A very unusual Elvis sighting was reported recently on Baltimore’s WJZ-TV. The ‘King’ has apparently been making deliveries of wine and spirits in the harbor area, including the peninsula, since the pandemic descended on our city.
Not that unusual a sight, however, to peninsula residents familiar with Otterbein bon vivant Jim Glick, bartender at Cross Street Market’s Old Line Cocktail & Wine Bar. While Old Line has been shuttered since March when the Market closed its doors, Jim has been working for Canton Crossing Wine & Spirits, which also owns the bar.
His mission: delivering wine and spirits around town.
His madness: donning various disguises, including Elvis Presley, to bring an extra bit of joy and surprise to his customers.
We caught up with Jim this weekend for a quick email interview:
Peninsula Post: How many different personalities “assist you” in delivering spirits and joy around Baltimore?
Glick: Let’s see. There’s Sriracha Man, Tuxedo Man, and Rich Uncle Penny Bags from Monopoly. And of course, Elvis
PP: How do you (or they) decide which one is delivering on a certain day?
Glick: There are certain factors at play. Weather. Mood. And for Elvis, if the company van is available 😉
PP: What was your most fun encounter with a delivery customer while costumed? And have you had any harrowing experiences as The Masked Deliveryman?
Glick: I re-wrote the lyrics to “I Can’t Help (Falling in Love with You)” to “I Will Help (Bringing Your Beer to You)” and sang as Elvis to a customer. I have had zero negative reactions.
PP: What do you miss most from working at Old Line Spirits in the Market?
Glick: I miss 2020 BC (Before Corona) and the way we could connect: a handshake, a hug, a smile. I miss the way we could wedge between or behind each other, the din of people’s voices and kids laughing, the camaraderie of the Market. I miss the role that bars play in our social structure, casual drop-in spots where if you’re not meeting a friend, you’ll make one or two. I miss the way things were. In 2020 BC, bars were places of refuge – stress free and easy going. I hope we can get back to that.
Jim has been sharing his mixological talents with friends in an appropriately socially distanced manner: a regular “COVID Cocktails” email giving suggestions for concoctions with an emphasis on the simple. Here’s No. 3:
I’m staying on the “Keeping it Simple” theme: this week it’s a Bourbon Sour.
For this one, you’ll need a cocktail shaker. If you don’t have one, you can improvise with 2 nesting glasses.
You’ll also need to make some simple syrup. They call it simple for a reason. It’s a 50/50 mix of sugar to water brought to a gentle bubbling for 15 minutes then removed from heat and allowed to cool. It should be a thick, viscous, pourable solution when all is said in done.
Pick your favorite bourbon. Add 2 ounces to the cocktail shaker. Add 1/2 ounce freshly squeezed lemon juice and 1 ounce simple syrup. Add ice and shake vigorously. Strain into fresh glass with fresh ice. Garnish with a cherry and a lemon peel.
Sit back, relax, sip and enjoy. Repeat. I hope you find this one as delicious as I do.
Meanwhile stay well and stay optimistic.