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Posted at 10:54 AM ET, 02/08/2007

Restaurant Options

Since several people pointed out that the most interesting part of my too-long post on OT Magazine was the tidbit on Chris Webber's restaurant (the 44 oz. "Fab Five" burger for $29.50, the "C Webb's Game Day Chicken Sandwich" with American cheese, lettuce, ketchup and tabasco), I figured I should explore more Athlete/Restauranteur menus.

(Btw, in addition to the stack of ESPN the Mags and OT mags in the Wiz locker room, you can also pick up a copy of the duPont Registry, either car or boat version.)

Anyhow, Nate Thurmond opened Big Nate's Barbeque in San Fran, which "makes you feel like you're back in Carolina," except the weather's better and houses cost a lot more and the NASCAR track is winding instead of oval and "Nancy" means the House Speaker, not the comic strip. There are a few basketball-themed menu items, but they confuse me. For example, the "Three Point Combo" deal allows you to choose three of Pork Ribs, Chicken, Chicken, Beef Brisket, Beef Link and Memphis Pork. "Chicken is the only option that you may choose twice," we're reminded. What if I want two Beef Links?

"Former NBA great (?)" Derrick Coleman has a stake in Detroit's Sweet Georgia Brown, which has a legitimately compelling menu. I was particularly struck by the $13 Pastrami Smoked Salmon appetizer, featuring cornichons, minced red onion, riced eggs, fried capers and water crackers, with fresh tarragon mustard aioli. (As an aside, after last night's local NBA game, a man wearing a chef's hat carried more than a dozen personal-sized Papa John's pizzas into the Spurs locker room. I believe they came with Papa John's garlic-butter dipping sauce, or, as I like to call it, the dipping aioli.)

Four-time Pro Bowl guard Max Montoya runs four Penn Station East Coast Subs franchises in Northern Kentucky, which I suppose is a fair enough way to make a living but seems less glamorous than an NFL career. I always figured ex-NFL stars would never stoop below Quizno's. Anyhow, Penn Station's menu doesn't mention tarragon mustard aioli, either, but they do offer an artichoke sub with provolone, oregano, parmesan and mayo. Never had an artichoke sub before.

Naturally, there are more high-profile dining establishments, such as Wayne Gretzky's in Toronto, where the specialties include Gretzky's Famous Meatloaf, "homemade from Grandma Gretzky's secret recipe," an "heirloom classic" that is "rubbed with Dijon mustard and simmered in fragrant onion gravy." And don't forget the "Great White North" pizza, featuring Canadian back bacon, spicy sausage, smoked ham, tomato sauce and jalapeno jack cheese. I mostly just included that last one so I can attempt to compete with the Wizznutzz in bacon references. Don't forget, yesterday's Gary Williams item had bacon, too.

Then there's Pujols 5 Westport Grill, where Albert and DeeDee's favorites include Arroz Con Pollo (Dominican Inspired Chicken and Rice, Homerun style, which I assume means the chicken is 100 percent organic and hormone-free), and Center Cut Pork Chop, "Lightly smoked over hickory wood, brushed with a pineapple glaze, grilled and served with maple glazed sweet potato and (naturally) hickory smoked bacon." Cristal goes for $445 a bottle.

Locally, there's the much-written about Ray Lewis's Full Moon Bar-B-Que, which offers collectable Ray Lewis Pilsner glasses and something called "Pig in a Potato," which is "topped with butter, sour cream, grated cheddar cheese, scallions, bacon bits, pork and Bar-B-Que sauce." Cholesterol: the silent, well, you know.

And who could forget Georgetown star Reggie Williams's Bowie-based Reggie's Sports Kafe, which hates the letter C and therefore offers a Kalendar, a Kontact form and Katering options. (The menu, oddly, features Catfish instead of Katfish, and Crab Cakes instead of Krab Kakes, and Cheesecake instead of Kheesekake.) As for the Sweet Potato Pie, it's "A sweet sensation .... sweet potatoes blended with all the right ingredients prepared by none other than 'REGGIE'." Sounds great, although I always dreamed of eating sweet Hoya confections handmade by Ruben Boumjte-Boumjte.

By  |  10:54 AM ET, 02/08/2007

Categories:  NBA

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