Telling the G&A Restaurant family story from Highlandtown to White Marsh with Andy Farantos. And, yes, french fries and gravy were on the menu!
people, hotdogs, crab cake, nice, eat, highland, place, baltimore, business, dad, restaurant, food, epstein, gravy, thought, left, big, hamburgers, hot dog, taco
Nestor Aparicio 00:00
With America w n s t Towson Baltimore and Baltimore positive you’re positively in Whitemarsh no longer in Highland town we’re Jean a restaurant. It’s all cursory our friends at the barrel a lotta got some holiday cash. Drop it scratch offs as well as Raven scratch offs. Well, I had a winner here a little while two hours not the big box, but it’s all good. Also our friends are window nation. 866 90 nation you buy two you get two free and 60 months 0% financing. It’s a better deal and they even gave me back in August. So go take advantage of that. The Maryland crab cake tour first stop of this year is here with you and Andy’s here for GNA. Could you still call it coding? I always call Jen a Coney Island is what I have to call
Andy Farantos 00:42
Yeah, yeah, we didn’t we didn’t change the name. We didn’t do anything. We just moved the location brought everything over with us all our own equipment, the know the equipment, the pots and pans that all got the flavor in them and everything so
Nestor Aparicio 00:53
well. I tell you what, I had French fries and gravy proper. I had a sliders here. But I was a guy that got very addicted to the hotdogs in Ireland. So I rarely got anything that was I would stop and be like, because I drive by and I’d be like am I in the mood for hot or hot? Those are small. And I liked you and it was a nice visit your sponsor. I’m like, up just around the corner there was a Clinton which is street right around the corner. Industry evening. So I parked my car right there. And then I come around and get a hot dog. And that’s enough for me. And a lot of times you try to give me a second one or you try to get me. I’ve turned down more food. You’re Greek so I try and turn down your food. You don’t I mean? Like that’s really what it is. So I had to turn down the food. They’re laughing but it’s true. How often do you try to feed we like to we like to make sure everybody eats good while I was looking at sort of coconut cream prior I said give me the whole story here with love from Baltimore. I’m not going to take the camera and go guy fee back in your kitchen and all that but tell me about the space the lease how you got a deal here. Why you’re because I don’t know any of this. All I know is you hit me one day you said I’m closing up I’m gonna find a new place. The internet went crazy. Then you found a new place and I hit you 100 times when he opened when he opened you said soon soon soon, soon soon. You open and then I say can I come out? You’re too busy. It’s crazy. It’s very, it was really it was it was really a sensational ism. It was an amazing thing.
Andy Farantos 02:16
I tell you it’s not just me. It’s the it’s the the atmosphere, the crew that I have the story that we have the history that we have with Baltimore City, and it was really tough to leave. It wasn’t it wasn’t easy and every day even though I’ve really enjoyed her a love it, but it’s not Baltimore City.
Nestor Aparicio 02:32
When did you open here? What
Andy Farantos 02:33
day was reopened March nine
Nestor Aparicio 02:35
miles? We say April. So it’s March 9? Yeah. And when did you close Highland town?
Andy Farantos 02:41
We closed Holland town probably about a month or two before? Okay, so it was it was it was it was a little tricky because we were we’re building this place out and working there at the same time. And it got a little tricky. Why
Nestor Aparicio 02:51
here give me give me the whole genesis because I want to know about the sign. I mean, you never really thought about leaving high 10 So you did and then when you do you’re like all right, could I move my business? Where would it you know I we’ve all been through all of this out an am radio station. Yeah. You know,
Andy Farantos 03:06
so it’s been it’s been it was it was tricky. I mean to leave was was it was definitely heartbreaking was hard. It was really hard to leave and get up and just you built it wasn’t even it was your life. Yeah, it wasn’t even customers was family and friends coming in there. And we had, I had a 34 year old relationship with them in place. We’ve been nursing since
Nestor Aparicio 03:23
1927 1927 years, and I really wasn’t wrong.
Andy Farantos 03:28
I was close. 94 years. Yeah, yep. I wish we would have 94 Exactly. And I wish we would have been able to hold out for another six years. But it’s just it’s got a little tricky down there. You know, it’s real tricky. Yes.
Nestor Aparicio 03:38
And I lived in the city and I saw my there’s no it is what it is. I mean, you were looking for a better life. There’s no one should ever apologize for whatever they feel like could be best for them. And I would ask you right now you’ve been here a year your sales up or down, up. Okay, well, you run a business, right? And if you couldn’t do that, then I I’m here to celebrate all that this, quite frankly. Yeah. And I know it’s hard.
Andy Farantos 04:04
It’s really hard. You know, and I, when I first started building out everything I was scared, you know, does that mean? It’s always new, you know, COVID was here who’s gonna concern me? Is this the right spot?
Nestor Aparicio 04:16
I thought I was the only guy I loved and I called you and I said, I’m gonna be there for you, but you knew you knew people would know. And I didn’t even know where it was the first time I came here. I saw it online. So Whitemarsh I really didn’t know you were next to tacos. Like I didn’t Google Map it right and I just know he’s moving the white bars were in white, but I thought you were gonna be over and honey go we’re we’re Nick was just your Fisher wise. I thought that was the space that you were. There
Andy Farantos 04:43
were there were a couple things that were there was at one shopping center. The rebuilding over on Philadelphia Road. A lot of people thought were going there which, like, bet a mile away from the old golden remote. And then what Sam’s Club in Home Depot for anybody that can show like that for sure, man.
Nestor Aparicio 04:56
I saw a lot of movies that go over. Yeah, no,
Andy Farantos 04:59
me too. Oh, cuz I was I was freaked out when I was when I was younger. My mom would take me there. As we’d be leaving, we’d see the Rocky Horror Picture Show people coming in.
Nestor Aparicio 05:06
Oh, yeah, you know, the rest for Yeah, they’re gonna throw spaghetti and rice at each other’s norm now, but
Andy Farantos 05:11
that back then it was you know,
Nestor Aparicio 05:12
it was kind of crazy. He was camping out for concert tickets at the head. That’s more common. Yeah.
Andy Farantos 05:17
Yeah, so yeah. But besides that, we, we found the location why here? Why
Nestor Aparicio 05:22
Andy Farantos 05:23
I was driving by and you know, drove by a couple of times, and then during COVID We were shut down and I drove by and I told Alex, you know what, we should look at the spot and I called DS Brown, which owns the development here. And I gotta say, they’re really really good people. Well, this
Nestor Aparicio 05:35
is a corner spot, right? You have a kids playground here, right? Like what did you find your I guess you found that a year and a half ago or like that, right?
Andy Farantos 05:46
Actually, probably longer than that. I live right around the corner. I’m gonna live like, live here. Okay, so okay, and it just you know, I mean, every day will pass by this was the old time for love and drive by a couple of times one night I can actually came by here to pick up carry out and they were closed. And I was there going oh my god, man that my foods your customer taco. Yeah. Hey, don’t guys. Sorry. I was, you know, but they had already moved over there. I had no idea when I pull my car around. I was like, I thought they just closed and left and left my food. And I turned around and sure enough, they moved over on that spot. This was empty and called them up and made the arrangements and it all everything just worked out. Great. Everything worked out really like your kitchen. Love it. Love it. I get to I got to set that up just the way I wanted to do it. You know what’s convenient for me. A lot of people that need five or six people in the kitchen like that. I’ve got three, three solid and solid people. I got a great crew. My whole crew. I got a really really
Nestor Aparicio 06:35
good well, you built this thing. And I came here for breakfast. You were open a couple of weeks. I think it was last April in May. And it was nuts in here, right? You’re texting me? Where’s the food? Okay, and I’m like, Dude, you’re you’re slammed. There’s people waiting everywhere for eggs and bacon attend in the morning. Yeah, I mean, we’re friends, but you don’t need to refrain that they just need to give me eggs. Like it’s all good. But this young lady just came in here and gave you a hug on the backside you I thought about this earlier because I saw you back making me hamburgers. And I told her I want to slaughter she’s like, he’s gonna make you three. And I’m like, I only want to but she made me three and a gate one to cancer bonus for me got a lottery ticket to that to our shows. We appreciate him. And I looked at you and I thought I’m not gonna wait to make monkey show. Because I’m thinking to myself, how do you get anything done? You know, every customer? Yeah. Everybody in here wants to see you. And I’m like, Oh man, dude. Oh, I got I got cheddar cheese with this. How do you like it really is amazing. It’s everybody was doing it for years. It’s a family business.
Andy Farantos 07:38
Yeah, this is a great family businesses spans three generations. My grandfather, my dad and myself. You know, we love it. The day the day we opened up and running was supposed to open up that day. It was Wednesday. We were prepped up to up not that Friday. He
Nestor Aparicio 07:51
ran out of food. Did you? Yeah, I remember seeing I don’t even know
Andy Farantos 07:53
why she told Alex I told my wife Alex, I said and Alex. I said mom just open up and see what happens. And a guy came in at like 930 10 o’clock in the morning. First I told him like, you know, Alex, let’s take a picture real quick. I sent it to my daughter who’s a social media person person and she she put it on Facebook and Instagram and maybe about a half hour 40 minutes later it was on it just it just never looked back. You know, I had to call people I mean, I had, I had like 10 people back there and I felt even more fine. I was
Nestor Aparicio 08:21
so happy for you because everybody in my world and I’m Dundalk, but Highland town you know, all that knew about it wanted to come out wanted to celebrate and wanted to get a hot dog. I wanted to get some eggs or whatever. But the thing I noticed that day that I was here and this is where I’ll get into you being an operator. And I’ll never forget the day that Bobby Flay opened his store over in Towson and it was like a celebrity thing my wife was still bald trying to get better. I think the first day she actually had enough energy to like go out for an hour and we took her out we went out there and I remember him being there and it was like little like this it weren’t a lot of people there yet it was you saw it with doors were locked celebrities it was VIP and he was checking literally every salt shaker every ketchups like all every every nap and everything he and he was such an operator will be looking around at every little thing trash on the floor, you know, just little things. And I think to myself like you’ve been doing this in Highland town all these years. Yeah. Your business change dramatically when you move through different business. Yeah, yeah. I mean, you were a hot dog. We’ll start truck you park here you come in you sit down you hang your place wasn’t always it was it was grabbing go.
Andy Farantos 09:35
Yeah, it was it was it was it was a real quick. It was real quick hitting you over here. It’s the same thing. The you know, getting back to what you said about Bobby Flay. I gotta say, you know, he’s, he’s a good operator. And the reason he is is because he cares about his customers. He cares about his food, he cares about everything and that’s what we do here. You know, we do everything. It’s a small place, but we do everything fresh and homemade. Everything. The French fries are fresh cut the gravies homemade just like to see our butcher is the same butcher we’ve had Since 1954, old line meats which used to be Ruppersberger, customers produce is the guy that delivers all our produce or potatoes or vegetables and all that. We don’t we don’t outsource to any of the big boys because we don’t use any of their stuff. The only thing that we have here that’s that that is not sourced that is not made here are homemade is the onion rings and the mozzarella sticks on because we don’t have time to do it. And we don’t have the space to do onion rings, because they’re a little tricky. But besides that everything comes in made from scratch. And we know I’m not going to say we’re farm to table we’re about as close as you can get all our purveyors are right here in Baltimore, and we don’t look outside of Baltimore for it
Nestor Aparicio 10:32
to get to live there we work man. Yes, it’s a great lifestyle. It is rather it is
Andy Farantos 10:36
it is I just became Grandpop twice over again over code. My whole family, my whole everything that I do is within a five mile radius, I go to the gas station once every eight weeks. Well, I
Nestor Aparicio 10:48
mean, basically thing is, you know, my my dude, Nick came over from wise markets and like, you know, him and I brought him over because he’s from around the corner. But this was you’ve lived out here how many years? I’ve been here at
Andy Farantos 10:58
first. We’ve been at that now. 17 Altogether, probably about 2029 years.
Nestor Aparicio 11:03
Oh, my God. So three decades here. You want to move in? Yeah. Well, I mean, that’s if people ask me, why did he move visited the way? Because he lives out there? I know, the end he can move his business. It’s wonderful.
Andy Farantos 11:15
Yeah, it is. But like I said, it was it was hard. It was it was it was hard for me to get up and leave just because my all my roots are downtown. Sure. Greytown you know, just, that’s what it is. And it was just that part picking up and leaving. But what I did notice was a lot of my customers that are coming in once or twice a month, are not coming in once or twice a week. And you know, for whatever reasons. We all know, it’s it’s just been received in this state of affairs. We Baltimoreans right now, it’s just tough. And people stopped coming down. And I thought maybe I was doing something wrong, or, you know, whatever. But just, you know, especially older customers, they just didn’t want to come down there. They want to park and it got tricky. It got tricky. So when we moved up here, you know, we didn’t sure we weren’t sure how we’re going to get received.
Nestor Aparicio 12:00
Parking. Yeah. Let’s start with you didn’t ever had a place to park and
Andy Farantos 12:04
I’ll tell you the best thing is, you know, like I said, I love Baltimore, but it’s just one of the surroundings. You know, the big window that we have we had the big window there. And now we got the big window here. And you know, instead of a bus stop and you know, you see and yeah, we’re watching everything. Got the daycare center over here and they’re walking the kids every 15 minutes and little kids will just walk by about 1015 Star dogs. They love hot dogs. They love hot dogs. Yeah.
Nestor Aparicio 12:29
Andy’s here from GNA we are out here gene a Coney Island I would say gene A restaurant of Highland town always Ohio. We’re at we got the new with love from Baltimore Sun and by the way, I got it to Alice. I’m ordering the crab cake now. I gotta order crab cake. So I’ll tell her we’re gonna have one here. Yep, you gotta do you eat your own crab cakes.
Andy Farantos 12:47
I don’t I don’t eat crabs. No, I don’t I need a grilled cheese in the soup at the end of the day. I don’t they told me to eat much yeah, I don’t own a tiny baby eating weighs me down so if I eat now
Nestor Aparicio 13:00
food all day you don’t even try your own food.
Andy Farantos 13:02
Oh, I try it. Yeah, of course. Of course you try it.
Nestor Aparicio 13:06
You look alright man, you look like you’re doing tastings but you do look happier. And so the with love from Baltimore, this sign here give me a little inspiration behind it. Because I had a sign very similar. It’s purple. It said nasty radio. And it was made for my studio art modell gifted it to me the day I opened the radio station on August 3 1998 to be 25 years old. Now beautify and cook. So I had one almost that size in the studio. And the gas got broken. And then I made a new one. It’s a wn S T. wn S T logo. But mine was a script just like that. Yeah. So give me the background on that.
Andy Farantos 13:43
So my daughter, my son in law bought that for me as a gift for the restaurant here. And they figured you know, let’s put this up here. So everybody knows the did Baltimore City, your hearts in Baltimore City and you love Baltimore City because we do all of us do. You know, my whole crews from Baltimore?
Nestor Aparicio 13:57
To Alvarez right? Bear hotdogs are Yep. Rafi Rafi all back on the ship. He did a thing with a dear friend of mine that one of my family members from Dundalk. They did a reading a Christmas reading up at the Enoch Pratt library right around the corner from
Andy Farantos 14:11
where you were we did the we did the hotdogs for them. Yeah, we took them like 50 Hotdogs for that reading actually Maria Maria dropped it off.
Nestor Aparicio 14:18
That’s beautiful right? I mean Eros is good guy. Oh my God really super super good. It’s
Andy Farantos 14:22
real boy he’s balling right oh my god. He’s definition about
Nestor Aparicio 14:26
Well, I was telling us sort of thing and I’ve never really had you want to show in this format like it’s one of the great parts about the crabcake tour brought to you of course by our friends at Maryland lottery. I want to give the lottery some love. I have a holiday. You’re the right age holiday cash Ross one for Andy got one for him. Also have a couple of ravens scratch offs as well. handful. These left. We’re gonna have more Maryland crabcake tour stops coming up in the weeks ahead. We’re gonna be drunk City on March 3. And I only know that because I set it up and we’re gonna have Calvin stadium who I company to hippodrome to see my fair lady that I took my my middle school A piano teacher high school, middle school music teacher. He produced My Fair Lady in 1982 when I was in the show, wow. And when my fair lady came to the Hippodrome, I’m like I gotta take him out because I spent the whole night with him last night. He’s 82 years old sharp is attack cracked me up. What he’s a 60 year educator of Baltimore County, right like literally right? So I I’m gonna have him out do the show. So we’re gonna have some great guests. But Phil, you my background with you? Is that in the 23 bus left from from Colgate his point? He’s point mall, where they had penguins back in the day. Do you ever see the penguins at the mall?
Andy Farantos 15:38
Yes, you did. Yeah. And it’s so funny because Rafi actually, there’s there’s one of the articles or some of
Nestor Aparicio 15:44
them always come up on the crabcake tour show. I don’t know it always. Do you remember? I have a very vague, vague, vague, like I think they want to weigh 71 or 72 or 73. I was about three or four or five
Andy Farantos 15:56
there. I don’t think he’s Rafi brought it to my attention. I was like, Man, I remember that. And then then then it got very clear
Nestor Aparicio 16:01
that people have sent me Polaroids of it little pictures and different things. So you know, it’s a history thing for me. My parents considered Highland town the place they shopped. Yeah, so weather was whenever I needed as a kid. We went to shock it’s with the Epstein’s or with the jaegers we I even when I was a kid my communion I remember getting my little suit you know at the little suit store right next to revere as pizza on your block. I
Andy Farantos 16:30
think that was great. Well, that raise was a little raised was two stories now under the storytelling.
Nestor Aparicio 16:34
Remember between Epstein’s and shock? It’s it was right right by reveres
Andy Farantos 16:38
was yeah, it was right. I think it was right next to the old Sonny surplus, correct, right? Yep. Yeah,
Nestor Aparicio 16:42
they sold Nice. Were for people, right? So my parents we take the 23 Boston island town on Saturday mornings. Alone as pizza. I did music lessons on the second floor jaegers crossed some houses like all of that pizza. Rivera’s the tunnel out of Epstein’s yeah into the other side that went where they sold all the curtains and apartments.
Andy Farantos 17:05
Nestor Aparicio 17:10
Yeah, so my Highland town stability, my childhood, all of that. But your family’s place was the place for my dad and I that was around baseball and football but not on Sundays as much but baseball than what we would get to Hamilton. We have to change buses. We had to get off the 23 and then go behind Epstein’s to get the 22 on Bank Street. Right. So, during that period, we get off the 23. A Goldenberg right. All right. And my dad would say hey, we’re not going to pay ballpark prices for the hotdogs. We’re going to write up here to G and a nice Greek folk. So your I guess your father or grandfather now my father your father? Yeah. Okay, so this would be 1975 6789 was my dad your dad? So your dad’s name’s Jimmy
Andy Farantos 18:00
Jimmy Jimmy Jimmy Jimmy little Jimmy and big those big Jimmy little Jimmy, my uncle my dad.
Nestor Aparicio 18:04
Okay. Well, your Jimmy would have the hamburgers and the onions under the light and the hotdogs on the rolls there and we would go in and now we get one or two and my dad was there $25 at the ballpark or 25 cents here. Fill your belly up or something like that. My dad started during the Great Depression. He would always he puts on your belly puts those my dad right. So we would always always, always, always, always go get a hotdog because my dad did not want me in the second inning should I got a Chilean sauerkraut all free? So my dad made me cheat a customer. There we go. So that’s where it’s so so talking to you about this place and about your My dad would be proud. 50 years later, you’re still we’re do business. We’re friends. I eat your hotdogs. You know what I mean? Yeah, so my dad brought me into your place. And 50 years later, here I am in Whitemarsh still in your place. And today, I came in and this is the story for me. You’re waving everybody how you cook any food. So same thing happened to me. I came in and the people at this table all for this fella here was from Colgate newsstand Gibson fellow here had been on my bus trips to Pittsburgh, and I start talking to them when I come in and then your staff its mission. One of your servers said I went on your hockey bus with my son he’s six foot six now right so like, I know like
Andy Farantos 19:34
body’s got strong history.
Nestor Aparicio 19:35
man Yeah, man. That’s really it. There’s a story there is for everything. And we’re it’s we’re all in it together. So you open this place March 9 of last year soft opening. One Hot Dog one picture. Your daughter’s got a big mouth. Next thing you know, you’re in business. You ran out of food, right? Those couple of weeks after you open I gotta think you didn’t have staff, right? You’re trying to figure everything’s already trying to figure out food orders. Yeah, people are just piling in here. You’ve never had in your life a restaurant like this right now outdoor seating, more more table service than maybe what you were used to give me that month for you because like, I talked to you call me late at night and you’re so but you love me apologetic. You’re telling me you love me and you’re apologizing for not calling me. I’d been in here like three weeks earlier. And you’re like, I took me three weeks call you back. And I’m like, Dude, I’ve seen this miracle business. You know, I mean, it welled me up with pride for you guys. I know when things are going well for my business, and when things haven’t gone well for my business and seeing that this was going to work for you than I do. All you do is calm it down. Get your people right, yeah. But
Andy Farantos 20:45
that’s all we had to do was just figure out a system and start rolling from there. And to be honest with you, it just it got real easy real fast for us. We got the you know what they say they say the harder you work, the luckier you get. And that’s that’s what happened here. You work hard and got lucky. And it just everything found. Everything fell into place where it should have been. It’s just it’s been a wonderful experience.
Nestor Aparicio 21:03
So this crabcakes she’s making what’s he going to give me your style? Because you cook all the foods? Yeah.
Andy Farantos 21:09
Yeah, you know what, it’s funny, because the people I’ve gotten the back, I’m trying to show him how to do it. But I’ve been doing ever since I was a little kid. So it’s not, you know, let’s grab the measuring cup. And let’s grab this. Let’s grab that. Yeah, it’s just like, you know, you start throwing stuff together, and then all of a sudden, they just turn around and like, and they’re gone. They’re doing something else. They’re cleaning or they’re doing something else. So that’s, that’s what I do with
Nestor Aparicio 21:28
your wife run. The place is always it’s always you want to go she’s taking an order right now, literally. So when you guys have a barbecue at home who cooks a lot? I’m just asking. Oh, no, nope.
Andy Farantos 21:41
I do. I do Thanksgiving. I love cooking. I
Nestor Aparicio 21:45
wasn’t gonna ask you. You’re talking about grabbing things. And I’m seeing the cook in the kitchen in mind. Yeah. When did you start cooking?
Andy Farantos 21:52
was done was a baby. I was I was I was Dad, what’s your work? Well, you know, I wanted to spend time with my dad because he was always working. So the best way I could spend time with my dad is go down there on weekends, you know, get in there on weekends and what I do Abran Ray rock
Nestor Aparicio 22:04
to help you needed the relationship. The money. Yeah, he needed the money. And
Andy Farantos 22:08
I ended up doing this peeling potatoes for like three years peeling potatoes and opening up all packages for like, two, three years. And then sweeping, mopping and then just working all the way up and I got to work with them. I mean, 56 years old. I’ve been in the kitchen probably ever since I was 1112 years old. And I’ve just I’ve worked some really, really wonderful people, you know, people that nobody will ever know, all the way up to, you know, guy, fatty. It’s been that except for me. It’s been it’s been really, really nice. I’ve just my dad’s my dad and my whole family’s in the restaurant business. So because of that, you know, it’s just always, you know, always here helping helping, they’re doing this doing that. And they were all diverse restaurants. You know, some were steak and lobster houses. Some were breakfast spots. Some were lunch spot. Some are delis. I got 55 first cousins were all in the Roma hospitality business.
Nestor Aparicio 22:52
Well, I wasn’t shocked that you had a crab cake. Right? Yeah. Well, one of the things about putting the crab cake tour together was I felt like I mean, this morning. I was at accelerant the man who owns Citron was at my table right beautiful restaurant around the corner. Yeah. And I knew they had a crab cake and I’m like, so I can come to the show at your place. Now you know what I mean? You have a crab cake. We’re gonna go I you know, even if your food truck we’ll figure out a charity. We’ll figure out some for dogs and cats. But I’ve had so many crab cakes over the last couple of years and it’s just been there’s some inspiration behind it. You’ve been greeted. I have a feeling that it’s going to be Greek inspired. Because Greek crab cakes are a little different. Yeah, East Baltimore very old bay forward when I found Eastern Shore very creamy. Crab forward not Old Bay ish, not Jao is not salty, yet more sweet and salty. And where’s your Are you fried or your broil?
Andy Farantos 23:46
Well, down at the old place we were fried only because we didn’t have the broiler. Now we got the broiler and I’ll tell you our crab cakes are there they’re phenomenal. They’re really good. We I use I use real really good crab meat. I get my crab meat from Mr. Fish. I gotta get I gotta get their props. You know, Mr. Fish, I get my crab meat from them. They’re super, super nice. People will always take the time to you know, find what I need. Because when I first started out, I really want quality, I’m all about quality. And they’re there. They’re pretty meticulous about their quality too. And they they’re very proud of their business. They’ve been around for a while. So we get our crabmeat from them and you know just started toying around with it’s like you said you know if you go here if you go there sometimes little all day, sometimes a little more on the salty side. Sometimes it was one on one and mustard size and
Nestor Aparicio 24:29
this is the biggest controversy I have. And this is a Greek argument, you know, is the pimento Yeah, or or pepper of some red pepper. Pepper. Not Not spicy pepper. Right, right. It’s almost sweet. It’s more like a pepper. But yes, sweet pepper, right. I have had when I talked to Nancy Devine and fade Lee’s pepper and you know, and so everybody’s got their their bias Yes. You know when it comes to like, do you like deep dish pizza or Chicago or Detroit or what Ever. There are so many different ways to make a crab there is and for me I prefer them fried only because I grew up that way. I grew up East Baltimore pure
Andy Farantos 25:12
original crab cake if you ask me, I mean yeah, you know,
Nestor Aparicio 25:14
so the jumbo lump and I love it Gooch. I love the blade. I love all of that. But there is a point where my mother made these little hockey pucks, you know what I mean? She did a special meet. And it was just it was simple. What’s the Shire, a regular French’s mustard? Some mayo? celery seed usually usually a little Chesapeake Bay seasoning of some kind to give it a little bit of that Yeah, but then Sheesh, hockey puck. I tell all these people that give me like Costas and they gave me the jumbo lump. I said, you know, I’m gonna go home and murder that crap. You know, I’m gonna take a crack at home. I’m gonna flatten it out of the frying pan. Put a little olive oil in there Friday. Plate it out. And we’re gonna have that crunch. The crunch.
Andy Farantos 25:58
Original crab cake. I think the world stuff came out when everybody started eating healthy, just like a chicken souvlaki. There was no such thing as a chicken soup. Like in Greece, it was always a forks of likey you know, put on the pita bread and tzatziki sauce, wrap it up and give it as a food truck item. Right. You know, but then people decide they’re gonna start getting healthier. And all of a sudden there’s no such thing as a pork souvlaki, because chicken sandwich came along to Chile. Exactly. Yeah. Yeah. So you know, cake came around. It’s nice. But
Nestor Aparicio 26:22
have you always had a crab cake a genie? Yes. Yeah.
Andy Farantos 26:25
We’ve always had a crab cake and we always had caddies. Well, that’s such an East Baltimore thing. Yeah. And nobody does counties anymore. I mean, I can’t do you find them anywhere?
Nestor Aparicio 26:34
There’s some things like comedies like fruitcake. There’s some things that like when my mother died. Yeah. And your dad’s you know, leaving at some point, that the things that the that the people ate in the 40s and 50s and 60s Yeah, it kind of like they never ate raw fish either. Yeah. No, there’s this whole what’s it like to host your father know what? tacos in Baltimore? 1975
Andy Farantos 26:57
Now the only time it was an America that’s what we call a hotdogs American taco.
Nestor Aparicio 27:00
It’s amazing Highland town where you like the I’m Hispanic? There were no Hispanic people anywhere in Baltimore. 1975 Yeah, and like to know where a taco now go to Highland and I can eat a taco day everyday. Next year. Sure. Of
Andy Farantos 27:12
course you can you get one walk a block. Get one all welcome. Yep. All different. All different. Yeah. There’s very, very, very done. I’m not gonna say territorial, but it is you know, you gotta know Salvador Guatemala. You got them all. You got every mix of people that you got around here, and it’s nice.
Nestor Aparicio 27:25
I’m Venezuelan. Gonna get me out at eight. But we have to have that.
Andy Farantos 27:31
Jackie back there. She’s proof from proof. Well, we’re
Nestor Aparicio 27:34
gonna make some Peruvian Chicken, Chicken Rica. And he’s here we’re a G and a we’re in beautiful White Marsh. I wasn’t sure if this was White Marsh Nottingham Perry Hall. It is kind of like I looked, I looked Google says it’s white mark. Yeah. So you come out here and you take the place over there. What are some things you’re doing differently and some things the same from holiday, because I know you have hoppers, but you don’t have the view and I can’t see them you know, the way that you could.
Andy Farantos 28:02
And there’s, there’s a big difference between you know, having placed in the city right by bus stop with, you know, the ways that basically half of your kitchen is right in that window there, you know, where you’re doing everything. And it was, to me, that was the best part of it. The best part of it was I mean, for 34 years that I actually owned it just sitting this window is like this big silver screen for me. It’s just like a 24 hour running movie. It was just never a dull moment down there. Good and bad. It was but it was great. You know, at the end of the day was just, you know, you go home and you reflect and it’s like the things that happen go to my mom’s house for supper every Sunday and we sit down the table and everybody would you know pretty much take the floor with my wife because they just want to know what happened with the GNA downtown because the craziest things happened and it was so much fun. And then here now we go for supper knowing like How was your week great and that’s about it Yeah, so you know but it was you know like I said it’s
Nestor Aparicio 28:53
healthy happy yet very happy boys doing well boys Dallas back you’re doing well yep.
Andy Farantos 28:59
And then another little shot you know my my one daughter should graphic design artist. She’s doing very well. Mother Daughter. She’s getting you up in a place you’re not crosskeys easy like Sunday. And there that’s gonna be really nice. What’s it gonna be? It’s it’s called easy like Sunday it’s gonna be a brunch spot it’s a brunch spot Yeah, yeah. So more food places for your family. Yeah, they were down in Charlotte they just actually my son My son was on the training the guy right now because he sold the restaurant in Charlotte we moved up here and they’re gonna open under crosskeys and they’re gonna I think they’re gonna do very well they’re gonna you know really good product and
Nestor Aparicio 29:28
they care well they put you out in front of it put your name up on that
Andy Farantos 29:31
you know when I offered it to him there during that that brunch you know the fancy just like you know I like give me a good meal nice cheeseburger, nice hamburger cheese, steak, barbecue beef brisket, whatever. crabcake nice and simple, you know, without the dressings,
Nestor Aparicio 29:46
crepes over there stuff like that. And then crepes yeah well Gucci you know that Yeah. But for for me coming into your place back in the 70s and being literally a customer for life, right. I mean, I’m thinking a highland town. And in that way as home, right? Oh, yeah, definitely. Definitely. Yeah. And so I understand what it’s like a comfort zone in there. Yeah. Well, it’s safe for me. I will come by and see you all the time. I try by now. I’m like, well, he’s not there anymore. But I’ll go out to White Marsh to see him. So take a break. I want to eat your crab cake. My shoes coming by. Okay, great. So maybe I’ll have one with him. Sure. Sure. Sure. You got it. You don’t eat your own food. You don’t eat crab cakes.
Andy Farantos 30:24
I you know what? I’m not a big crab cake. Yeah. I’m the guy that at the end of the day, I was just like I said, I’ll need a grilled cheese and a super cheeseburger.
Nestor Aparicio 30:32
I’m not keeping notes. This is the last thing I’m going to keep you with. Because I mentioned this to Nick, because you’ve mentioned it to me. You said you were peeling potatoes when you were a kid in the 70s. Right. Your family had something with gravy and french fries. Right? Like you’re one of the first places so yeah, definitely. Give me that story. Because I don’t know that story.
Andy Farantos 30:52
I just said, you know, to be honest with you. I can’t. I can’t give you the exact details. I just know that. You know, for me personally going through the motions. I mean, you think about it, you know? 1920 Something we opened up. They weren’t purveyors It wasn’t us food service continental there wasn’t processed food. You had a butcher you had a produce guy. You had a beer guy you know because we serve
Nestor Aparicio 31:11
27 hotdogs obviously right? Yeah, hot
Andy Farantos 31:13
dogs. Just good old fashioned diner feels it was it wasn’t a big menu was just you know hotdogs, hamburgers, cheeseburgers, and much different than 100 Yeah and then we get you know the hot beef the hot turkeys the breaded veal cutlets, you know, just the good old fashioned diner food you know, that’s the best way and then gravies a party. That’s that’s the bit that’s that’s huge then said you know, and it’s so nice because you know, people come in here all the time. And they’re just if you come in here and you get a french fry with gravy, chances are you’re not gonna go anywhere we got people come from all over for the gravy furs. The
Nestor Aparicio 31:43
thing about your old place I never went pervan The food because I never walked it back. Yeah, because I’m always with you in the front rows on the go. perv your your desserts? Because you would have your pies up or down or right like diner style. And I would look at things and sometimes I’d see what they got some eggs and bacon. Eggs bacon. Yeah. But like today I came in there was a line. I couldn’t get to see people with this table had sliders and I saw the mash. saw the potatoes come out with gravy, french fries. And that made me get it. I ordered with my eyes. Right, right. Right. I came across and I’ve been wanting man french fries and gravy for like a month. I’ve been craving it right. And I just haven’t been anywhere where I’ve ordered it. And I came in and I didn’t know what I was hungry. I left home early. I said boy, if I didn’t eat breakfast, I’m gonna go get some food with Andy and I and she’s What are you getting us and I don’t? I don’t I was thinking about the shrimp salad. But I know it’s gonna crab cake later. So I’m like I got the sliders. They were delicious. Good. I don’t think I’ve ever I haven’t had a hamburger since your dad made one from the 1980s.
Andy Farantos 32:44
Yeah, well, like I said, we have, you know, Ruppersberger. They used to be old. Their old unmutes now they’re, they used to be called routers, burgers. They’re great. They’re there. They’ve been in Baltimore. Since I think 1930 Something like that switched over my dad, my uncle switched over, back in the early 70s. And yet local beef, one cow gets it all but you know, so when you come here, in a lot of places you can order medium rare or rare because you know, you’re a little concerned about, you know, the ground beef. Here. It’s this ground beef comes in fresh every day, if not every day, the next day. And it’s not a frozen hockey puck, rather than just funny you mentioned, but it’s not a frozen hockey puck. You know, we just we just don’t, and a lot of people and I love people try
Nestor Aparicio 33:24
Hey, you really high compliment. When I say this, it had a little tavern quality to it.
Andy Farantos 33:29
Yeah, right. Yeah, I’ll take that. Okay. You know, back in the day, the little tavern needs to get their ground beef from George’s George’s National Beef, which is right around the corner from us. We used to get our we used to get all our stuff from their hotdogs. They were they were one of our big purveyors till they went out. And, but they were
Nestor Aparicio 33:43
they weren’t there. I looked at the dude sitting right here at three sliders. And I looked at him and that’s that looks a little a little tavern to me. And then I ordered them. And when I fit in, I’m like, it’s like a little tavern because you don’t man. You got your pickles going on. You got all my shoes. crabcake tour man, I got real celebrities out here. Go back into kitchen. Do what you do.
Andy Farantos 34:04
Thank you. Thanks a lot of you, guys.
Nestor Aparicio 34:08
sponsors. I’m glad it took me 10 months to get out here. Right. 10 months you open to march. Yeah, I knew it was gonna happen.
Andy Farantos 34:15
I appreciate it. I really do. Thank you. And I remember the last time you actually did come in probably one of the only times you ever sat down the butcher mother got her mother’s craft cakes. She got her case. And you said you make sure my mom’s very particular about her hotcakes. I think she was happy.
Nestor Aparicio 34:28
I made I made that reference to Nick in the previous segment. I took my mom down for hotcakes. I didn’t sit in your place much I was
Andy Farantos 34:37
in and out. She would screw up with your wife grab the hot dog. Let’s take a picture real quick. Amy and then boom, Ron.
Nestor Aparicio 34:45
Dogs perfect. Yeah, when it’s perfect because it’s small.
Andy Farantos 34:49
It’s easiest thing that you don’t go boom 123 bytes and boom, you’re gone. You’re done.
Nestor Aparicio 34:53
I’m such an eater man. I was up in New York in the beginning of summer, and I was insane. To Park north in Harlem, and I was alone, I was alone for three days in New York on a bender doing my thing, seeing concerts in Robert plane. And I did the Google search. And like top 10 places, Upper West Side and I’d never been in the Upper West Side, my wife and I went wandering and I found this little Indian carry out very reminiscent of GNN. Okay, as a storefront, right. She’s a very humble, small place. And that’s called roadie roll, free plug. You gotta get 109 street, you know, up into a you know, if you get there, God bless you. But everybody on Google was in his neighborhood, and it was raving about the place and it was six blocks where it was and I’m like, if everybody’s raving about it, and it’s unique and roadie Rosa, it was a Indian burrito, kind of like an Indian pocket. And I’m like, All right, everybody’s recommending this thing called Chicken malai. And I’m like, All right, I’m just gonna go order it. It was seven boxes the size of a hotdog, which is why I’m telling this. Because I’m in New York, I don’t want to fill out your rounds. I don’t want a burrito. I want a little Chiquita. I got this thing. And I sat there and I ate it. And as I’m eating it, I just wanted to like sing about how good it was. It was just it was like one of the greatest things. It was such a guy for Yeti. Right, right. Yeah, it was such a like, humble GNA place, and I ate it. And I got another like a little poly paneer with little spinach was fine. But the chicken thing was one of the best things I put to my lips last year, went back to New York two weeks ago. And we went back up and had Nils who saved my wife’s life. His wife, and my wife and we were dropped. We had our car in New York, which long story. Southwest Airlines shut down, we were happy to have our car. And we were we were at the park. And I said to her it’s one time and like he’s never gonna get on the subway and go through this with me. And it’s such a humble, stupid little $7 It’s, it’s an Indian taco. It’s a hotdog, but not a hotdog with chicken meat in it. But it was the best thing ever had we went up there and I walked in data guy 28 bucks walked out before put him back in the bag. And we all sat in the car. And everybody took a bite. We all looked at each other. And they’re like, this might be the greatest thing ever. So these humble little places Oh yeah, release was a place guy for Yeti dam to nobody would know about it unless Google. But I would think the place out here now. You still got graffiti on the wall and all that kind of stuff. This celebrity part of this and having a small you, you can have a small place that everybody can know about. Yeah, I mean, that really is the truth. And
Andy Farantos 37:39
to be honest, that’s I think the big secret to it all, honestly, is putting love into putting love into it and just having the right people don’t you know, there’s such a struggle to find people, you know, it doesn’t matter what field you’re in right now. I mean, it doesn’t matter if your truck trucking you know, restaurants or hospital, whatever, it doesn’t matter. It’s just everybody’s having a tough time doctors, lawyers, all that stuff. So I’ve been very, very fortunate to get the people that I do have and you know, because of that they care and then when somebody cares, it’s just it’s a whole different program.
Nestor Aparicio 38:07
Well you’re hiring people that have been on my road trip so I know you got good stuff. Andy for GNA I’m gonna get the Maryland crabcake tour go on it’s all brought to you by our friends at the Maryland lottery I’m gonna be giving Mike Chu a scratch off a holiday a cash crop scratch off as well. So Raven scratch also our friends at window nation 866 90 nation by two you get two free 60 months 0% financing. I didn’t even get that deal back in August when I got my windows, but I love my window nation windows, especially when it gets cold as been nice. It’s definitely saving us money on our heating bill this winter as well and we’re out on the road. I might my thanks to all of our guests. I’m gonna have Mike on Tony della Rose was scheduled today. We’re gonna get him down the road. I wanted to get another restaurant tear on here, man I was gonna bring bring him over here.
Andy Farantos 38:50
Yeah. Nice. So it’d be nice if he Bella got trapped. He’s up in Bel Air a
Nestor Aparicio 38:54
family issues. Yeah, we’re getting back down here. Thank you appreciate you. The credit case is being saved from Mike shoe on Nestor. We are wn sta and 5070. We are in Whitemarsh to a Baltimore positive stay with us.