Well, we lit it up again this morning. Got ALCHEMISTS (1A: Ones who think things are good as gold?) and PIRATESHIP (15A: Feared sight on the Spanish Main) right off the bat, and then it was off to the races. Relatively, that is. I know there are folks who will finish this grid in under ten minutes, but for us, a Friday/Saturday combined time of under 50 minutes is startling.
Frannie didn't love RESOW (48D: Plant in subsequent seasons), I didn't love AREAR (52D: In the back), and neither of us was familiar with SALMI (53D: Game stew), but these are, I think, small prices to pay for such a nice grid as this.
On the quality side, we've got BLACKMAGIC (33A: Art that uses curse words?) contrasting with ARCHANGELS (61A: High spirits?), and a SAMARITAN (13D: Do-gooder) competing with a BADEGG (55A: No-gooder) and a DOMINATRIX (67A: Whip wielder) (Huygens alert!). HAYSTACKS (4D: Frequent Monet subjects), LIPREADER (34D: One getting messages by word of mouth?), and even WIDERIGHT (37D: Like some missed field goals) are all good.
The NE was where we ended up today. We were slowed considerably by two errant guesses - my "rArE" for BASE (11A: Like metals used by 1-Across) (I couldn't have been more wrong) and Frannie thinking a little too big with "Ship" for SEMI (18A: Big long-distance carrier?). The crossing composers, the TV reference to a show we don't watch, and the tricky James Bond trivia (AMERICANO (12D: First drink ever ordered by James Bond)) didn't give us much to go on. I think we got in at the bottom with WATT (37A: Volt-ampere) and COMEUNDONE (42A: Fall apart), and then climbed up from there.
All in all, a very nice Saturday.