To the governors of Maryland and Kansas, Sunday’s AFC Championship is not just a battle between the Ravens and the Chiefs, but a matter of barbecue versus crab pies.

On Friday afternoon, Gov. Wes Moore promised to deliver Crust by Mack’s famous crab pies to Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly if the Baltimore Ravens were to fumble by the post-season’s finish line. In turn, Kelly would ship Creekstone Farms steaks all the way from the sunflower state if Kansas City’s Chiefs were to fall flat.

“Governor Kelly has an incredible record when it comes to these bets,” Moore said in a statement Friday. “But I think our Ravens, led by this year’s undoubted MVP Lamar Jackson, are going to break the streak this year!”

Kelly thanked Moore for his hospitality, but said in a statement, “I’m confident I’ll be enjoying some Crust by Mack’s crab pies very soon.”

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In the back-and-forth, one true winner emerged: Amanda Mack.

The owner of Crust by Mack told The Banner she was thrilled to be included in such a public debate. She referred to her business as “authentically Baltimore” and a home to the city’s “official crab pie.”

Mack was the first temporary tenant to sign on to Harborplace as the property underwent a period of redevelopment, according to a previous Banner report. She never expected to open a brick-and-mortar store along the Inner Harbor — an achievement she said appeared out of reach for local Black entrepreneurs. But developer David Bramble aspired to bring Crust by Mack — with its cult-like following around Mack’s savory meat pie and buttery rich cookies — into the fold.

“It’s a beautiful feeling to have been both seen and supported,” she said of Crust by Mack’s featuring in the governors’ playful politics.

A spokesman for Moore said the governor has been a big fan of Mack’s food since trying her pies at a prior event.

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While the Kansas City Chiefs’ home stadium is in Missouri — not Kansas — Missouri Gov. Mike Parson was not included in the wager. Moore’s spokesman said Kelly and Moore are longtime friends who were looking forward to placing their bets.

Other local politicians have raised the stakes for Sunday’s game, too. Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas and Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott levied their own bets between cities earlier this week.

On Facebook, the Charm City representative reminded Lucas that the Ravens had prevailed against the Chiefs during their last meeting in M&T Stadium. If the Baltimore team were to lose, Scott promised two dozen crabs from Captain James Seafood Palace, a can of Old Bay, a video of Scott in a Chiefs jersey and to “turn city hall red.”

While we hope turning city hall red is just a fun way of saying he will be switching out some lighting, Lucas took the offer very seriously. He responded this afternoon, saying if his beloved Chiefs were to falter, he would send over Kansas City-branded gear made by the Charlie Hustle vintage T-shirt company, and Jack Stack barbecue which, I concede, is delicious.

Matti Gellman is a Food Reporter for The Baltimore Banner. 

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