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About ol_ironstomach

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    Wunderpus photogenicus
  • Birthday January 27

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    western 'burbs, MD

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  1. FWIW, the version at Masterpiece in Duluth, GA (“eggplant with chili powder and pepper ash powder”) is superb. Then again, chef LIU Rui (two-time JBF semifinalist for Best Chef Southeast) was a master chef in his own right, before immigrating to the US and working for Chang at Tasty China.
  2. ol_ironstomach

    LA Food Trucks

    Evidently we didn’t walk far enough to find the Jonathan Gold-approved Mariscos Jalisco truck, settling instead for the Mariscos 4 Vientos truck. But dang, that shrimp taco (“taco dorado de camaron”) is addictive. Would go out of way to eat again.
  3. In case anyone missed it: Cava Group closes its $300M purchase of Zoe’s Kitchen
  4. I am loath to quote in its entirety Jeff's Seasonal Update, mailed last week to Glen Manor's case club list, but these two excerpts about the 2018 growing season stand out: Of the non-red wines, Jeff writes that they did manage to harvest the SB, PM, and enough red blocks for the Morales Rosé. For the moment, GM is preparing the 2017 reds for release. If you've seen the very steep HH parcel and followed Jeff's efforts to make wine "in the vineyard" (2014 Virginia Grower of the Year), you'll understand that it wasn't merely fruit that was lost to Florence, but also a tremendous amount of labor. I don't know what the loss of the 2018 red crop will mean for their bottom line in one to two years' time, but I'm sure that the continuing support of their fans will be appreciated in the coming year.
  5. ol_ironstomach

    Ginger Beer & Ginger Ale

    I would think that the first problem would be finding a ginger beer anything like Rachel’s to begin with. Her varieties are flavorful, but also very atypically dry.
  6. Firefly Hill growers were set to harvest Tuesday morning; arrived to find vines picked. "Winery Reports Overnight Theft of Grape Harvest" by Mike Gangloff on roanoke.com
  7. ol_ironstomach

    DR Summer picnic -7/29/18 Noon to 5ish

    Regrettably, I’m not going to be able to attend after all. I was very much looking forward to this revival of a wonderful community tradition, and to meeting the people behind the avatars, but since Sunday a flurry of surprise problems with three different vehicles has set me back by days and demolished my picnic plans. I hope to see you all at the next one.
  8. I find this description surprising, because G&M’s crabcakes (and I had one just last week) are (1) not blue crab, and (2) use considerably more filler than a truly minimalist crabcake, despite an abundance of jumbo lump meat. One notices the cracker meal binding the relatively bland meat, unlike say Faidley’s lump crabcakes, or River Falls’. Enjoyable, reliable, full of charm, a favorite of the people around Linthicum, but not really striving for crabcake excellence IMHO.
  9. Helpful tip: when it comes to "prep", having a bidet or washlet toilet seat is pretty much the best thing ever.
  10. ol_ironstomach


    Hear, hear.
  11. ol_ironstomach

    Luggage and Suitcases

    What era/line was it from? Pre-2000, their bags were tough. Nowadays, I wouldn't spend the money on anything but their Alpha line, and IMHO the Briggs features are now better. ETA: I should clarify that I'm talking about B&R's "Baseline" line; their "Transcend" offerings seem to use similar fabrics, but lighter-duty frame construction.
  12. ol_ironstomach

    Luggage and Suitcases

    There's an old joke ("Questionable Answers for Job-Jocks") in which the interviewer asks "where do you want to be in 5 years?" and "what do you feel is most important to success in our firm?", and the newly-minted Booz Allen tyro's answer is, respectively, "in an airplane" and "a large suitcase". Among soft-sides, the classic heavy hitters are: Tumi and Hartmann, in part for their once-formidable worldwide customer service. I would add B&R. You won't necessarily find larger diameter wheels in this group, but they've always used better bearings, harder wearing fabrics, and provided better seam protection and scuff protection along the roller handle and lower rear frame. In the next tier, I'd say Travelpro, Eagle Creek, Victorinox, and many others. Then the better generics. Then the rest. YMMV.
  13. ol_ironstomach

    Mid-Century Modern Furniture

    All good reccs. Donnelly's pieces will be in the finest condition, and priced to match. Modern Mobler is a personal favorite; the Georgia Ave location is larger, but I think they tend to put their most interesting wares out in the Kensington showroom, so you really do need to visit both. Peg Leg has to do a lot with a little space, and I think their acquisition style is more eclectic, but they also have a bunch of MCM tchotchkes that the other two don't carry at all. FWIW, should you find yourself in Atlanta GA, pay a visit to RetroPassion21. The owner buys MCM in Europe and ships containers over a few times a year. And while you won't find too many of the famous Danish makers that everyone else carries, she favors German and English MCM makers you probably won't find elsewhere. And other anonymous items that fit the bill. We loaded up on a couple of teak floor lamps very cheaply; they needed a bit of rewiring and refinishing but look great now. Sadly, Mid Century Salvage in Charlotte NC is apparently no more.
  14. ol_ironstomach

    Luggage and Suitcases

    I, for one, find myself liking Briggs & Riley more and more each time I acquire a piece. Once the poor man's substitute for Tumi, they keep evolving clever improvements to their bags, from the ratcheting expansion/compression system to the tethered piggyback strap, and are arguably the innovators in the category. Unlike Tumi, they've retained a lifetime repair policy across their line. The bags have become significantly lighter over the years, albeit at the cost of some toughness. If there's anything that annoys me, it's that the ratchet system cannot be rigidly locked into position to force an expanded bag to stay oversized to create airspace around fragile contents. My earliest piece, not quite 20 years old, is a fully-framesheeted tank of a rollaboard, and so long as I'm on a carrier with no carryon weight limit, it's my go-to for getting bottles home safely. +1 on Eagle Creek pieces. Their bags are a bit light-duty for my tastes, but their packing cubes and suit/shirt folders are still great for internal organization.