Two Queens, The Governor, and Soft-Shelled Crabs: The 2016 Governor’s Maryland Buy-Local Cookout

Once again, the 2016 Governor’s Cookout was the place to be for the finest interpretations of our amazing local ingredients.  Even the July evening was temperate for the time of year.

There were opportunities to schmooze with interesting characters and eat really good food.  This event is held annually to promote our terrific Chesapeake-area products.  There are old friends, and surprises, every time.

Eating and Schmoozing

Eating and Schmoozing

Governor Hogan took the occasion to issue a Proclamation.

The Secretary of Agriculture, Joe Bartenfelder, and Gov. Hogan Proclaim

The Secretary of Agriculture, Joe Bartenfelder, and Gov. Hogan Proclaim

With Yumi Hogan

With Yumi Hogan

Afterwards, there were selfies.

Smile, Governor!

Smile, Governor!

I saw two Queens in the crowd – Miss Maryland Agriculture and the Mar-Del Watermelon Queen.  The MDWQ had an appropriate fashion accessory.

Two Queens Pose

Two Queens Pose

I heard a rumor that the Maryland Dairy Princess was also there, but I didn’t see her.  There were many other interesting folks, however.  Foremost among them was the Bee Lady.

Talking About Bees,and Offering Tastes of Honey

Talking About Bees,and Offering Tastes of Honey

Sue Langley, a member of the Maryland State Beekeepers Association, cares for the hives sited on the Government House grounds.  The honey produced was used in a dessert served at the tent hosted by none other than the Governor’s wife, Yumi.  Also featured: her famous bulgogi.

Yumi Hogan (r) at Government House Tent

Yumi Hogan (r) at Government House Tent

Dessert with Government House Honey

Dessert with Government House Honey

Ms. Langley had a good view of the action.

View From the Bee Table

View From the Bee Table

For other local color, the Naval Academy was represented by Ensign Wiechec.

Mr. Wiechec Represents

Ensign Wiechec Represents

There was a guy with a tea towel on his back – and not one of Maryland, either!

Where's His Maryland Pride?

Where’s His Maryland Pride?

Luckily, the other patrons and vendors had plenty of Maryland spirit to go around – for instance,  Chad Sargent and his helper, of Chad’s BBQ in Edgewater.  His motto: “Good barbecue comes from experience, and experience, well, that comes from poor barbecue.”

State Pride on Display

State Pride on Display

There were tables full of Maryland wine, and tables full of Maryland spirits (the alcoholic kind).  In fact, there has been explosive growth in local distilleries lately (there’s a post coming about that – stay tuned).

Also, there was watermelon art.

Watermelon With State Pride

Watermelon With State Pride

As for the food on offer, it was the usual excellent use of local products.  My favorites were the oysters and the soft-shell crabs, although everything else was so good, it was hard to choose.

Shucking Oysters

Galway Bay Crew Shucking Oysters

Oyster Still Life

Oyster Still Life

Pat Mahoney of Wild Country Seafood and George Betz of Boatyard Bar and Grill

Pat Mahoney of Wild Country Seafood and George Betz of Boatyard Bar and Grill

Close-Up on the Soft Shell BLT

Close-Up on the Soft Shell BLT

Black Bottom Farms, of Galena (where is that? in Kent County, on the Eastern Shore), had a display of beautiful exotic mushrooms.

Totally Photogenic Mushrooms

Totally Photogenic Mushrooms

Each year, the Maryland Department of Agriculture produces a cookbook with the recipes featured at this event.  You can find it here.

 

About Judy

I have been cooking and eating all my life. I help run the Olney Farmers and Artists Market in Olney, Maryland, arrange their weekly chef demos and blog from that website (olneyfarmersmarket.org) on Market matters. This personal blog is for all things foodie: cookbooks, products, restaurants, eating.
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