Steve Appel and Lee Whitehead found themselves in a design dilemma regarding the messy home of a wealthy client. She wanted to sell her house, but no one would buy the building in its current state. Instead of passing on the case, the duo visited the home and constructed a battle plan during a 10-hour consultation. Within the week, they'd completely repainted and replaced most of her furniture, readying her for a Saturday open house, and by Sunday, she'd received multiple offers from potential buyers. By Monday, the house was sold. As graphic-design majors and interior-design enthusiasts, Steve and Lee have used their talents in many such situations, under short time limits and with exceptional challenges, to refurbish a range of spaces—even helping famed baker Duff Goldman of Food Network's Ace of Cakes choose furnishings for his lobby at Charm City Cakes.
At Nouveau Contemporary Goods, the duo fills their space with an ever-changing roster of upholstery, dining sets, bed sets, and colorful crystal-infused wallpaper. Modern furnishings such as egg chairs and aquamarine crushed-velvet benches share a mutual territory with traditional pieces such as a red cabinet with a marble top and the actual couple who posed for American Gothic. In addition to showpieces, samplings of glass panels, blinds, and other window treatments ooze inspiration for potential clients coming up with their own projects. Anyone on a tight deadline can also count on the design duo for same-day delivery, be it for full showroom sets or unique recycled artwork and furniture.
Brothers Jimmy, Tony, and Nick Miller pioneered Buddy Maratta’s Cafe and Deli, christening it after their father’s childhood nickname, with the vision of enlightening palates to traditional Baltimore cuisine. Drawing on his degree from the Baltimore Culinary Institute and on years of fine-dining experience, Chef Nick whips up a menu of breakfast and lunch sandwiches and salads and calls upon the Miller mother and aunts to bake homemade desserts and cakes. Platters of specialty crab fries, braised-short-rib cheesesteaks, and a variety of gourmet salads emerge from the kitchen into a casual-dining area where rows of tabletops bask beneath hanging lights and framed artwork, among the free WiFi waves. In addition to dining in, patrons can request catering services for special events, meetings, and jury-duty reunions.
It didn't take long for Scott Nelowet to fall in love with french fries in Europe. While most fries he had tried in the US were droopy or overly crisp, the cones of Belgian fries had a crisp exterior paired with a soft interior due to the chefs' double-frying technique. Nelowet recreates these perfect fries at French Fry Heaven, but instead of serving them as the Belgians would?with mayo or vinegar?Nelowet devised a menu of more than 50 sweet and salty toppings, including brown sugar, cinnamon, caramel, cheese, and more.
Chefs begin by creating thick-cut slices of potatoes and sweet potatoes, which they then fry twice in gluten-free oil. Once fries have cooled, they pile on toppings, such as the French Quarter fries' Cajun seasoning and remoulade sauce or the cha cha fries' sweet and hot mix of cinnamon, sugar, and red hot chili sauce. Each order of fries can be further customized with flavorful salts, which have been infused with either black truffle, smoked wood, or ghost pepper for the hottest spice you can legally handle without putting your tongue through stop-drop-and-roll training.
Data entry, babysitting, and driving clients to or from the airport are just a few of the tasks in which the bonded, insured personal assistants of Chloe's Concierge specialize. They also provide relocation services that range from loading and unloading moving trucks to setting up furniture.
Herb & Soul chefs B. Taylor and David Thomas operate under a simple mantra with several implications. When they say their mission is to "feed the soul," they mean that their fried chicken, short ribs, and Georgia bread pudding are more than just items on the menu—they’re nourishing reminders of the home-cooked meals of childhood.
They also mean that they do their best to foster long-standing relationships with local farmers and stock their small, down-home establishment with organic produce, grass-fed meats, and sustainably sourced fish. Herb & Soul's support of sustainable agriculture benefits the environment as well, since the restaurant converts its waste into compost and recycles its oil on the kitchen’s slip 'n' slide.
Scott Nash started MOM's Organic Market in his mom's garage. He repurposed the space as a warehouse for organic goods, dispatching orders to local buyers. When he outgrew the space, he rented an actual warehouse, and then a bigger one, eventually outgrowing the home-delivery business and replacing it with a retail outlet. From there, the business mushroomed like a naturally grown, pesticide-free mushroom—it now maintains 10 retail locations across Maryland and Virginia. Each location subscribes to a single mission—to protect and restore the environment. Store managers stock organic and local products whenever possible, and reduce waste by minimizing packaging. To power their stores, they call upon natural energy sources, such as wind and the earth's molten core. As an added benefit, they buy in bulk to keep prices low and author recipes that transform organic produce into delicious meals.