Thursday, December 30, 2010

Denise Whiting – Dumpster Diva

Baltimore Sun editor John McIntyre, self-proclaimed Royalist and contrarian opined from his Sun blog bully pulpit that the lowly  commoners are jealous of Denise Whiting's retro-cartoon-trash megalomania. I think he might be right. How hot is this self-proclaimed dumpster diving diva? Notice that the fake "hon" accent is turned off here but the high-pitched diva screech is up to 11.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Nick and Nora Go To a Protest

 The dynamic duo of Owl Meat Gravy and gal pal Switchblade Kitty believe that earnestness causes cancer. With that in mind we embarked (late as always, SK!) for Hampden.

Taking our cue from Nick and Nora of the Thin Man movies, we believe that champagne or martinis make every event better and helps you solve crimes.

 Sorry that it took so long to post these, but Blogger won't let me upload photos this week. I had to go through four passes via Flickr. Damn software!

 We arrive at the scene of the crime. Switchblade Kitty with plastic cup of champagne and a bottle of Cook's finest. Because it's not a protest without champagne.

SK posing in front of the comically large display of police presence, five cars. And we're off!

Posted by Picasa 

 Someone has their car decorated with various not-HON logos. 

 Attila the Hon badgering the crowd one by one.

 Bad photo.

 This girl was WAY too serious. More champagne, Switchblade Kitty! Is that the City of Baltimore flag? I don't get it.

 Here comes the best sign.

 Craptastic Hontown window display.

 Here he comes

 Earnest girl in homemade t-shirt etc.

 This guy was really funny. Note how most people are smiling or laughing. I guess I didn't have my John McIntyre curmudgeon lens on.

 Pretty girl smiling with lame sign. John McIntyre, where are the frowny people?

 Parting shot from out getaway car. A successful hit and run protest. Except for earnest homemade t-shirt girl, the crowd was jovial and having a great time on a very cold day. SK and I flee the scene for High Topps in Timonium to watch the Ravens and check out the b/Sun "party". FAIL. The "party" seems to be discounted wings and crap lite beers. Hit and run, baby. And we're off!

 We land at Nacho Mamas in Canton. Check out the menu. Hahahaha! Scunny mocking the whole thing by daring Denise to sue him. Way to go. A perfect end to our first hit and run day of fun.Then it's home to build a blanket fort and smash wine glasses in the fireplace. 

Don't forget to check out other posts here including the video we made of Denise Whiting's new venture the CRACK CAFE™ 

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Keyword Analysis Fun

Statcounter reports that people found this blog using these search engine words (for the past week):

#Hits Perc. Search Term
40 Hits 54.05% grackle
10 Hits 13.51% owl meat gravy
5 Hits 6.76% grackles
5 Hits 6.76% owl meat apocrypha
4 Hits 5.41% owl meat gravy blog
2 Hits 2.70% rollicky bread bun recipes
1 Hit 1.35% "cafe hon"
1 Hit 1.35% autopilot airplane
1 Hit 1.35% cafe hon denise whiting
1 Hit 1.35% crack cafe whiting
1 Hit 1.35% denise whiting owl meat
1 Hit 1.35% owl meat
1 Hit 1.35% owl meat blogspot
1 Hit 1.35% squagel

What is the deal with grackles? I want to meet the person who Googled "rollicky bread bun recipes".

Friday, December 17, 2010

Denise Whiting, owner of Cafe Hon™, opens ghetto-fabulous theme joint the Crack Cafe™ (version 2.0)

Version 2.0 has much better animation, some rewrites, and lots of sound effects and background sound. Dig it!


Retweet or Share on Facebook to spread the word.

Denise Whiting, owner of Cafe Hon™, opens ghetto-themed Crack Cafe™

 The Owl Meat Continuum has created this for your entertainment.

An Owl Meat Gravy™ Production.

The size of the box is better on YouTube. Check our YouTube channel here. 

The pirate emo thing is good. The other two are old experiements with lame free software and photos and video from a $6 digital camera the size of a half of a Chicken McNugget.

That's a wrap! Shut it down!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Today's Trademark Infringement Fun

I'll let others deal with the Denise Whiting Hon-icide™ debacle for now. For now. Who knew that trademarks could be such a galvanizing issue?

Your move, Baltimore City Schools.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Java Zombies & The Baltimore Farmers' Market

Below is a rant on kids, strollers, and slurpy annoying coffee narcissists at the Baltimore Farmer's Market. Originally posted on the Baltimore Sun's Dining at Large blog. Reprinted here with minor revisions. Damn, I sure was irritable then.


Jenna, just take a look at the post on kids in restaurants from earlier this year that spilled over onto the mommy blog. It was a steel cage death match with few parents coming out alive.

I think babies are just useless. Well they are. Give me a puppy any day. Kids as accessories annoy me too. Depending upon my mood, people in general annoy me. Wasn't it Sartre who said "Hell is other people."?

If I were in the mood to rant, which I almost am, given the sore muscles from doing actual physical labor yesterday that didn't involve a keyboard, a mouse, or a wine glass, uhhhh...

Set phasers to RANT.

Yeah, most of the time when I go to the market I'm not so much in the Bon Marché kind of strolling mood like my ex-girlfriend used to dig. Any market, any day. Stroll stroll stroll. The Paris bird market was her fave. I'm a freakin' laser guided maniac sometimes. I want apples, I want bok choy and I want to get hell out of there.

So what bugs me more than strollers, because I can see them on my radar and evade? It's the ankle dragging freakin coffee people. Yeah, and that's probably some of you. You know who you are. Mmmmm..... slurpity slurp slurp, ahhhh, mmmm, shuffle stutter-step stop linger start stop wandering in your addict's haze and narcissistic dark roasted egoism. Walking two or more across because if nobody hears your mouth-gasms they just aren't that good.

The problem other than my lifelong hatred of the coffee HABIT (not coffee, it's the celebratory ritual of lame addiction that irks me, damn, if you're going to get that worked up start chasing the dragon, swirl into a deep opium fog thinking of crickets and chanting all the vowels.) So I can't avoid you and I can't get to the stand with the hot farm girls. This is about food and an appreciation of tawny young women who rise at dawn and tear things from the ground for my nourishment and gustatory pleasure, get out of my way you poseur weekend divas with your khaki dreams and public onanistic mouth rapture. Gentlemen set your phasers to vaporize, I want my purple habaneros, a sunny smile from pepper girl, and in my mind-kill-zone there is just a puddle of non-fat milk java that is the stain that you will be. Slurp on that.

Good morning world. 8>O

Posted by: Owl Meat KillSwitchEngaged | September 16, 2008 9:45 AM

Chiu on This – Worst Sashimi Ever

Lobster Girl and I had a late Saturday and lazy Sunday. We missed brunch, but made it out of the house for an early dinner. I wanted sushi, but didn't feel like heading to my beloved Minato. I decided to give Chiu's Sushi a second chance, since it's only a few blocks away in Horrible East.

Big mistake. Trust your first impressions.

First of all, the kabuki theater atmosphere with female employees dressed in kimonos is lame. The room looks like it was designed by someone who had seen The Mikado on acid.

The best way to judge any sushi place is the sashimi plate or omakase. None of the expensive stunt rolls. So I see they have a sashimi dinner and deluxe sashimi dinner. Deluxe!

First up is the hot towel. Ow, ow, .. ah. Then some hot sake. Done. They brought the usual miso soup which was okay, but like everything there it was overly ornate in a non-functional way. I don't need a cup, a lid and a goofy American plastic spoon. Japanese drink the soup from the cup.

Then there was a weird "salad" which was iceberg lettuce and a strange clumpy orange dressing. Fail.

I got the deluxe sashimi for $27. The deluxe model has salmon, tuna, and yellowtail. That is it. The fish was cut way way too thick; it was an unpleasantly large mouthful. The quality of the tuna was the lowest possible. It was bright red with no fat at all, signifying frozen and low grade cut. The salmon was adequate, but had a weird foreign taste sometimes like it sat in the refrigerator next to turpentine. The yellowtail was adequate.

The accompanying bowl of sushi rice was poorly prepared.  I make better rice at home.

A sashimi plate is an opportunity for the chef to shine and to order it is a compliment to the chef. The artless slabs of fish on the platter was sad. Did I mention we were the only customers there? Three kinds of fish on the deluxe platter? Three? How sad is the regular version?

They did use real mizuna leaves. The gari (pickled ginger) was disgusting. Obviously store bought (hey, I make my own, it's not hard) and dyed with repulsive candy-like flavor from some kind of sweetener. Blech.

They also wrap & rewrap their fish in plastic wrap which is a huge foul according to Alex Tran, the owner of Minato. It traps weird flavors and bacteria.

Lobster Girl was happy with her goofy makis and slathered them in soy sauce and wasabi. That's what she likes, so that's what she gets.

I have a theory that sushi bars are like chiropractors. Everybody thinks theirs is the best. When I hear people say that Chiu's has good sushi, I wonder what they think bad sushi is. So, remember that when people brag up their chiro, keep in mind that they keep going back over and over and never get fixed.

Finally, the room was ridiculously noisy, with three separate LOUD conversations among employees in Chinese. Just because you think we can't understand you, doesn't mean we can't hear you. And if you look at my girlfriend and say "dee oh lay, ... dai bo". I know what you mean and yes they are real.


Helliday Reboot for the Apocrypha

Welcome to the Hellidays reboot of the Owl Meat Apocrypha. Usually the time between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day is a tedious depressing period. There's Thanksgiving, my birthday, Christmas, and New Year's Eve. Kwanzaa and Hannukah don't add anything positive either. My usual strategy has been to yell at the TV, drink bourbon, clean my guns, and stare forlornly into the middle distance while arguing with imaginary ex-girlfriends. Not this year.

This year I am going to be socially promiscuous and accept any and invitations to do things, especially new things. I am going to seek out social opportunities and enjoy them all. In short, I am embarking on a radical agenda of enjoying life. So I will try to blog about fun things around town and forgo poetry about food and death.

Let's go!

Play me out, Walt Whitman

I sing the body electric,
The armies of those I love engirth me and I engirth them,
They will not let me off till I go with them, respond to them,
And discorrupt them, and charge them full with the charge of the soul.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The Future of the Apocrypha

At the moment we don't really care about the blog format. At the moment. Right now, we are putting most of our effort into the (Mobbie Award-winning, stupid whore) Twitter feed @OwlMeatGravy. If you don't use Twitter, now you have a reason to. You don't need to tweet your sandwich experiences and traffic woes, just sit back and be entertained by @OwlMeatGravy, @LordMarmalade, @BadThanksgiving, @HeardAtMyBar and @BobEhrlichWigs.

The staff and interns at GravyTron thank you for your support. Have a jarpy day.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Anger Is An Energy

Dear Blogware,
I hate you. You suck. I make formatting changes and then you ignore them or change them. If it wasn't such a pain, I would pack up and move to WordPress. You're making me look bad. Do you have a drinking problem?

Get me the head of Klaus Kinski!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

My iPad Has Been Drinking (Not Me)

Domo Arigato, Mr. Brewboto. 
My iPad drank my Stella. Seriously, I'm not drunk. It's a software glitch.
Welcome to the brave new world of techno-drinking. Strap on your frackin' holobands and board Future Swerve 2010.
Brewing is hop-deep in unseen technology. The only technology drinkers need is a bottle opener (sometimes) and a glass. Darth Glass is the ubiquitous shaker bottom masquerading as a pint glass. Ethan Cox, a Certified Cicerone (beer sommelier) praises them for, "holding liquid in a consistent shape and not leaking."

Glasses vary at deluxe joints like Brewer's Art. Huzzah. Sam Adams steps it up with the Ultimate Boston Lager® glass. Behold laser etching to promote effervescence, a lip that delivers malty flavors to tongue receptors, and a corpulent torso that captures aromatic essences. Too bad it wasn't designed for a better beer.

Sam Adams' design is obsessive but laudable. Miller, on the other hand, has delivered moron technology. Meet the Miller Lite vortex bottle. Because you need a rifled beer neck to coax it out?
I saw a robot cocktail system in Panama. Press the Cuba Libre button and it kerplunks ice, rum, and Coke into a glass. Perfect pour, no theft. One flaw -- only rail liquors were hooked up. 
There is a German model available called The Qube -- Die Cocktailmaschine. I'm not so sure about having a really smart German robot around. I don't want it organizing a putsch with the FryDaddy and InSinkErator. Technologie über alles. iCaramba.
On the non-robot front, who doesn't love a Japanese monkey bartender?

Watch out, Germany, your old Axis pal is coming. Konnichiwa, Asahi beerbot.
Mother's in Federal Hill had a system that dispensed beer from table taps and updated your tab. My email inquiry received no response. Maybe their monkey bartenders are downloading monkey porn.
Geeks at Yelp created an iPad application, the KegBot, that runs a self-serve keg system and tracks individual users. It's mega-geeky-cool and suitable for your frat house or brew pub ... beerus ex machina.
That's all for Tipsy Techday. Now tell us what drinking technology you love and what you hate. Bonus points for technology you make up. As the president of my alma mater DeVry College of Fixing Stuff said, "If you can dream it, someone at MIT can build it."

Photo source: Getty Images 

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Rock Me Amadeo's - an extended review of Osteria da Amedeo in Little Italy

Below is the unedited version of the review I did for the Baltimore Sun's Midnight Sun blog. Above is the original artwork.

Osteria da Amedeo

Psst ... I found an oasis among the dining hubbub of Little Italy. Don't tell anyone.
Osteria da Amedeo glided in under the radar a few months ago. It's called a wine bar, but it isn't really. The last osteria in the neighborhood was an Italian sandwich shop. A true osteria is an Italian tavern that serves simple food and wine. That describes Amedeo's perfectly.
So much of Amedeo's charm is about what it is not. Not an oenophile snobfest. No oo'ing, cooing, or gurgling over monster goblets of Chateau Loutre Songeuse.
If you wanna get your Jäger on with your brosephs or compare body piercings with your skate-punk buds, this is not the place. Wanna troll the skankosphere? Not here. Wanna slip into a smooth jazz coma with an appletini? Nope. It's a normal bar that feels of the neighborhood, but offers something complementary to the LI scene.
It has a relaxed European feel that you rarely see here. Americans usually get that wrong with gimmicks, forced vibe, and cliché decoration. There are no gimmicks or affectation here.
Fellow Little Italians said I should check it out. "Where Pepino's was?" I asked. Nah. I put it off because I couldn't see how they could do much with the dive bar that was there.
I dropped in and was blown away by the transformation. Then I did something selfish -- I kept it to myself for a while.
The physical changes are stunning. The walls painted with nicotine and a grim black ceiling are gone. A beautiful white tin ceiling has been restored. There is much exposed brick and handsome dark wood. The space seems much bigger. There is a charming little back room suitable for conspiracies, trysts, and hullabaloos.
On my first visit the owner was bartending. He was friendly, unpretentious, and laid back. The three regular bartenders have a similar demeanor.
The crowd, never throbbing, is skewed younger than the hip-impaired bocce ballers you might imagine. Conversation happens at Amedeo's and for me that's better than sport X on a giant TV. People pop in for a drink and move on home or to another destination in the neighborhood.
This is not a tourist joint. It's fun to meet tourists in Little Italy restaurant bars -- until it's not. The question, "Are you a local?" makes me cry inside a little. Why? Because it often means that people will offer cliché inquiries like, "You don't look Italian. How can you live here?" Oh, Hank from Sheboygan, not tonight.
The scene at Amedeo's is whatever people bring to it on a given night. On various nights I watched Roy Halladay throw a no-hitter, listened to a woman talk about her baby's enormous head and Michigan or was it Minnesota football, ran into some old friends, went on a grappa safari, etc.
The wine selection is respectable, focusing on affordable Italian wines.
They plan to keep the food selection basic. Panini are $7, a plate of olives and cheese is $4, and bruschetta is $4. There are seven panini, with creative combinations of imported Italian meats and cheeses, fresh mozzarella, olive tapenade, baby field greens, tomato, and turkey. They use an excellent rustic Italian bread that is baked specially for them.
I recommend the Italiano or Parmacotta panini. I was never a panini fan, but these are delicious.
On a recent visit I did a tour of Italian digestifs and grappas. Digestifs, unlike apéritifs, are served after a meal to promote digestion. Because they often have a strong bitter herbal taste, they are an acquired taste. I love them.
Welcome to the Bitter Zone -- Lasciate ogne speranza, voi ch'entrate.
Limoncello is a very sweet Italian liqueur, traditionally made from Sorrento lemons. The Sicilian limoncello at Amedeo's had an uncommon creamy taste and texture. Definitely the best I have ever tasted.
Cynar is an Italian bitter liqueur made from 13 herbs and plants, with artichoke as the dominant flavor. It's very artichokey. I like it, but it's an acquired taste.
Fernet-Branca is an amaro, a bitter, aromatic liquor. Fernets are made from herbs and spices including myrrh, rhubarb, chamomile, cardamom, aloe, and saffron. It's a mule kick of bitter pleasure. You will not forget this flavor.
Ramazzotti Amaro is a medium style amaro. Very good.
Amaro Averna is produced in Sicily. Herbs, roots, and citrus peel create a complex sweet, thick, smooth bitterness.
Grappa is a brandy made from pomace -- what's left after grapes are pressed for wine. Bad grappa is often justly compared to kerosene. These grappas are good to excellent.
Banfi -- smooth and reminiscent of many Balkan brandies like raki/rakia/rakie. It even resembles Slivovitz in aroma. It tastes clean and uncomplicated. True grappa.
Alexander -- has a distinctive smell that evokes immature wheat and fresh human blood. I know how that sounds; think of biting your cheek, not vampirism. Decent taste.
Nonino -- A pleasant seductive aroma of exotic fruits. Passion fruit? Watermelon Starburst? Much smoother taste. This is a real treat, exceptional.
The owner said that he is planning to increase his stock of these eccentric liquors. I hope he does.
-- A printed list of wines by the bottle and glass. Currently they are going through a process of natural selection, listening to customers before making a set list.
-- Wi-Fi -- not essential, but it would be nice. I was told that it is coming.
-- Some better beers. I know it's not a beer bar, but how about an IPA at least. Until then Moretti la Rossa will have to do.
Tourists seem to love Amedeo's because they feel it's the total Little Italy experience -- rubbing elbows with locals and getting that East Coast ethnic experience that you don't get at the Olive Garden in Omaha. As one said to me, "I always wanted to hang with some pie-zones."
Amedeo's is part of a gentle metamorphosis in Little Italy. Many people have said, "The neighborhood really needed it." I agree.  The addition of Isabella's, Max's Empanadas, and now Amedeo's adds variety for residents and visitors.
Amedeo's is the sparrow on my windowsill. Not flashy, loud, or exotic, but its presence makes my world a little better.
Osteria da Amedeo
301 S. Exeter Street at Fawn Street, one block east of High Street in Little Italy
Monday - Friday - 4:30 p.m. - 1 a.m.
Saturday 11:30 - 1 a.m.
Closed Sundays
They may be open for lunch on weekdays in the future.

Bungalos and hullabaloos

After months of neglect I returned to the Apocrypha today to find that the software has been improved. It automatically changed all me text to Hindi. Really? What kind of crazy default is that? Is it some Google programmer in Indian getting retribution for the horrible TV show Outsourced

It also seems to not work with my Opera browser anymore.

Namaste, already.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Resurrection Ale Photoshop Contest

Here are some entries for the Midnight Sun contest from me and several friends that didn't make the cut. Lot's of geeky fun had by all.

Two for the road

"Looks like we're gonna need a bigger boat ... and some more beer!"

Sam Sessa sez "Don't get in the shark tank at the National Aquarium." Too late.

I got my mind on my Rez and my Rez on my mind.

Because a drunk baby in a Trump wig is funny.

The movie I wish they would make.

Because monkeys are funny


Christian Jurassic Park with beer

Why not?

That explains why they marched that far

Ganesh, the best bartender ever

Vanity shot

Behold, Mighty Zeus! Keeper of the beer