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March 2, 2010

Owl Meat's Tipsy Tuesdays: Post-bar nosh

max's empanadasWe don't cover food that much on Midnight Sun (it's usually Dining@Large territory), but today, I'd like to make an exception.

Too often, I've ended up gorging myself on greasy Maria D's pizza post-bar. Or, I'll come home and make a bag of Pop Secret Homestyle and stuff my face until I look like a chipmunk.

Owl Meat, it seems, prefers hot bread pockets filled with rich, steamy meats. Now you got me all excited. Here's Owl Meat:

Your hollow leg is overflowing and it's time to skedaddle homeward. But now your belly has gone all Tasmanian devil, flailing about for grub. What to do?

Post-drinking food decisions are the worst. Anything will do.

Owl Meat Rule #82: The later a place is open, the worse the food is. I won't drop any names, but you know what I mean. This seems particularly true for Chinese food and pizza.

I live in Little Italy, which has a dearth of places to get food quickly and none that are open late. That changed a few weeks ago when Max's Empanadas opened on High Street near Sabatino's. (Reviewed here by Richard Gorelick.)  ...

They have all sorts of tasty Argentine pastries, salads, and panini. There's coffee and Wi-Fi. They have beer and wine, but the reason this place has captured my attention and wallet is that it is open until 1:30 a.m. on Friday and Saturday nights.

After having my fill of bourbon or beer on a weekend night, I can now feed my hungry belly beast. In this frigid season, the beast wants hot empanadas. Mmm... I pick up a couple and head home to scarf them down in my SpongeBob pajamas. There is something almost supernatural about how these meat grenades hold heat.

Going to a diner or ordering takeout or delivery is fine, but sometimes you just want to go home. Max's is convenient for me, but not that many other people. I suppose it would be a good quick stop on your way home or on your way to any of the harborhoods. I'm just in love with the idea of something nearby that's quick, delicious, and not Italian.

Enough about me. Where are your favorite late night nosheries? The kind of places where you don't regret the morning after. Okay, throw in the ones that you do regret too. The flesh is weak and when John Barleycorn is driving the bus, you may feast at the greasiest of spoons more than once.

My friend Kilo says, "Always end with a song". So here's, "Whiskey, You're the Devil" by the Clancy Brothers and Tommy Makem. Sláinte! And ¡Olé!

(Baltimore Sun photo by Algerina Perna)

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Posted by Sam Sessa at 10:19 AM | | Comments (14)
Categories: Owl Meat's Tipsy Tuesdays


Aha! I'm not the only one with Spongebob pajamas.
If I'm headed home after a night out in B-more, I'll stop at the Double-T Diner in Catonsville. Usually for breakfast food. Hey, it's already morning, so why not?

Papermoon is still the creme de la creme, even if they do actually close now.

If you don't make it you can always run up to 41st street SuperFresh and fill a cart with random items.

I like the place that was there b4. Speaking of that-we wandered in around 1am one night and there was a drunk that refused to believe it wasn't the old spot. "where's all the Italian stuff-what's an empanada?"

I guess my favorite late night spot is Never on Sunday's- I really loved it pre-fire when you could stand in line amongst cackling drag queens way til 4am.

I despise the Paper Moon- I can't see why people like that place- it's even creepy taking a leak in there.

I'm such a party pooper. You would never catch me out at 1 a.m. unless it was some type of emergency. Early to bed and early to rise. But back in the day when I could hang, I like me some 7-11 nachos with chili and cheese.

btw that looks like an extracted tumor

For me, it's all about breakfast...the Broadway Diner, the Blue Moon Diner, and if I'm outside the city or in the mood for a drive, maybe the Honey Bee Diner in Glen Burnie or the Happy Day Diner out on Pulaski Highway or Valentino's on Harford Road.

Back when it was open 24 hours, my after-bars joint was predominantly the Papermoon Diner. (And by the way, I have it on good authority that they are returning soon to 24-hour business again, 5 days a week.)

I grew up in Rochester, NY, where late-night eats is a way of life. A slew of imitators of the Rochester-famous Nick Tahou's garbage plate are open all night and feeding hungry fratboys and sorority girls who forgot about the diet that is making them miserable. I have to say that Bmore has gotten me off of late night eats almost completely due to the miserable options that it offers:

1.) Never on Sunday - stale burger buns, pre-packaged burgers from Sam's Club...but yes, some of the cross-dressers are entertaining
2.) Hilltop Carryout - poor excuses for chicken parms, gyros, cheesesteaks
3.) Maria D's - no offense, but the Greeks can't make pizza for a damn, yet they still sell 500+ slices a night to people who just finished the douchebar trifecta (cred to City That Breeds for so-naming Mothers, Mad River, Magerks)

The one possible exception is J&P (JP's) on Light St. just south of fort. They actually have a decent chicken parm, but I haven't had much else (I'm guessing their pizza is as bad as the rest of bmore's, Matthews and Paolino's excluded)

I miss these bad boys:

OH SNAP...I almost forgot to mention Nam Kang. If I'm not in need of breakfast or grease, I'll head there for the bulgogi and the army of little side dishes it comes with. (Doesn't hurt that I live two and a half blocks away.)

" douchebar trifecta "

I damn near wet myself reading that!!

I went to college in a small Western Pennsylvania town deep in the land of the Sheetz gas stations and convenience stores. Sheetz's biggest cash cow was their made-to-order fast food that you customized through a touch screen computer. My standard after-drinking meal was a breakfast sandwich of sausage, egg, cheese, mayo, butter, salt, and pepper on a croissant. Two of them and a bottle of chocolate milk was usually enough to preemptively fend off a hangover.

(I ran the numbers on the Sheetz website; each of those sandwiches was about 700-800 calories.)

The trick to getting late night food in a college town is to leave the bar at exactly the right time. Leave too soon and you like a square, but wait till closing time and you get stuck in line with the dozens of drunks waiting for the security guard to let them inside "Club Sheetz".

Had a lot of good memories in that Sheetz... I'll never forget the guy who came in flailing his arms in agony and nearly crying blood after some girl accidentally sprayed mace through an entire party. Good times...

One time we ordered a Maria' D's pizza when we were sober. The cheese sat in my stomach like a brick. Drunk food, much like drunk hookups, is often a bad idea in retrospect.

Sheetz!!! I went to college in Central PA (We Are!) with some of the Sheetz family but I loved the subs from Sheetz at 2am. I once had a buddy steal a meatball sub and burned his nards.

Wawa does the same type of setup for sandwiches as Sheetz, but Wawa's bread is awesome. I had a stale hunk of junk excuse-for-a-sub-roll the one time i had a Sheetz MTO outside of Shamokin Dam, PA.

MAx's is awesome.The guys are really nice and the food is muy delicioso. If you are in LIttle Italy and want dessert, consider their beautiful homemade desserts rather than the overrated factory-made stale stuff at Vaccaros.

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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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