Thursday, September 18, 2014

family dinner at zpizza (sponsored post)

If you follow Just Up The Pike on Facebook or Twitter (and you should!), you've probably heard me talk about my favorite restaurants in Silver Spring, places like Urban Butcher and Denizens Brewing Company. But I haven't spent a lot of time at zpizza on Ellsworth Drive, which at 10 years (has it been that long?) in downtown Silver Spring is practically an institution compared to some of these newer places.

Started in California in 1986, zpizza (it is spelled lowercase) considers itself the first "chef-inspired pizza chain." It has locations in 15 states and the District of Columbia, as well as South Korea, Vietnam, and the United Arab Emirates. The other week, I was invited to participate in a press dinner to try out some of their new menu items.

Why did I do it? Well, four weeks ago I moved out of the group house I was living in Park Hills, which our landlord put up for sale, and moved back in with my parents while waiting to move into my new home, which is a topic for another post. Zpizza offered to deliver pizza for 8 to my parents' house, and not being a great cook, I was eager to contribute to family dinner, especially given my family's predilection for Little Caesars.

When the pizzas arrived, I was a little shocked at how much we got:

Monday, September 8, 2014

the definitive history of east county

Crossing The Street, Stewart Lane at 29
A family tries to cross Columbia Pike in 2007. Photo by the author.
In yesterday's Washington Post, Bill Turque looks at increasing poverty in Montgomery County, much of which is clustered in East County neighborhoods like Briggs Chaney, located nine miles north of downtown Silver Spring.

I was trying to think of things to say about it, but the story manages to take things we've been talking about here for the past eight years and wraps it up into one overarching narrative and history of how East County got this way and what might happen next.

If you haven't read it yet, you you should do it now.