The people have spoken. The nominations are in for the best local bands, players, albums, venues, engineers and labels of the past year. The second round for all the marbles runs Feb. 21 through Mar. 6. This year you can cast your votes once each week (that’s up to three times if you check your calendar carefully).And the cherry atop the BOBM sundae is a fantastic live showcase of nominees on Mar. 24. This thing was a blast last year, so let’s do it again!
Drumroll, please! Best of Burque, the original Albuquerque reader’s poll, enters its latest incarnation on Valentine’s Day, 2018. Voting runs Feb. 14 through March 13, a four-week period during which, for the first time, you can cast your votes once each week. So if you want to express love for your Best of Burque faves on a weekly basis to give the objects of your affection an edge in the results, your wish has been granted!
Gay Pride Day is kind of like the Fourth of July: Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgendered (GLBT) people start the day by gathering along Central from Johnson Field to San Pedro to watch the parade. All the different GLBT groups and subcultures stand on the street to watch or march together arm-in-arm, smiling and hugging, genuinely glad to see one another. Old friends reconnect or are remembered, new friends are made, groups gather to hear and cheer in agreement with some political speech and everyone is so polite to each other ... for one day.
Curious about the Pride festivities, but clueless on how to join in? We'll point you in the right direction. This year's event, themed "Equal Rights: No More, No Less," is an opportunity to show your support and enjoy a variety of activities, including music, art, discourse and a parade. Come out to celebrate the diversity and equality of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender community. For more details, check out www.ABQPride.com, or call 873-8084.
Order a stiff one with some help from our queer club guide.
By Laura Marrich
Gay bars come and go with surprising frequency in Albuquerque. Hell, even veteran scenesters have a hard time keeping track of what's available from time to time. But if you've recently come into town or out of the closet, deciding where to spend your evening can be that much more confusing (and potentially disastrous). Don't want to end up an Alice in Leatherland? Tired of beating around the bush? Find the scene that's right for you with our lineup of clubs, pubs and booze-holes that help put the "queer" in Albuquerque.
We are the Stonewall girls
We wear our hair in curls
We wear no underwear
We show our pubic hair ...
We wear our dungarees
Above our nelly knees! —chanted by drag queens who were chorus line kicking the police back during the Stonewall Inn riots
Don Martin's Brotherhood Sound throws the best dancehall party in three states. So where is everybody?
By John Hult
May 6, 2005
It's 10:45 p.m. and the show is just getting started. Don Martin grabs the mic and shouts, "All right everybody, Brotherhood Soundsystem Reggae Dancehall 101 starts now!"
A few yelps fly stageward as Martin and crew throw their hands up to the first track's roots reggae beat. The music gets loud. Four or five Burt's Tiki Lounge patrons dance and wiggle their way through the maze of chairs, tables and bystanders to get closer to the floor, where some dedicated reggae fans are already busting loose.
Quench your terrible thirst this weekend at the H2O Water Festival and Symposium, the first edition of an annual event presented jointly by Santa Fe's Center for Contemporary Arts (CCA) and the Earth Works Institute. The event combines film, education and community arts into a three-day extravaganza designed to highlight issues related to everyone's favorite chemical compound.
Delmas Howe's Passion doesn't look a thing like Mel Gibson's. Howe's painting series, Stations, is loosely inspired by the Catholic Stations of the Cross, a series of 14 iconic images commemorating the final events in the life of Jesus Christ. Howe's artistic vision, though, is set in the '70s on the piers of New York City and depicts a very different kind of passion.
Chamber Music Albuquerque kicks off its 64th annual June Music Festival with the internationally acclaimed St. Petersburg String Quartet. This Friday, June 10, the quartet will perform works by Glazunov, Bright Sheng and Tchiakovsky. On Sunday, the program will feature Shostakovich, Mendelssohn and Dvorak. The festival continues with two performances by the St. Lawrence String Quartet and the Kalichstein-Laredo-Robinson Trio. A lecture on composers and works will be offered one hour before each concert. The festival runs through June 26. $18 to $36 for Friday evening performances and $19 to $38 for Sunday matinees. Various discounts available. Call 268-1990 or log onto www.cma-abq.com for details.
The 19th Annual Festival Flamenco, presented by Albuquerque's National Institute of Flamenco, features stellar dancers and musicians from across Spain, Mexico and the United States, including Yjastros, Andrés Marín, Úrsula López, La Familia Farruco, La Familia Amaya and La Familia Fernandez. The closing performance on Saturday, June 18, will map flamenco styles, from the interpretations of gypsies in Granada to the new, urban modes of Sevillanos. The Flamenco Expo, a two-day professional and semi-professional competition, will include dancers, guitarists, singers and percussionists from around the country. The festival begins Friday, June 10, and runs through June 18. For more information, call 277-1865 or log on to www.nationalinstituteofflamenco.org.
Gag. Last week marked the first presidential press conference in more than a month. It was the day after Memorial Day and it was also Bush's first press conference since news of "the Downing Street memo" broke on May 5 in the London Observer.
An interview with former Sandoval County Clerk Victoria Dunlap
By Tim McGivern
On Feb 20, 2004, Sandoval County Clerk Victoria Dunlap became a local legend of sorts, kind of like Billy the Kid and Pat Garrett rolled into one. She was the public official who was acting, in some people's minds, like an outlaw, going against conventional attitudes in an effort to—here's where it gets tricky— uphold the law. On that day, Dunlap issued marriage licenses, 64 in all, to gay and lesbian couples, because, she said, there was no law forbidding her from doing so. The move added fuel to an election year firestorm that was brewing in Washington, D.C., and three days later, President George W. Bush announced: "A county in New Mexico has also issued marriage licenses to applicants of the same gender. And unless action is taken, we can expect more arbitrary court decisions, more litigation, more defiance of the law by local officials, all of which adds to uncertainty."
Both the City Council and Mayor Martin Chavez learned bitter lessons last week. Which lesson turns out to be the more painful of the two won't be known for sure until the October elections are completed.
Dateline: Germany—A 27-year-old man was mugged three times in one night--two of those while waiting for police to arrive. Reiner Hamer, from Oberhausen, lost his wallet containing $200 and his cell phone when three men attacked him in the bathroom of a local nightclub. Hamer called police from outside the club using a friend's mobile phone. While he waited for officers to arrive, he was approached by three other men who stole his watch and cigarettes. As he leaned back against a wall to recover, another five men came up to him and threatened him, eventually making off with his jacket and the last of his spare change.
Stink Soiree—To celebrate the nationwide DVD release of legendary local zombie film The Stink of Flesh (hitting store shelves June 7), there will be a special release party at Hastings Books & Music (6001 Lomas NE) on Friday, June 10, from 7-9 p.m. Writer/director Scott Phillips will be on hand along with a chunk of the cast, including Kurly Tlapoyawa, Billy Garberina, Kristín Hansen and our very own Alibi film editor Devin O'Leary. (Yup, that's me digging through a pile o' zombie poop for the sake of art.) Gore fans and other curious individuals can pick up Tempe Video's special edition disc of Stink (complete with cast commentary, “making of” documentary, opening night footage, bloopers, short film and more) and get it autographed by the disturbed people responsible for its creation. Word on the street is that some of the living dead might even put in an appearance.
When somebody comes into Burning Paradise Video looking for a “dark” comedy, I usually direct them to Happiness, an ass-kicking little film by cult fan favorite Todd Solondz (Welcome to the Dollhouse). Of course, I have to preface my suggestion by making it perfectly clear that by dark comedy I mean extremely dark, sick, twisted, disturbing and funny as all hell. The film plays like a perversely deranged version of Magnolia, in that there are numerous stories and characters which intersect throughout the film. At the center of this disturbing joyride are three New Jersey sisters: Joy (Jane Adams), Helen (Lara Flynn Boyle) and Trish (Cynthia Stevenson).
Dreamy dream film dreams a dream about dreamy dreamers and the dreams they dream of
By Devin D. O'Leary
I've gotta give filmmaker Robert Rodriguez (El Mariachi, From Dusk Till Dawn, Once Upon a Time in Mexico) credit for a lot of things. The man deserves props for his creativity, relying on imagination rather than budget to solve problems. He deserves a round of applause for continually rejecting Hollywood, preferring instead to shoot low-budget movies in his garage (literally). Now, he deserves kudos for being one of the most schizophrenic filmmakers in the world. Who else could release the exhilaratingly violent Sin City and the cloyingly juvenile The Adventures of Shark Boy and Lava Girl in 3-D within a three-month span?
TNT--the network that has worked, seemingly single-handedly, to keep alive the name of Louis L'Amour--is still putting all of its basic cable muscle behind the Great American Western. This summer, the net has joined forces with Steven Spielberg and DreamWorks to create the 6-week maxi-series “Into the West.” This sprawling multigenerational Western seeks to chronicle nothing less than the entire history of the American West.
It's crazy the number of sushi places that have opened recently out here in the desert, so far from the sea. Crazy Fish is Albuquerque's newest addition to the pool (pun intended). After many long weeks of anticipation, made even longer by false starts and rumors of the restaurant's opening, it finally opened eight weeks ago.
Sushi is not just about fish; it's all about the rice that's under or around the fish or vegetables. These vegetarian rolls are full of strong flavors and tasty rice. They always earn lots of raves every time I serve them. They also travel well for picnics and camping and are not that difficult to make. Give them a try.
Seminars for Screenwriters—Saturday, June 4, marks the launch of the New Mexico Screenwriter's Series. Founders Gene Grant and Marc Calderwood hope to bring monthly seminars and extensive quarterly workshops to New Mexico's growing cabal of would-be screenwriters. How to find an agent, how to negotiate a deal and how to sell a spec script over the Internet are just a few of the topics that will be discussed in the coming months. Grant and Calderwood have recruited an impressive roster of professional film talent to run these regular educational seminars. WGA member Deborah L. Smith will helm the very first monthly program, covering the fundamentals of feature scripting. The seminar is scheduled to take place from 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at Rio Grande Studios (6608 Gulton NE). Cost for the monthly seminar is a mere $10. Future guests will include noted Los Angeles screenwriting teacher Jim Mercurio and celebrated Chicago screenwriter Dan Decker. For more information, log on to www.nmscreenwriters.com.
Computerized cartoon is an OK pick for kids, but it's no Pixar.
By Devin D. O'Leary
There are moments in DreamWorks' new computer animated cartoon Madagascar that bring up the uncomfortable funk of DreamWorks' failed “adult” TV series Father of the Pride (performing lions, cushy zoos, celebrity voice casting). Fortunately for DreamWorks (and all of us, for that matter), those moments soon fade into the background as the film settles into familiar “kids' movie lined with pop cultural references for the adults” territory.
Icy cool gangster saga shows that Brits can be bad boys too.
By Devin D. O'Leary
As Americans, we love our criminal figures--from Billy the Kid to Bonnie & Clyde to 50 Cent. But we've got nothing on the Brits. The English worship their gangsters with a chic that borders on high fashion. From the gritty gangster films of the '70s (Get Carter, The Long Good Friday) to today's trendy, Tarantino-inspired films of Guy Ritchie (Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, Snatch), Brits have made the gun-toting, suit-wearing mobster a national icon, right alongside the London Bobby and the soccer hooligan.
Stick a fork in this couch potato, the 2004-2005 TV season is officially over. Now we can all sit back, relax and absorb plenty of summer reruns and crappy reality show placeholders until the Fall 2005 season arrives sometime in September.
This Friday, June 3, at Trevor Lucero Studio (500 Second Street SW), Jennifer Burkley unveils her "Tylenol Room," an ambitious art installation constructed from more than half a million pills. Trippy! Burkley says the work is a meditation on loss and survival. Check it out at the reception from 5 to 8 p.m. 244-0730.
Inspirados at the National Hispanic Cultural Center
By Steven Robert Allen
Questions about the inspiration behind art are as old as art itself. It isn't hard to imagine some furry, thick-browed critic dressed in animal skins standing at the elbow of a cave painter in France 20,000 years ago pestering the artist with stupid questions: Why did you paint a horse there instead of a bird? Why does that bison look like it's staring at me?
The Road Trip Plays: Out/In America is a series of six connected mini-plays by local playwright Lou Clark. This campy comedy follows Drew and her best friend, Bill, on a wild crosscountry adventure during which our heroine questions and finally embraces her sexuality. Directed by Jessica Barkl, The Road Trip Plays runs Fridays and Saturdays at 8 p.m. and Sundays at 6 p.m. through June 26 at the Vortex Theatre. $10 general, $8 students/seniors/everyone on Sundays. Call 247-8600 to reserve tickets.
A group exhibit curated by Nina Dubois opens this Friday, June 3, at the Donkey Gallery (1415 Fourth Street SW) with a reception from 6 to 9 p.m. Fine grub and rocking music from 6 Foot Fender will juice up an evening of excellent art from the likes of Kiki Athanassiadis, Che Chen, Christine Chin, Rick Clarahan, Dierdre Harris, Will Lichty, Danielle Rae Miller, Doug Morris, Tricia O'Keefe, Luke Painter, Matthew Rana, Valerie Roybal, Peter Voshefski, Fritz Welch and Alexa Wheeler. Flat Out Spectacular: Work from the Flat Files runs through June 26. Call 242-7504 for more information.
There isn't a single place on the planet where water isn't important, but here in the desert it's our lifeblood. Wetlands in our region of the country are cauldrons of fertility. In his new book, photographer and naturalist Lucian Niemeyer documents areas as diverse as Mexico's Cuatro Cienegas Basin, Arizona's San Pedro River, Utah's Escalante River, Texas' Big Bend National Park and New Mexico's own Bosque del Apache. In the process, Desert Wetlands celebrates the value and necessity of moisture in our dry-as-dust pocket of the world. Niemeyer will make an appearance on Thursday, June 23, at 7 p.m. at Page One Books (11018 Montgomery NE, 294-2026) to sign and discuss this fascinating book.
"With a little luck in the next three to four months we'll have three motels taken down."
By Tim McGivern
When the Gaslite Motel was open for business in East Downtown, it symbolized the kind of urban decay that makes Albuquerque feel like a town that hates itself. The place was, for decades, a well-known home for the destitute and depraved, a magnet for drug dealing, violent crime and likely spot to see a shoving match between a pimp and a whore in broad daylight.
City employees shine light on waste and incompetence
By Jim Scarantino
Good news, Albuquerque! Municipal employees now have an Internet forum where they tell the public about waste, incompetence, mismanagement and corruption in city government. It's not controlled by Mayor Martin Chavez. It's not something he should really want floating around on the Internet, either. It's written by regular city employees speaking up about what they see happening around them. You can find their website at www.abqgovernmentwaste.com.
If you haven't seen it yet, you really need to watch TheMotorcycle Diaries, the brilliant movie (Spanish with English subtitles) about an eight-month motorcycle trip across South America in 1952 by two youthful Argentinean medical students, Ernesto Guevara de la Serna and Alberto Granado.
Dateline: Australia—A group of drug-sniffing police dogs in Victoria will have to be retrained after it was revealed that the animals were drilled using a packet of talcum power. “I'm sure our dogs have got very soft, nice-smelling noses at the moment,” Victorian Police Assistant Commissioner Paul Evans told ABC Online. “But they are, in fact, trained in detecting talcum powder, so that means that they will have to be retrained in detecting cocaine.” An investigation is underway to see how the cocaine sample, used for police sniffer dog training, was substituted with talcum power. The Ethical Standards Division of the Australian Federal Police, who supplied the “cocaine,” is trying to determine if the sample was stolen or if an administrative error resulted in the switch.
A safe ride home is RAD! This past weekend the city debuted its Rapid After Dark (RAD) service, which connects entertainmaint districts along Central from Unser to Wyoming until 3 a.m. The expanded service costs just $1 to ride, and each bus is staffed with a neighborly security guard to keep your drunk ass safe. Assistant to the mayor A.J. Carian says that the city is hoping to promote local artists through "a rotating CD" that will be played on the Rapid After Dark line. If you or your band would like to be included in the project, call 768-3047, or e-mail email@example.com for more information.
Colleen Duffy created Devil Doll one late, smoky evening many blue moons ago with the mission of putting sex back into rock and roll. Deciding that the world of music had not heard the truth since Joan Jett and Johnny Cash, and hadn't blushed since Mae West, she grabbed her bass, a microphone and hit "record."
After Jack White made Loretta Lynn hip last year, it would appear that MCA is cashing in. However, this collection of 24 duets is an amazing display of vocal compatibility, though accompanied by more or less mediocre country instrumentation. What really stands out here is a variety of persona adoptions. As Conway professes love, cheats or leaves, Loretta coos, playfully teases or reacts with utter pain. Classic country fans, take note.
What's in a name? When I asked our waitress, “Who or what is Geezamboni?” she told me (tongue firmly planted in cheek), “It's the name of the owner's cousin's wife's dog.” Then she laughed and said she'd been given permission to say whatever she wanted when people asked about the name. But don't let it confuse you. My friends were hesitant about joining me for dinner because they thought the place must be Italian. Italian it is not, original it is.
Gazpacho is the perfect summer soup. It comes from Spain, where there are many variations in the preparation of the dish. There's even a “white” gazpacho made with almonds and white grapes, but I'll stick to the traditional version. This recipe is from a Spanish friend who lives in beautiful Seville, where this delicious chilled soup is thickened with bread. I eat a lot of gazpacho when my own crop of juicy, scrumptious tomatoes starts to ripen. It's important to use high quality tomatoes. The secret of a great gazpacho is making it a day ahead of time so all the flavors have a chance to marry. The soup tastes quite bland when first assembled, but after it rests for a day, you can adjust the flavor by adding more salt, pepper, mashed canned tomatoes or juice. Serve it icy-cold in chilled bowls and garnish with freshly made croutons. If you'd like to sample this version of the dish, I'll be doing a cooking demo/tasting at Bookworks on Rio Grande, Saturday, June 11, at 2 p.m. So come on down and try a sip.
What's going to happen as we start running out of cheap gas to guzzle?
By James Howard Kunstler
A few weeks ago, the price of oil ratcheted above $55 a barrel, which is about $20 a barrel more than a year ago. The next day, the oil story was buried on page six of the New York Times business section. Apparently, the price of oil is not considered significant news, even when it goes up five bucks a barrel in the span of 10 days. That same day, the stock market shot up more than 100 points because, CNN said, government data showed no signs of inflation. Note to clueless nation: call planet Earth.
At the May 16 meeting, Councilor Martin Heinrich's bill, cosponsored by Councilor Miguel Gómez, calling for purchase of land for the Clinton P. Anderson Open Space passed unanimously. Councilor Eric Griego's bill, authorizing an update of the Barelas Sector Development Plan, also passed unanimously. But audience emotion focused on a proposed boost in the minimum wage.
Dateline: England—A district judge in Telford, Shropshire, recently acquitted Police Constable Mark Milton of speeding and dangerous driving after the officer told the court that he was merely “familiarizing” himself with a new patrol car. Milton, 38, was recorded by his patrol car's video camera going 159 mph on the M54 Hwy. in the early-morning hours of December 5, 2003. The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents was shocked that such a speed was not considered dangerous by the court. Kevin Clinton, head of road safety, told the BBC News, “Police are governed by health and safety laws just the same as any other employee. We don't believe 159 mph can ever be justified on public roads.” Nonetheless, District Judge Bruce Morgan sided with the constable, calling him the “crème de la crème” of police drivers. Speaking on the steps of the court, Insp. Keith Howes of the Police Federation said, “PC Milton was driving in accordance with his training, honing his skills while possible and testing the vehicle's capabilities so that if he was required on an urgent call he would be driving safely.”
Silent Score—On May 27 and 28, Santa Fe's Lensic Performing Arts Center will present a special event titled “Live Music, Silent Film.” On Friday, Buster Keaton's celebrated comedy Steamboat Bill Jr. will get live, toe-tapping accompaniment from Santa Fe's eclectic octet BING. On Saturday, it's the haunting horror drama The Man Who Laughs. Both screenings/concerts start at 8 p.m. Tickets are $8-15 at the Lensic box office (211 West San Francisco) or online at www.tickets.com.
A long time ago in a galaxy far, far away George Lucas actually made a good movie. It was called Star Wars. Later on, it was called A New Hope, but we're ignoring that for now. He followed it up with one highly regarded sequel (which he did not direct) and a trilogy-ending capper that had its moments, but mostly rehashed the good parts from the previous films. Years later, he returned to the storyline, giving the world a pair of prequels that were alternately juvenile and ungodly complicated. Now, Lucas has decided it's time to put this baby to bed. This summer—as if you didn't know—Lucas is unleashing the final Star Wars film. So excuse me while I cut to the chase: Longstanding fans of Lucas' star-spanning empire can breathe one big, collective sigh of relief. This is the first film to actually compare favorably with Lucas' original vision.
Unusual Korean romance is guilty of breaking and entering
By Devin D. O'Leary
Sometime after the turn of this current century, South Korea very quietly took over as the cutting edge film center of Asia. Whereas Tokyo and Hong Kong were once the cinematic trendsetters, Korea is now the major exporter with a string of inventive, artistic and action-packed worldwide hits. Take Care of My Cat; My Sassy Girl; Volcano High; Musa the Warrior; Oldboy; Chihwaseon: Painted Fire; Taegukgi: Brotherhood of War; 2009: Lost Memories; A Tale of Two Sisters; No Blood No Tears; Sky Blue; Untold Scandal; Spring, Summer, Fall, Winter ... and Spring: The list continues to grow.
Last week was TV's infamous “Up Front” week. That is the moment when networks announce their big fall lineups in hopes of attracting lots of shiny new advertisers. So what do we have to look forward to (or not) this fall?
Anyone hoping for an in-depth page-turner of Texas country legend Billy Joe Shaver be warned: you're not going to find it here. Considering the life Shaver has led, the accomplishments he's achieved through raw perseverance, deep-seated faith and good ol' West Texas gumption, Honky Tonk Hero's 191 pages seems a paltry sum. Only 72 of those pages, however, contain any narrative, while the rest are dedicated to reprints of all Shaver's song lyrics.
Waco-born, Corsicana-raised Billy Joe Shaver is the quintessential unsung hero of American music; a sorely overlooked contributor to its formidable canon. Even though artists from Waylon Jennings and David Allen Coe to Willie Nelson and the Allman Brothers have enjoyed success on the coattails of the songs he began writing some four decades ago, Shaver remains on the periphery. In 1993, his luck began to change with the release of his first solo foray in several years, Tramp On Your Street (Zoo). The release two years later of Unshaven: Shaver Live at Smith's Olde Bar (Zoo) very nearly catapulted him to the forefront of country music, Texas-style. But, arguably, it was the stunning guitar work of his only son Eddy that made the elder Shaver remarkable to the ears of listeners, despite the fact that his gritty songwriting over the past 50 years or so makes him eligible for any Hall of Fame in existence.
Monday, May 30; The Launchpad (21 and older): Combining equal parts French chanson, German electro-pop and good old American trash rock, Stereo Total is the most beguiling musical duo to rocket out of Europe in the last decade. Frontwoman Françoise Cactus bangs away on her drum set, singing everything from Serge Gainsbourg ballads to old school cheese balls like "Push It Real Good" with the brazen enthusiasm (and at times, fragility) of an eight-year old girl. Brezel Güring also does double-duty as a keyboardist and crooner, exhaling German-swathed lyrics as languidly as smoke pulled from a Gaulois cigarette. You might find yourself lighting up, too. Now touring in support of their seventh album, Do the Bambi, the Euro-trash wonder twins are taking American audiences to dizzying new heights of pop mulitilingualism. And, thanks to the support of Downtown's Mecca Records, we'll be one of the lucky ones to hear them live. Oh, how the accents will fly!
Here's a band who loves straight-ahead rock tunes as much as their effects pedals. Spaced out music and melodies float around the standard rock progression to create a pleasant and easily digestable sound. Think Cave-In doing a bunch of Wilco covers. The last track was recorded live at the Crocodile in Seattle, and it shows Spanish for 100's music translates a lot better live than in the studio. "Metric" is a decent attempt, but they could benefit enormously from a bigger studio budget and a better producer.
I love Suzanne Sbarge's art. Her work is weird but somehow also familiar. I think I've dreamed some of her paintings at one time or another. She's got a new solo exhibit currently showing at Papergami, the Japanese paper store and gallery in Nob Hill located where the old Tulane Street Deli used to be (114 Tulane SE). It will definitely be worth a peek. The show, titled Earth to Honey, runs through June 30. 255-2228.
At the time of Albuquerque's birth in 1706, Spain was one of the most powerful empires on Earth. Its tentacles seemed to stretch around the entire globe, but its greatest influence was felt in the New World.
Finding your way into the Monte Carlo Steak House can be tricky since there is no obvious entrance. The place started out as a package liquor store with a drive-through window and a small bar in the back. The liquor store is still thriving, but the canopy is all that remains of the drive-up liquor window. There are two unmarked doors on the side of the beige building—the southernmost door will get you the entrance of the bar and steakhouse.
During chicken- and steak-grilling season, cold salads can be hot stuff, particularly potato salad. If you're at all like me, you judge potato salad against your own beloved mother's recipe. For many of us, mom's is the only version of potato salad we enjoy. My mom's name was Mary Magdalene, and here's her version of America's favorite summer starch. Use red “new” potatoes since they absorb flavor and retain texture better than Russet. After cooking, dress the potatoes with olive oil, cider vinegar and salt and pepper while they're still warm, and chill (the salad, that is). Be sure not to put the mayonnaise or eggs in until the mixture is cool. Mom used sweet Spanish red onions but you could use Vidalia or scallions. A pinch of sugar is optional, depending on the acidity of the vinegar. The most important points are not to use cheap mayonnaise and to always be very careful serving salads with mayonnaise dressings when you are outdoors. Place the salad bowl in a basin of ice to keep it safe in the heat.