Last night I learned an important lesson: You should not try to broil the sugar on top of your creme brulee in an unfamiliar oven after two glasses of wine.
I was invited to a dinner party for Diwali, and Chatty asked me to bring dessert. So I thought, hey, creme brulee, that's a nice light dessert after a big Indian meal. The only problem is that you have to do the hard sugar finish on top at the last minute. And then I had two largeish glasses of wine and was unable to come up with the idea "if the sugar is charring, you should turn down the flame." I'd also never broiled anything in a gas oven before and was confused by the broiler being next to the floor.
Well, anyway, it tasted ok after I took the worst of the charred part off. And I have one unfinished creme brulee left over...I may do it tonight with the torch.