Thursday, December 10, 2009

Baltimore business trip

We had our morning meeting today at Blue Moon Cafe in Baltimore. Had seen it on Diners, Drive-Ins & Dives and was excited to be able to eat somewhere that was local and non-cookie cutter-ish for a change. Most business trips have the pharma reps picking where we go and they pick the usual chain suspects. Today was a pleasant surprise. I had heard that Blue Moon's service was "brusque"... but I thought our waitress was nice and our needs were well met.

We started with a cinnamon roll which we split. It was big and sinful. One of the better one's I've had (Ann Sather's being my favorite!). Bill, my co-worker got an omelette with lump crabmeat, avocado, bacon, and cheese (Swiss I think). It was very tasty and was loaded with crab.

I got the Cap'n Crunch French toast (as did the Bayer rep). It came with real whipped cream and berries. It was very good. No syrup needed as the cereal was sweet enough. I would have liked a more eggy/custardy insides though. But I would get it again... after I had a chance to try other things on the menu. After our meeting (which lasted about 2 hours, and they never made us feel rushed) we walked back over to the car and saw we were near the Broadway market... stalls with fruits, meat and some really fresh looking fish on ice...

We went to a lunch meeting at another nice little gem called Regi's (Federal Hill) where I think I experienced the best wait service I have ever had... attentive, pleasant and in no way obtrusive. I watched all the wait staff at other tables and was really impressed. Really nice atmosphere and again they never made us feel like they needed the table. We were still STUFFED from breakfast, but we were told their cream of crab soup was not to be missed. Very good with quite a bit of lump crab on top. After we wondered through another indoor market Cross Street Market. Cross Street is one of the 2 remaining markets built in the 1800's. Food stalls, flowers, fresh produce, butcher, fish market, oyster bar candy... we people watched and looked at the food like one would after a big Thanksgiving meal... looks nice, but please take it away :)

Tonight was my last night in Baltimore. I told Bill that I really wanted to have steamed Maryland crab... and even though we had eaten crabcakes for dinner last night, had crab in an omelette this morning, crab in our soup at lunch... we stayed with the theme and went to Mr. Bill's Terrace Inn for steamed crab for dinner. We asked our Pfizer/Wyeth pharma rep at lunch where she would go for good crab (as she is a local girl). She said you don't go for posh surroundings, it's not on the water... the decor is very basic. We just got crabs and some steamed peel and eat shrimp. An Old Bay types of spice and salt mix dregding the crabs after their steaming. Very messing and a great deal of work. A couple beers and a few crabs... just enough to enjoy the experience. I learned in Maryland (perhaps other places) when you go in and ask what crabs they have they say it like this "tonight we have 48, 52, and 58's and they are heavy." Which means how much they cost per dozen and that they are heavy with crabmeat (which varies depends on the seaon. And the owner was a riot.

Bill made fun of me because I took pictures of everything on this trip... but it was nice to have a bit of exposure to local scenery and cuisine for a change... Typically it's fly in and fly out... and eating at the same restaurants I can find any city we're in. Good trip. Even found the girls their ornaments for this year in a tiny shop in Federal Hill.


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