This website, Southern Maryland Food & Drink, formally launched about 6:30 AM on Sunday, January 15, with no fanfare whatsoever. This has been pretty much what you’d call a “soft rollout.” My wife Cindy and I being boaters, the process has felt rather like the slow and careful launch of a boat — therefore the title, and the use of a ship picture for the featured image.
The site was open to the world a few times, for even a few days, since October of last year, but for the most part had been kept in “under construction” mode — that was the sign you’d usually see if you tried the URL. At launch, we had 27 posts online (this will make 28), with at least another three posts in the draft stage. Among the posted items are reviews of restaurants and books, reports on visits to farms and stores, along with a variety of recipes for various dishes Cindy and I have prepared, and the occasional blog post, such as this one. The blog category is where I have felt free to write about things other than food and drink.
On launch day, our Food & Drink Business Directory had listings for 227 businesses (which we continue to add-to). If you look at the various categories listed and tot up the numbers shown, you’ll have a good bit higher number, because a number of businesses fall into more than a single category. I’d like to highlight two things about the listings:
- It includes what I believe to be the most complete and accurate list of Bed & Breakfasts in Southern Maryland. There are a variety of other lists out there, but I’ve found none as extensive as ours. Also, several of the other lists I’ve seen include places no longer in business.
- We have what is probably the most complete list of sources of Southern Maryland Stuffed Ham, as featured in our post “Southern Maryland stuffed ham: an overview,” which also includes a link to many recipes for the dish.
We got our first publicity when my sister posted a note about the new site on Facebook, which drew several people to the site. We have created a page for this site on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/SouthernMDFoodDrink/. For the past couple of days, I’ve been working on setting-up the ability to auto-post notices from this site to the Facebook page when posts go online. I’ve gone back into our list of published items and put notices about them on Facebook, and now as new posts are published, notices of them will show up there, too.
In coming days, we’ll start to do more in the way of promoting the site. If you know of anyone you think would appreciate it, please send them a link. Also, let us know what you think of what we’re doing here. ♦