Gestalt & Pepper: Restaurants for the Young at Heart

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Remember Bunny, Charlotte’s first mother-in-law, on “Sex and the City”? Okay, now picture her more likable, with a wicked sense of humor and you would have my mother-in-law, Mary Charlotte Parr. She is a single gal, somewhere in her sixth decade, living on a horse farm in Glyndon. Based on those facts, you might assume that she doesn’t get out much. You would be wrong. Very wrong. Mary Charlotte’s social life is more active than anyone I know: parties, dinners, lectures, movies, parties and some more parties. Her schedule exhausts and inspires me in almost equal parts.

Want to know how the senior set from horse country rolls these days? Mary Charlotte answers with her usual wit and charm. No wonder she is always on the guest list!


Home cook assessment:  Do you consider Durkee onions and Campbell’s mushroom soup legitimate ingredients or cheating?

Legitimate! Growing up our cook Alberta used both. If it was good enough for Alberta its good enough for me.


Saturday night with your favorite friends: Where do you book? What do you order?  

Well let’s take tonight. I am going to Barrett’s at the Hunt Valley Mall for a pre-movie dinner. Table 22. All my friends go there.


Where would you take fun friends in from New York?

Oregon Grille or Tark’s.


How about for a celebratory dinner?

I do those privately.


Where is your go-to place with your family? 

Harryman House bar if we are in the mood to go casual. The Greenspring Valley Hunt Club or the Elkridge Club for a fancier affair.


Any drive-ins, diners and dives? 

I don’t know if it’s a dive but I loved the Roland Park Deli. The Field’s (of Pikesville) luncheon counter is also a favorite.


What new restaurant are you dying to try?

None on my list right now.


Where do you grocery shop and why?

Regularly? Santoni’s. Mars for staples. I also stop into Graul’s, Ruxton only!


Is there a food item that you regularly go out of your way to buy?

In the summer months I buy my produce at Misty Valley Farms.


What Baltimore restaurant has the best vibe?

Wherever I’m out I make my own with the people I invite.


Okay, we gotta do it. Best crab cake?

Linwoods, and on the topic of crab, their crab cobb is divine.


Anything on your wish list for the Baltimore food scene?

I can’t wait for Ted (Restaurateur Teddy Bauer) to reopen The Valley Inn.

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  1. This column is the most interesting thing I’m reading in Baltimore…outside my weekend issue of the Wall St. Journal. Thanks.

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