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Bill Oertel has worked for the family business for 35 years now. He grew up in it. And this year, he is its new, incoming President. That business is Harris Crab House & Seafood Restaurant, which is situated on the Kent Narrows Waterway just four miles east of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge.

Oertel's grandfather, Bill Harris, started the operation -- initially a seafood processing business -- 72 years ago. And for more than seven decades, Oertel said, "we've been in business on the Eastern Shore selling and buying seafood. Around 1980, he wanted a place where all of his grandkids could work. So, he started a little crab shack on the [front dock of the W.H. Harris Seafood Processing House] that had picnic tables and just sold crabs and shrimp. Pretty much all of his grandkids worked there and grew up there. Most of us haven't really left."

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A year ago at this time, the Maryland State Licensed Beverage Association (MSLBA) and other small business interests were gearing up for a 2019 General Assembly where nearly 30 percent of the members were new. That was a lot of new flesh to press, a lot of new ears to tug, a lot of new hearts and minds to win over to our industry's issues and concerns.

But guys like MSLBA Legislative Chairman Jack Milani and attorney and MSLBA lobbyist J. Steven "Steve" Wise were definitely up to the task.  "It was a learning year for a lot of folks," the former conceded, "especially with regards to alcohol legislation. It can be a difficult learning curve, and we know that. So, we did our usual Lobby Day and made sure our members connected with their legislators. All we ever want is an opportunity to explain our side. Sometimes legislators agree with us. Sometimes they don't. At the end of the day, you just want to feel like you were listened to."

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Revel's Avila is not just a new spirit – it represents the formation of a new category under the agave umbrella.  Like tequila, Revel Avila is distilled using 100% Blue Weber agave; however, that's where the similarities stop. Avila can only be produced using agave grown and distilled in the Morelos region, a small state in the south central part of Mexico with a distinctive terroir that's evident in the taste of the final product.

Unlike the Tequila region, which has been in operation for 400+ years, Morelos (the only place Avila can be produced) is new to agave growing, boasting pristine, alkaline-rich soil. The farmers and distillers share an unwavering commitment to authentic processes and techniques like natural bat pollination and the use of volcanic roasting pits.  

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Posted by on in January 2020 Editions

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The Vineyards of San Valentino were born from a dream and a great passion for the land and its fruits.  The vineyard is located in the region of Emilia
Romagna (Italy) on the hills of Rimini, but a few steps from the sea. Roberto Mascarin and his family have been producing wines from this territory bordered by the Adriatic Sea to the east and by the first peak of the Apennines to the west since 1990.

Their ViVi, Colli Di Rimini Rebola D.O.P. 2017 Organic Selection, wine is dedicated to Valeria Vivian, wife of Roberto Mascarin. The first vintage he made for this wine was the 2017, which is when he lost his wife to cancer. 

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