Thursday afternoon headlines: Woman charged after SUV crashes into Towson government building; Experts Warn About Flesh-Eating Bacteria In Chesapeake Bay; Old Bay-flavored beer sales went berserk; and more

0 Written by: | Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 4:45pm

Woman charged after SUV crashes into Towson government building- Baltimore Sun

Worn, fractured rail caused Ellicott City train derailment, NTSB determines- Baltimore Sun

Baltimore Man Sentenced 6 Years, $105K For Identity Theft Scheme- CBS Baltimore

Experts Warn About Flesh-Eating Bacteria In Chesapeake Bay- CBS Baltimore

Old Bay-flavored beer sales went berserk, causing Flying Dog Brewery to devote 65% of production to it- Baltimore Business Journal

Driver fined $1,500 in death of track coach- ABC 2 News

House of the Day, Real Estate, Home & Garden

House of the Day: Custom Post and Beam in Reisterstown

0 Written by: | Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 4:27pm

4406 Piney Grove Road, Reisterstown
4 bedroom(s), 4 bathroom(s)
3,608 square feet
4406 Piney Grove Road
4406 Piney Grove Road
4406 Piney Grove Road Read More →

Health and Fitness

All-Inclusive List of Maryland’s Gorgeous, Paved Bike Trails

0 Written by: | Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 3:00pm

Bike Trails

Henson Creek Trail/ Photo via American Trails

Baltimore is not exactly known for its bike-ability or bike-friendly neighborhoods. On the contrary, in some parts of Baltimore, cyclists have literally been attacked; pulled off their moving bikes and into the street. We lack bike lanes and bike racks; honestly, we lack much cycling infrastructure in general. As a result, the number of people riding their bike to work here is small potatoes in comparison to nearby cities like D.C., Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh.

But if you are a Marylander who just bought a bicycle, don’t fret! The redeeming moment that I have set you up for is now: Maryland has a profusion of bike trails, many of which follow gorgeous, leafy routes that wind up and down mountain paths, or circumnavigate scenic lakes and rivers. We are not talking about mountain biking either, no, no. Paved trails! Read More →

Food & Drink, Links

Parts & Labor: My latest food obsession

2 Written by: | Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 2:48pm

Photo by Parts & Labor

I rarely talk about my MOST favorite anything – beer, cocktail, restaurant…or even chicken (but, let’s be honest, it’s Millie.) But last year, I went on the record about my favorite restaurant. It was PABU. Most of my friends were not surprised about that…I was there almost every week. It was not just because of the creative cocktails Nick would make me (I love when a bartender just mixes up something and says, this is something I’m working on…I want you to try it.) Not just the freshness of the fish or those damn happy spoons. Don’t you miss happy spoons? It was more than any of the food or beverage options – it was the sum of all of it, and…the people. The people made it. And when PABU closed, I actually received texts, emails and messages on social media asking if it was true, was I okay…and joking “oh dear God, where will you eat?” Enter Parts & Labor.

Parts & Labor is a lot like PABU in that I like a lot of different aspects there. It’s run by the folks at Woodberry Kitchen and they really know what they’re doing – everything from the decor to food & beverage to the staffing, top notch. First, the butcher shop out front is fantastic – they break down whole animals, wasting nothing. The shop is led by George Marsh and his band of young, enthusiastic butchers (yes, there are a LOT of mustaches, beards and cool aprons…) and the cheese buyer is Kari Nye – and her cheese selections so far, to me, have spot on. I have enjoyed the OH SO weird beer washed Talleginator and so many others since they opened in April. You can also get locally made products in the shop (open 11:00 a.m. – 7:00 p.m.) and at lunchtime, fantastic sandwiches. Highly recommend the pit beef and pastrami – and so do a bunch of their local chef fans. When a chef says “get the pastrami,” you get the pastrami. (But I really also loved the pit beef.)


The beer. This may be what I love most (wait, no…it’s really  the meat.) But the 20 draft beer selections – many local – are all interesting and diverse. You can get small pours of multiple beers so that you can try a few and you can also get full pints, of course. On my last visit a few weeks ago (probably visit #7 or 8) I tried the Brewers Art Charm City Sour, Six Point Brewery’s Apollo Kristallweizen and Frey’s Brewing (Mt. Airy, MD) Farmers Armor Saison. I love trying new things, so every time I go I tend to get the small pours of something I haven’t had yet…after a libation (cocktail) to start. The Remingtonian has been my favorite so far – whiskey, maple, house & orange bitters, hop rinse. I am such a whiskey fan these days…it goes with so many things. The quality of the bar program at Parts & Labor is no accident…it is run by Jayce Flickinger, a quiet, smart, extremely talented beverage pro. Oh, I also should remind you that they have growlers that you can fill with your favorite beer on tap and take home. And if you’re like me and would like a slightly smaller amount, get a growlerette – it’s only  32 ounces, as opposed to the usual 64.



The menu is split into several sections – snacks, salt house, salads, steaks and more. I tend to focus on the steaks…I am a total carnivore. But I went recently with a vegetarian friend and she was pretty happy, too – feasting on what might be my favorite side right now, potatoes grilled on the hearth, along with a salad, braised greens and roasted elephant garlic. All delicious, but let’s get back to the meat.

Of course, there is also charcuterie – coppa, bologna, andouille, sopressata and more…all made in-house and the list ever-changing. The steaks are mainly cuts that you don’t as often see on menus, like culotte, tri-tip, barrel, etc…and the menu and your server will help you decide based on what sorts of cuts of meat you usually enjoy. I need to stop here and give love to the steak sauce and herb relish that accompanies the steaks. The server tried to take my empty plate…and it still had herb relish on it. I looked at him (he had waited on me before so we had a good rapport…) and without a word, he brought me some bread for dipping into this insanity on my plate. Eyes closed, I dipped that hearth-toasted goodness right into the tasty green puddle on my plate. Yep, now…now, you may take my plate.



I am not a huge dessert fan (I know, weird, right?) but many of my dining pals have shared bites of their desserts with me…most recently my friend Sean and his daughter shared their brown butter blondie and I was pretty happy to be partaking in that.


My advice…go and try lots of different things. Share. Let your server guide you (I always did that at PABU and it never failed) and try to get a table in one of the side booths, or sit at the bar. The stools on the communal tables are not the most comfortable to me, and in the booths it’s a little quieter. And, at the bar, well…you always get the best service at the bar – anywhere.

If you go to Parts & Labor, you just might see me there. Just ask James, the manager. I’m a little obsessed.

Photo by Jim Burger

Earlier this week I wrote about the very sad loss of my friend Nelson Carey, owner of Grand Cru at Belvedere Square. Tomorrow, the market will have a special fundraising event in conjunction with the regular Friday Summer Sounds at the Square. Here’s the info:

What better way to pay tribute to the late Nelson Carey – a man who devoted his life to food and wine – than by creating and relishing his favorite food (surprisingly, a hot dog!). This Friday, August 1, from 6 to 9 p.m., during the weekly free Belvedere Square Summer Sounds concert, Nelson’s fellow merchants will each cook up a special tribute – a version of his beloved frankfurter – that customers can enjoy in exchange for a suggested $5 donation to a new fund to help finance the college education of Paige Carey, his daughter, who is headed to art school in New York next fall. Nelson’s friends and fans can also make a donation online at the concert or on their own at Donations will be accepted throughout the month of August. It seems only appropriate that Nelson’s memory, his love of food and wine, as well as his generosity to customers and colleagues, be honored at the Square which he helped grow and thrive – and where he, in turn, achieved his dream for a business that would be a gathering place for the community.

Food & Drink, Wine School

Beverage and the Beach

0 Written by: | Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 1:30pm


We are at the beach. It is my best time. It’s a time for arguing over departure times for half an hour before any move is made toward the door. It’s a time for too many cooks in the kitchen, a dozen (or two dozen) people at the table, endless chips and salsa, discussions of gluten allergies, paddleboard surfing, and when the looming storm will dissipate. It’s time for glasses of cold things, beer and interesting cocktails discovered in newspapers and wine constantly opened and served in whatever glasses are available.

Mostly at the beach we drink coffee, and water, and collectively as a massive family unit we seem to strive to invent better, different, and more efficient ways to carry those on and into our person. The water was in bottles first, then frozen bottles, then pouches to reuse. The coffee was in a pot used again and again in the mornings, and I usually arrived just as the first pot had baked long enough to taste more like it came from the corner diner than the boutique coffee shop. As the caffeinators grew in number, the coffee pot was left in the dust of a dozen teenagers and twenty-somethings and grown-ups clattering their empty mugs on the counter every morning, stumbling through a whirr of bleary-eyed muttering and spitting. One of those instant, brew-a-cup machines took its place and though the coffee is mediocre, and the method confounding, it has saved our mornings. The early risers rebounded conversationally to political debate and literary philosophy around the breakfast table.  

The first summer I worked at the wine shop, I decided I was in charge of providing libations to the masses at the Jersey Shore for our annual gathering of Callahans. I recall selecting bottles, a case, each one something both functional and interesting to talk about. Vinho Verde, for sure, some tasty Italian reds I was drinking plenty of myself, some inexpensive and not-Chardonnay whites for my ABC Aunt (that is, Anything But Chardonnay). I remember an afternoon with that aunt the previous year, nibbling nuts and cheese on the porch with a glass of cold Pinot Grigio thinking, “Is it five o’clock? Can I do this?” I wondered if, in fact, this was my destiny. This is GREAT, I thought.  

The following summer I pulled up to the beach house with five cases of wine in my car. Callahans don’t play. 

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Catch of the Day, Little Italy

Little Italy’s Open Air Film Fest

0 Written by: | Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 1:00pm

Film Fest

catch of the day fish (2)You’ve got to hand it to the folks who invented pizza and pasta—they know what makes a good time and what makes a party. Just as a traditional Italian meal includes course upon course of meticulously crafted food, Little Italy’s summer outdoor film series offers so much more than just the chance to plop down for a flick. In Little Italy, the evening begins with a stroll through the neighborhood and (if you’re smart) a movie night dinner special at one of its amazing restaurants. Many even offer carryout for the occasion. Then there’s live music at 7pm and a film at 9. So we can easily guarantee you’ll be full by the time you head home. Read More →

Culture, Movie Reviews

Boy, Oh Boy, What a Movie!

1 Written by: | Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 11:55am


We’ve been thinking about posting movie reviews for some time now, so when IFC Films asked us to review Boyhood, we figured it was a sign.  Our writer C.G. Dunn gives us his take.

At first glance, director Richard Linklater’s filmography seems like a scattershot list of titles. It includes the kid-movie classic School of Rock, the Before Sunrise trilogy of romantic dramas, the 90′s McConaughey action flick The Newton Boys, and a lot in between. The only element that seems to tie these films together is the witty, world-weary sensibility of the director. His latest, Boyhood, which opens at The Charles on Friday, shares the same sensibility, but this time he returns to familiar ground in a somewhat biographical growing-up-Texan story, while at the same time reaching new heights, high above anything he has attempted before.

The film’s title is also its synopsis, but its concept doesn’t reveal itself until you learn the details of the production. Linklater and the cast and crew shot the film for a few days a year, every year for 12 years, allowing us to see the characters and actors age in sync before our eyes. It’s a marvelous technical achievement, but it would be merely a gimmick if it weren’t in the service of a great film.

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Featured, Lifeline, Money & Power

Are Credit Cards Really the Biggest Issue for Md. Taxis?

0 Written by: | Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 11:02am

Md. taxis

In 2008, I needed a cab ride to the airport. I had just moved to Baltimore, so I asked my friends which taxi company they would recommend. They all had the same answer: none of them. “Whichever one you call, there’s a 50-50 chance they’ll actually pick you up,” one friend told me. That ballpark figure was borne out pretty well by my subsequent experiences.

When it comes to hailing a cab — in the few places in Baltimore where that is a possibility — I’ve found fares to be so inconsistent, I’ve occasionally negotiated the price before setting foot in the vehicle.

The Maryland Public Service Commission recently ordered that all taxis in the state must have working credit card machines by the end of the year. But according to James Briggs at Baltimore Business Journal, that’s not all it will take to bring Maryland cabs up to snuff. Read More →

Featured, Schools

A Sneak Peek at Johns Hopkins’ New Website

0 Written by: | Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 10:50am

If you go to right now, you may find yourself faced with information overload. The current homepage includes more than 240 links–which means lots of text–and a slightly stodgy blue and black color scheme. After the successful overhaul of the university’s logo last year, Hopkins decided that the next big project worth a redesign was this website. It was time, university administrators and communications staff decided, to give the school a brand new front door.

The new site won’t go live until the school year starts (so, in late August), but to whet your appetite, Hopkins has released a YouTube preview of the new look. Here are a few highlights:

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Roland Park, Shop Local, Sponsored Post

Summer Shopping at The Village of Cross Keys – Red Door Spa Shades of Summer Event

0 Written by: | Thursday, Jul 31, 2014 10:00am

Don’t miss the Summer Sales Event  starting tomorrow at  Red Door Spa Shades of Summer Event  August 1st & August 2nd from 10am-6pm


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Recent Comments

Parts & Labor: My latest food obsession

"The way your parents (or any of us old fogies) can enjoy modern restaurants and hear you...

BaltimoreGal (@BaltimoreGal)
Parts & Labor: My latest food obsession

"1. YES. The Remingtonian. Fabulous. 2. The steak is perfection. Not too pricey, just...

Chris Frederick
Boy, Oh Boy, What a Movie!

"Great launch! Hope we see more reviews!

Cleavage, Cleavage, Cleavage

"As usual---funny and poignant all at once, my favorite kind of writing. Just wonderful!

Cleveland Browns Fan Desecrates Art Modell’s Grave

"A somewhat appropriate reaction for a thief who was honored and lauded





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