Woodberry Kitchen Auctions Items, Shark on the Harbor Sells, and The Local Oyster Delays – Baltimore Sun

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I wrote last month about the weirdness that has been Wood paneled kitchen since the pandemic. The restaurant has been virtually in hibernation since last fall, hosting mostly private events. This week, there seemed to be signs of life. Well, at least a past life.

Alex Cooper is hosting an online auction of Woodberry Kitchen items including commercial kitchen pieces, banquets, chairs, tables, serving trays, whiskey barrels and a custom iron meat smoker.

Everything seems to be the end, but maybe it’s the beginning. On Monday, we reached out to owner Spike Gjerde, who said in an email that Woodberry still plans to reopen after a renovation. “Furniture, tableware, artifacts and equipment from the auction have been consigned to make way for our new look and operating model.” He did not specify.

Auction items are displayed in a gallery in Cockeysville.

“The idea is to capitalize on the Woodberry Kitchen nostalgia,” said Lisa Jones of Alex Cooper. “People who were fans of the cooking and dining experience would want a piece of it in their own homes.”

Closing of the auction on March 29 at 7 p.m.

I recently met the Ocean City restaurateur Jody Wright.

For those who don’t know, Shark in the harbor, the restaurant Wright founded with her late husband, chef Travis Wright, has been one of OC’s top dining destinations for nearly two decades, known for its commitment to local produce and seafood. His fabulous view doesn’t hurt either.

Travis died in 2019 and Jody found herself running the restaurant solo. It would be a monumental undertaking under any circumstances, but then COVID-19 hit.

Jody says she almost welcomed the stress and chaos the pandemic brought, as she was so busy going through various crises that she didn’t even have time to think about her grief. But as the world returned to something resembling normal, she began to envision life after the restaurant.

Last week, Jody announced on Facebook that she was selling the Shark to three longtime employees: the bartender Victoria Sperrychief executive James Samataro, and Krystle Meehanwho takes care of sales and reservations.

After running the restaurant with her husband and then going solo, Jody says she was keen to hand the business over to three people. She told them, “Three is a magic number because it allows you all to have great lives…no one will be swallowed whole” with the demands of restaurant management.

At 52, Jody says running a restaurant is “a young man’s, young woman’s game”.

As for her next chapter, Jody intends to pursue a lifelong dream of being a full-time writer and novelist. She is working on a book about her life in the restaurant industry called “Seconds: My codependent restaurant life”.

In it, she plans to reflect on her husband’s years of struggle with bipolar disorder and death by suicide. She wants to break taboos around mental health topics, which she says just creates more barriers for people to get the treatment they need. Why shouldn’t it be as easy to talk about treatment as cancer?

She will discuss how his passion for the restaurant put a strain on him and gave him a productive way to deal with his mental illness.

“We never had kids probably because we were so engrossed in the restaurant,” she said. While running a restaurant came with pressures, “The need for this restaurant saved him. It needed him and it kept him on track.

The pandemic is getting us used to waiting. Last week, I reported on the delays business owners have seen getting the necessary permits from city agencies. Other commercial operators in Baltimore say they are seeing backlogs from manufacturers as they try to get new restaurants furnished and ready to open.

“Anything metal or structural steel – custom parts have been delayed,” said Patrick Hudson, who is opening a new branch of The local oyster at the Anthem House in South Baltimore this summer. Some ovens, steamers and walk-in coolers took up to nine months to ship. The project, in preparation for about 3 years, should open its doors in June. “It’s been a long journey.”

The company’s planned restaurant at Remington is delayed indefinitely, Hudson says, both due to supply chain issues and an overall increase in construction, as well as staff. “We couldn’t staff this place if we wanted to.”

I received several responses to my question about readers’ favorite places to eat “Baltimore pizza”.

Harry Bosk proclaims Hersh’s to be “among the best in Bmore”, with Hampden’s Birroteca. He adds: Cheezy Pizza on Joppa Road and or Remo’s of NY in Carney.

Matthew it’s the classic, but my favorite is Barfly’swrites Stanley Feldman. “Make sure you dip it in the special sauce. Don’t sleep on the Fra Diavolo.”

“I love a lot of things about my adopted hometown, but pizza isn’t one of them,” writes Philadelphia native Mitchell W. Feldstein. “For some reason, pizza isn’t one of Baltimore’s charms. And don’t even get me started on the falafel!

Baltimore Sun reporter Lorraine Mirabella contributed to this report.

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