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I hope you all had a nice Thanksgiving. I hosted my mom, brother and nephew at my apartment for Thanksgiving. I loved cooking for them! We do a very traditional feast, just a little smaller. I hope I can host again next year. Funny how having guests over makes you get yourself organized, no?

I ordered Parker House rolls and a pumpkin pie from Chris Audia and Theresa Louis (husband/wife chefs) at Two Crabs Bakery. My mom commented a few times about how much she liked the rolls. Me, too, Mom. And I got a surprise delivery from my friend Chef Tae Strain: a Bartlett pear and yuzu pie baked by his partner Beth, who is an incredible pastry chef. Thank you, Tae -- you are a wonderful friend. I sent everyone home with all kinds of leftovers, which made me really happy. 
This weekend, I had a fun night out with my friend Kerry. And the funny thing is, the three places we went had one thing in common: oysters. I know oysters are one of those foods you usually love or hate. TEAM LOVE. We started at a friend's backyard oyster roast, then went to True Chesapeake for drinks and snacks. And since we had started the evening so early, it felt odd to go home...so we decided to go to Dylan's for one last drink, potato skins and raw oysters. Sometimes it just feels so good to be out with people and you don't want it to end. It was a pretty perfect night. A little bit cold out -- which I love. Winter is almost here. Fall is my favorite but I love how winter makes you slow down a bit.
the food edition
                                                                                                               Illustration by Debora Cheyenne
Helen Rosner is one of my favorite writers out there. We've followed each other for many years now. She is currently at The New Yorker and I highly recommend her Food-Themed Holiday Gift Guide
Also, if you would like to shop locally for your friends and family who love to cook, check out the pantry at Le Comptoir du Vin. Rosemary and Will have created such a fun (and useful) shop. Check their IG for hours for details, online ordering, shop hours and more (highly recommend following them and do not miss updates in their IG stories). I personally have become a fan of their fennel pollen...adding a tiny bit to meats, veggies and more to enhance the flavor of what you're cooking. It's pretty magical. (And, I don't say "magical" a whole lot.)

OH, and the restaurant is open again in case you missed that news. No reservations, they're open for sandwiches at lunch and a small menu at dinner time just on Friday and Saturday. There is now a patio out back. Go and check it out. I am hoping to go soon. 

Last weekend, I met up with my friend Eddie for dinner. We went to JBGB's and I think I found my new favorite thing to do. After we finished dinner (the bar was not crowded and I felt okay there), we wanted to end with a beer and we decided to take them outside to enjoy by the fire pit. I cannot wait to do that again. ps. Get the pizza. And I hope you've already had their crazy good cheeseburger. Holy moly.

still one of the best brunches in the city
You know The Ambassador Dining Room does Sunday brunch, right? It's $28pp and is a buffet with lots of good choices. Did you also know that they have bloody mary and mimosa bar that is self-serve? Well, there you go. It's definitely not a "cool", Instagram-y brunch spot but that's kinda why I like it. When I worked at the BMA, my friends and I would go for the lunch buffet every so often on payday Fridays. Such nice memories!

Yes, the Ambassador was recently sold by the Singh family, but it's hard to spot a difference in the food or service. If you haven't been yet, I highly recommend the Singh's restaurants in Baltimore County and Howard County, Peerce's and Ananda. Both are completely lovely. And the bonus is you get to see those warm and welcoming (and stylish), brothers Keir and Binda Singh. They are such pros.

Still here, still cute.

I never got rid of Magnolia's bed, I just couldn't. It's been sitting in my entryway for months. A few nights ago, this is where I found Emmy.
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Thank you!

xo - 


Amy Langrehr
Charm City Cook
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