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pras

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About pras

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    hammerhead
  • Birthday 11/27/1977

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    Gaithersburg, MD

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  1. I am amazed I never knew this place existed and I can walk from my office in about 5 minutes. My office buys lunch on the last two days of the month, and today's choice by the office manager was M&N. When I looked at the menu, I was amazed. Choices range from pizza, to wings, to sandwiches, to curry. No pork is served here so anything which you would assume to be pork is either beef (pepperoni) or turkey (ham and bacon, etc.). Although I was intrigues by the spicy curry chicken pizza, the price was outside of the limit (you can only get this pie in a large). I settled on the spicy Szechuan chicken pizza (extra spicy). This pizza is no joke. I can't even explain the flavors, but they work and the spice level is high, but adds a good depth for me. Next time, I have to try the curry chicken. BTW, I am told that the other India fare on the menu is very good.
  2. Xi'an Gourmet, opened in the ashes of the former Bob's space. Tim Carman wrote about it in the Post today and seems to like it. Has Anyone tried it yet?
  3. Where did you purchase your kitchen countertops from and were you satisfied?
  4. The brewer was telling me about a contraption he has at his house to maintain temperature during fermentation--a temperature probe which also activates a freezer that kicks on when temperature rises. He said there is a new glycol home brewer rig that costs about $400, which would be better and based upon the price, he may consider it. As another aside, we discussed the hazy IPA rage, and his answer was brewing a pilot batch of glitter beer with purple glitter (in honor of the Ravens). Not to worry, he used food grade glitter and "pitched" the beer at a marketing meeting--needless to say his "pitch" didn't go very far!
  5. Yes, that is true, however another way to think about it, is that ales ferment at room temperatures, while lager ferments at lower temperatures. I had the privilege to guest brew (or maybe you would call it help) at Flying Dog today. We brewed a kolsch on their 15 barrel pilot system (which generates 30 half kegs)(this is the size of the main system at many of the new breweries sprouting up!). The brewer that I worked with doesn't just do this because it is a job, he does it because he is an enthusiast and enjoys the science of brewing and monitoring trends, etc (he home brews on the weekend!). It is his opinion that the industry is making a turn towards more traditional styles. Also, as an aside, something I learned today was that all of their fermenting vessels are jacketed and they can pump cooled glycol through the jacket to maintain temperatures. The brewer told me that there is a need to maintain temperature to some extent in all of their fermantations be it a lager or an ale (kolsch yeast is actually a hybrid as the characteristics of the resulting beer have both lager and ale qualities).
  6. Eastern Kabob & Sweets is located in the Sugarloaf Shopping Center in Germantown. They have a buffet all the time, but I haven't tried it yet. Each of the last two times I have visited I ordered chapli. Each time it was amazing. The first time I got the beef and my friend got the chicken. Both were good, but the beef was better. It had a nice char on it which added an additional layer of flavor. The dish comes with two "patties" on a bed of rice, with shaved onion on top. The platter also comes with so stewed chickpeas and naan. It is a BARGAIN at $11.99. There is a ton of flavor in the chapli. The rice is also well seasoned and slightly spicy. Each time I ordered the dish spicy, but the heat was a bit restrained--that's okay because it was packed with flavor. As far as decor goes, it is bright and clean, with some flat screens playing Pakistani videos. The staff is nice enough. They also have some disco lights going. They are open late Thursday, Friday, and Saturday.
  7. I have been into Ear Hustle. Just completed the second season. Each episode deals with a different aspect of Prison Life at San Quentin.
  8. As I type this I wonder why I am doing so. Why do I feel the need to justify my opinion? I had a meal at G&M with my wife, daughter and dad. It was the second time I have visited. The more and more I write and read reviews on this website, I wonder what is it which makes a meal special? I have come to the conclusion, that the food is secondary. What is most important is the company, the time you had, and creating memories. I have had crab cakes at Faidley's. My memory of that was eating it out of a box before we took my mom home From Johns Hopkins after recovering from her whipple procedure (a meal never to forget). I haven't tried the cakes at River Falls though. On this wet evening, we picked my dad up at BWI from a weekend of traveling. It was his first solo trip since my mom passed away in May. He first went to Chicago to see his nephews, then to Sturbridge for my mom's cousin's wedding. We got to talk about what a good time he had. The waitress was very nice and knew how to deal with my dad's sarcasm. While I understand that the purpose of this website is to review restaurants, and the quality of the food, the company was much more important and definitely "clouded my judgment". I thought the cakes were good though. I like the taste, it was full of lump (didn't know they don't use blue crab), and I didn't note much filler. One thing is for sure, a dinner at G&M is different than one at Faidley's in Lexington Market--you don't have to fight off the rats on your way to dinner. So if all of the other elements clouded my judgment on the cakes, I apologize.
  9. pras

    Video Door Bells

    Earlier this month I installed a Nest. You need a hardwired doorbell to install. The hardest part of the installation was figuring out which circuit the doorbell was connected to. Once you figure that out, there is a guided setup which asks you how the wires are connected in your chime. Then it tells you exactly which wires to hook to which on the adapter they give you. Next you install the doorbell button at the door, then turn on. I was done in less than 30 minutes. The picture quality is really amazing. It will also connect to a google home, but it rings on the house bell also. One neat feature is that it will learn the people that come to your house often and begin identifying them by name. I live in a three story townhouse, you enter on the ground floor, but the main living space is one level up. So, for us, we can know who is at the door without having to run downstairs. You can also talk through the setup to tell someone you are on your way to the door. I was spying on my wife and daughter the other day when they were waiting for the carpool to camp. I startled them when I told my wife to sit up straight! The nest setup also is always recording, but there is a small fee to be able to access the recordings. 30 days is free, not sure if I will pay for a subscription. It's also nice to know when a package is delivered. It is pretty worthwhile for my setup.
  10. Prague is known for Pilsner which is a crisp slightly bitter style, which you may enjoy. As far as English style IPA/beer, if you are ever in Syracuse, check out Middle Ages Brewery, which makes English style Ales. You can find them in the shelf at some places outside of Syracuse, but not outside of New York State. When I was studying at Syracuse University, the most popular class was Wine and Beer Appreciation, which was on Thursday evening. (as an aside I was warned that it was a difficult class and I should take it pass/fail--this was a huge mistake. The first half of the class covered wine and I got an A. If I got an a on the wine portion, I was assured to get an A on the beer portion!!) Now, back to the story. One week featured Middle Ages Brewing. The owner showed up with a cask, and a bunch of other offerings. We first cycled through the line and each took a pump from the cask and tried it. As we discussed the other beers, he invited us to take another pump from the cask. At the end of the class, a bunch of us were milling around, not ready to leave and he said "I am bringing the cask back with me when I leave. It will either be full or it will be empty." He didn't have to explain further! I guess that I am one of the few people who can honestly say that they killed a keg in a college class for credit!
  11. Kolsch is really hard to make well. It needs to be served fresh and once poured it needs to be finished quickly (that's why in Germany, they are poured in small glasses).
  12. Had dinner here after picking my dad up from BWI. Still very good. The service was friendly, full of Baltimore charm, and the crab cakes were good. Full of lump with little filler. This place was pretty jammed on Sunday during an epic rain storm. We were seated immediately, but I am sure if it wasn't raining the wait would have been significant.
  13. Not to completely derail the thread, but last night I had my last bottle of Flying Dog Snake Oil. I post this here, because this is one of those wacky new fangled concepts--a smoky and spicy beer. Now, there is a story behind it--it uses fish peppers which were brought to the eastern shore by slaves and are still grown there today. Snake Oil refers to Spike Gjdre's hot sauce from Woodberry Kitchen which also uses fish peppers. The beer is probably not suited for most palates, and really is not what you would expect of a beer, but for whatever reason I really liked it--smoky and spicy (perhaps a bit too spicy, which is probably why I liked it). In fact, it was so "out there" that Flying Dog was giving the beer away by the case. Never-the-less, sometimes something works for one person's palate and not others.
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