am the customer, am I not!」
「Yes. That is so.」
It had been a long time since he ate some, so when he saw it, he wanted to eat it by all means.
Gernot was from the southern part of the empire, and he grew up eating pasta every day.
Since he was successful as a tax collector in the Old Capital, he had not returned to his hometown even once.
Now that he had the opportunity to get a taste of home after a long time, he did not want to miss it.
「That is my order. Serve it to me.」
「Okay then, I don’t mind. But, for the seasoning…have you decided? I can’t make difficult ones, though.」
「Oh, I don’t mind. I’ll leave it to you.」
「Well then, let’s go with Napolitan.」
(ED: This is apparently a Japanese variation of spaghetti. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Naporitan) (TL: history trivia, the first spaghetti Napolitan in Japan was made using tomato puree, but since ketchup was more commonly available that time, people tend to use it instead of tomato puree. Thus, this happened.)