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January 31, 2009

El Rancho Grande: The story behind the name

el rancho grande baltimoreThere's a pretty interesting story behind the name of El Rancho Grande, the year-old coffee shop at 3608 Falls Road in Hampden.

Owner Peter Schmader's father, John, spent a lot of time in the Southwest in the 1930s, and took Peter there when Peter was a kid.

John had a record called El Rancho Grande. It was by a guy named Ramon Armengod, and came out in the late '30s. It was an album in the true sense of the word ...

Inside, El Rancho Grande was filled with little photos and descriptions of Mexican states -- a real photo album. When it came time for Schmader to name his cafe, he thought back to that album.

"I wanted to have some link to stuff in my past," Schmader said. "There were a whole lot of names in the hat and that name just kept coming back. When all was said and done -- when all the other names filtered down -- El Rancho Grande hung in."

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Posted by Sam Sessa at 9:57 AM | | Comments (1)
Categories: Bars & Clubs, Local music


Interesting story, I really love going there to listen to the live bands that play!

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About Erik Maza
Erik Maza is a features reporter at the Baltimore Sun. He writes for several sections of the Sun paper and contributes weekly columns on music and nightlife. He also writes and edits the Midnight Sun blog. He often covers entertainment, business, and the business of entertainment. Occasionally, he writes about Four Loko, The Block, the liquor board, and those who practice "simulated sex with a potted palm tree." Before The Sun, he was a reporter at the Miami New Times. He's also written for Miami magazine, the Orlando Sentinel, the Sarasota Herald Tribune and the Gainesville Sun. Got tips? Gripes? Pitches? He's reachable at Click here to keep up with the dumb music he's listening to.

Midnight Sun covers Baltimore music, live entertainment, and nightlife news. On the blog, you'll find, among other things, concert announcements, breaking news, bars closings and openings, up-to-date coverage of crime in nightlife, new music, round-the-clock coverage of Virgin Mobile FreeFest, handy guides on bars staying open past 2 a.m. on New Year's Eve and those that carry Natty Boh on draft. Recurring features include seven-day nightlife guides, Concert News, guest reviews of bars and concerts, Wednesday Corkboard, and photo galleries, as well as reader-submitted photos. Thanks for reading.

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