Panthers at Ravens, Sunday Sept. 28, 1:00 p.m., M&T Bank Stadium, Fox
Former Panther great Steve Smith, who pulled in the key catch from Joe Flacco in the thrilling win against Cleveland, doesn’t lack in the self-confidence department. “When I line up, I think there’s no better option than myself,” he said after the Browns game. In Week 1 against the Bengals, Smith already had this game against Carolina circled on his calendar. “Hey, if you [expletive] think I can’t play, you’re gonna find out in Week 4, [another expletive]!” he yelled into a TV camera on the sideline after catching a touchdown pass. Well then. Can’t wait to see what he has in store for his former team (and the cameras) on Sunday.
What to Eat: North Carolina is barbecue country, and down south, barbecue equals hog. There are various ways to smoke pig parts at home without a smoker (the easiest being to use a charcoal grill), but truth be told, replicating the process without the right equipment is a hassle, and the results are usually underwhelming. Luckily, Baltimore is undergoing a barbecue renaissance of sorts, and as I wrote about recently, there are several great spots around town to pick up a tender rack of ribs or pulled pork sandwich.
You know about heavyweights like Andy Nelson’s in Cockeysville (11007 York Rd.) and Big Bad Wolf (5713 Harford Rd.), but there are a few other options I didn’t get to discuss in that story that fit Sunday’s bill as well. In Federal Hill, HarborQue (1125 S. Charles St.) offers up “Carolina ‘Que with a Baltimore view.” Its pulled pork sandwich is marinated in an eastern North Carolina sauce of apple cider vinegar, brown sugar and peppers.
The Pig & Rooster Smokehouse in Canton (3242 Foster Ave.) is a newcomer to the scene. It opened this summer, and with some big TVs behind the bar and drink specials it usually posts on its Facebook page, it’s a solid spot to go watch the game. Its small menu includes the intriguing Italian smoked pork sandwich, topped with prosciutto, spinach, roasted red peppers, pesto aioli, and mozzarella.
What to Drink: From the tiny town of Madison, NC, comes Catdaddy Moonshine, an un-aged 80-proof spirit made from corn. It’s available for $23.99 at Total Wine in Towson, and you can use it to make a number of cocktails, including a Smoke Mountain Rickey (recipe from The New Old Bar by Steve McDonagh):
- 2 ounces Catdaddy Moonshine
- 1/2 ounce cranberry juice
- 1/2 ounce fresh lime juice
- club soda Pour Catdaddy, cranberry juice, and lime juice into a tall Collins glass filled with ice. Top with about 4 ounces of soda and serve garnished with a lime wedge.
If you’re heading out for the game, Myth and Moonshine in Canton (2300 Boston St.) has a full menu of flavored and unflavored moonshines, as well as numerous cocktails that use the beverage. Most appropriate for this week’s opponent is the Black and Blue (the Panthers colors), made using blackberry, blueberry, and cherry moonshines and Sprite. The bar has several Ravens game specials, including $10 pulled pork sliders and $2 Natty Boh cans.