All the restaurant news that's fit to print

Sometimes when I get back from vacation, I open my Microsoft Outlook Inbox, take a look, and feel like closing it back up, the way a surgeon must feel when he opens up a patient and finds the cancer has grown so large it's inoperable.

Many of these new e-mails have gripping subject lines like CALIFORNIA TORTILLA ADDS GOLDEN TWIST TO POP TART DAY. (I'm not even going to mention the exciting investment opportunities that for some reason Outlook doesn't think are spam.)

There is always the e-mail from the person who will be visiting Baltimore soon and wants to me to recommend a great, casual seafood restaurant in the Inner Harbor with a view of the water. Actually I got three of those requests this time.

I want someone to recommend a great, casual seafood restaurant in the Inner Harbor with a view of the water for me. ...

But among the other e-mails, I always get some useful restaurant news, as well as some good suggestions for posts -- many more than I can actually get around to. (I'm still kicking myself for not following up on the Obama burger tip I was sent. I ended up having to link to, of all things, our editorial page blog in my late-to-the-party post.)

For instance, I got this tip from Andy of Harbor East. I hadn't realized Woodberry Kitchen was serving brunch now:

Just wanted to let you know that we went to Woodberry Kitchen for Mother's Day brunch and it was wonderful.  Our waitress told us that it was the first day they've been open for brunch but will now be open every Sunday from 10:00 - 2:30 and they will soon have outdoor seating.  I've always been one who has loved the ambiance at Woodberry and thought the menu was very clever; however, to me, the food has always been "just fine" (i.e., a good meal but not a great one).  For full disclosure, I've been 5 or 6 times for dinner so I think that's a fair sample size to form an opinion. 
As for their brunch, the food and service were great.  A creative and fun (and reasonably priced) menu.  Great baked goods (we had a fun basket of sweets to start -- sticky bun, warm, jelly doughnuts, rhubarb scone, toast and monkey bread).  Good eggs dishes and a creative drink menu.

You know how I love mini-reviews.

Then I got an e-mail telling me the Red Springs Cafe, specializing in southern cooking, is opening on May 19. But take a look at the Web site and see if you can guess anything about what it will be like. It's two blocks from the Sun, so it could be a potential lunch spot. 

The duffster wrote to say that he was running through Patterson Park and noticed that Three... didn't have its tables out the way it usually did. When he got closer he saw a sign on the door that read something like "they could not renew their liquor license b/c of the bad economy, so they wouldn't be serving drinks tonight."

I called Three... and spoke to an owner, Michael Harmel, who told me that the license should be renewed by tomorrow.

And wait. There's more: the Wine Market in Locust Point is featuring a Rumba on the Patio event on Tuesday, May 26 from 6:30 p.m. till 9 p.m. with Mojitos, Light & Stormys and beer and wine, grilled Caribbean salmon, burgers and more. Tickets are $25 and include all food and drinks.

When I read this I went looking for Midnight Sun Sam to ask him what a Light & Stormy is, but he only knew about Dark & Stormys. I could always call the Wine Market, but I prefer just to use my imagination. I presume it involves rum.

Anyway, you get the idea. I can't just Define All and hit the delete button the way I'm tempted to. So if I haven't gotten around to replying to your e-mail yet, it's only that after three days I still haven't gotten through my Inbox.

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