The Stanford Grill opens tomorrow, and you apparently need to try the key lime pie -- flavored with the essence of blogger soul.
Kevin of Kevin & Ann Eat Everything wrote up last week's "press review" at the Stanford Grill and loved the key lime pie. He sold his soul for a huge table of food and photographed most of it. Talks up the corn bread, chicken thigh, spinach and more. Most importantly, Kevin reports the best parking lot cafe in Howard County because you can see Rte 175 from the outdoor patio.
Wordbones also wrote up the event on Tales of Two Cities. The Stanford Grill folks filled Wordbones' booth with local bloggers -- although not one blogger who had to be at work last Friday -- so you should check for future posts on Food and Wine Blog and Dining Dish. Wordbones loved the pineapple upside down cake. Apparently, the crowd was mostly bloggers, which makes sense because newspapers tend to have rules that limit taking free things.
As I have written before, HowChow is a hobby started to help me find cool food when I moved to Howard County. But wading into the blogging pool has made me think about how this type of writing will differ from the journalism that newspapers taught me 20 years ago. (New Rule One: You can work with a cat in your lap.) For politics, government and watchdog reporting, the change seems to be mostly a disaster because bloggers don't cover the boring stuff and certainly can't sustain confrontations with powerful folks. In local food and community writing, there is something new and valuable.
I covered South Florida in a newsroom of 20-year-olds who mostly wanted to get promoted out of South Florida overseen by editors who mostly never left the newsroom. In comparison, Wordbones sat at Stanford Grill in a booth of adults who write about where they live and who each connect into the community in a way that was unknown -- and maybe even forbidden by ethics rules -- at The Miami Herald. There are blogs that post regularly and try to operate above just the author's opinions or press releases. It's a mix of reporting and "passing along news," which is where I see HowChow. If you really want to know about Howard County, I think those blogs -- and the circle of readers and commentators who coalesce around good ones -- will give you something different and richer than what I used to bang out on deadline. It is also a space open to your voice -- a free Blogger account and you're ready.
If you want more about local blogs, start with the ones listed at the bottom of my right column. Most of those have their own "blog list" as well. Or check out Jessie X's post about Frank Hecker and then Hecker's own post about anonymous comments. Thank heavens food blogs avoid some of the crazies who comment on political blogs. But I still love the idea of people using a fake name instead of just "Anonymous." (I'd prefer you to use a pseudonym, but I can't spell that consistently.) Chowhound is the perfect example of a place where no one knows your real name, but regular readers can put extra weight on your comment if they have seen you before and appreciated something that you wrote.
8900 Stanford Boulevard
NEAR: The new restaurant overlooks Rte 175 just west of Snowden River
Parkway. To reach Stanford, you need to get onto Stanford either from
Dobbin near the current location for Frisco
Grill or from McGaw Road behind Apple Ford.