June, 17th 2013

Foreman Wolf to open Columbia restaurant

Baltimore magazine

The Baltimore owners of five restaurants, including Charleston and Cinghiale, interior pictured, will open their newest venue at Columbia's lakefront in Howard County.

The restaurant concept will be announced at a later date, according to a press release.

Business partners Tony Foreman and chef Cindy Wolf also operate Pazo in Harbor East and Petit Louis and Johnny's in Roland Park. 

June, 14th 2013

Another Little Italy Restaurant Closes

Baltimore magazine

Della Notte Ristorante, a longtime Little Italy restaurant, will close after tomorrow's service, said Konstantin Amezhenko, the restaurant's assistant general manager.

It was a business decision, Amezhenko said.

When asked what would happen to the distinctive building located on a prominent corner at Eastern Avenue and President Street, he said, "I can't give you an answer."

The restaurant, with its ersatz piazza, complete with an indoor tree and classical architecture, pictured, was known for its straightforward Italian fare. 

June, 13th 2013

Let’s Eat Charles Street festival to take place Saturday

Baltimore magazine

Feast on everything from pizza to pad thai at the fourth annual Let’s Eat Charles Street festival to be held this Saturday.

Food vendors—including B&O American Brasserie, Ban Thai, Beef Brothers, Cazbar, Delia Foley’s, Home Slyce, Mick O’Shea’s, and Mina’s Delights—will set up their food stands along the 300 block of Charles Street between Saratoga and Mulberry.

The event runs from 12-5 p.m. and features drinks, craft vendors, including The Woman’s Industrial Exchange, and live music as well as food.

Megan Isennock from Downtown Partnership, one of the sponsors, explained, “The focus is to get people out having fun and supporting local food and craft vendors.”

Admission is free, so you can spend your money savoring the food. 

For more information, visit the Downtown Partnership event site.

-Laurnie Wilson

2:07 pm Comment Count Tags: events, festival
June, 12th 2013

Father’s Day Dining

Baltimore magazine

Are you looking to treat Dad this Father’s Day? On Sunday, June 16, the following restaurants will be serving up special meals to help celebrate the men in your life.

Fleet Street Kitchen 
What: Enjoy a $39 three-course, prix-fixe menu for brunch with options including caramelized sea scallop, brioche French toast, and corned beef hash. For dinner, order a la carte, or select the $49 three-course, prix-fixe option which boasts butter poached lobster, pan-roasted pork, and fried soft shell crab.
When: Brunch, 10:30 a.m.-4 p.m.; dinner, 5-9 p.m.
Reservations can be made online or by phone, 410-244-5830.

Fogo de Chao 
What: Indulge in Fogo’s 15 fire-roasted meats, expansive salad bar, and desserts. $39.50 for lunch; $49.50 for dinner.
When: Lunch, 11:30 a.m.-3 p.m.; dinner, 4-9 p.m.
Reservations can be made online or by phone, 410-528-9292. 

Live! Buffet, Maryland Live Casino 
What: Enjoy all-you-can-eat snow crabs and roast N.Y. strip loin for $29.99.
When: 5-9:30 p.m.; seating is first-come, first-served.
Reservations not accepted. 

Mt. Washington Tavern 
What: Order from the regular menu, or choose from the buffet, which will include pancakes, salmon, and chipped beef. Dads will also be given a complimentary bottle of Maker’s Mark BBQ Sauce and a recipe for the Tavern’s short ribs. Available while supplies last.
When: 11 a.m-10 p.m.
Reservations can be made online or by phone, 410-367-6903.

Old Stein Inn
The German-themed menu offers dishes such as shark schnitzel, spaetzle, and Bavarian apple cheesecake.
When: 11 a.m.-9 p.m.
Reservations can be made by phone, 410-798-6807.

The Prime Rib, Maryland Live Casino 
What: Choose between the savory porterhouse steak and the spicy shrimp and grits. Rocky Patel Premium Cigars will also be available for an additional cost.
When: Dinner, 5-9:30 p.m.
Reservations can be made online or by phone, 443-445-2970.

Sullivan’s Steakhouse
Decide between a 26-ounce tomahawk steak and a 14-ounce New York strip steak. Both are dry-aged. Dads can also enter a raffle to win a new golf bag.
When: 3 p.m.-10 p.m.
Reservations can be made online (link) or by phone, 410-384-6031.  

Ten Ten 
What: The a-la-carte menu, with macaroni and cheese gratin, a roasted vegetable sandwich, and a special Creekstone rib-eye, is available for brunch. For dinner, choose the a-la-carte menu and have your pick of selections such as bacon wrapped Medjool dates, potato gnocchi, and lamb ragout or opt for the $36 three-course, prix-fixe menu.
When: Brunch, 10:30 a.m.-4 p.m; dinner, 5 p.m.-9 p.m.
Reservations can be made online or by phone, 410-244-6867.

Vino Rosina
What: In addition to the regular brunch menu, specials will include soft-shell crabs, a breakfast burger, and bbq pork Benedict. The bar will also be showing the Orioles game at 1:35 p.m., with Natty Bohs for $1.50.
When: 12 p.m.-5 p.m.
Reservations can be made online or by phone, 410-528-8600.

Wine Market Bistro
What: Savor options from a limited a-la-carte menu, or select the $28 three-course, prix fixe menu. Choices on the prix-fixe menu include white gazpacho, soft shell crab sandwich, 72 hour short rib, and banana split pancakes.
When: 11 a.m-3 p.m.
Reservations can be made online or by phone, 410-244-6166.

-Laurnie Wilson 

June, 11th 2013

Michael's Cafe Expands

Baltimore magazine

While undergoing extensive renovations in its current location, Michael's Cafe in Timonium is also planning to open another restaurant next year.

It will also be called Michael's and will have a slightly different concept, according to a press release. But the new venue, to be located on Charles Street in Federal Hill, will still serve popular menu items like the crab cakes and burgers in addition to new dishes.

Meanwhile, the Timonium location is in the midst of big expansion, adding an area called The Patio at Michael's Cafe. It will include two bars, an outdoor lounge, and a dining area.

The first phase of the renovation is expected to be completed by the end of the summer, with other improvements taking place later this year. The restaurant remains fully operational during the construction.

The footprint—once a small neighborhood bar before opening as Michael's in 1990—has come a long way under the ownership of the Dellis family. 

June, 7th 2013

Cronuts Arrive in Baltimore

Baltimore magazine

In less than a month after Cronuts have become an international sensation, Baltimore is getting in on the craze.

"We've got CRONUTS. A homemade croissant donut stuffed with fresh strawberry & vanilla pudding. WHOA!" posted Regi's American Bistro on Facebook this afternoon. "These are THE REAL DEAL!"

The Federal Hill restaurant may have to rename the sought-after treat, though, since the name is trademarked. In San Diego, they're calling the pastry "Crobars." Others prefer "doissants."

Whatever portmanteau you use, the foodie obsession started in May when chef Dominique Ansel debuted the Cronut at his namesake bakery in New York's SoHo. Since then, patrons have been lining up for the pastries.

Because of the demand, the bakery has had to limit the number of Cronuts a patron can buy, creating a thriving black market. Huffington Post reported that there have been Cronut scalpers selling the sought-out $5 treats on Craigslist for $40.

At least, all we have to do for a Cronut (pictured with Regi's owner Alan Morstein) is head to Federal Hill. 

June, 6th 2013

Dishcrawl Comes to Baltimore

Baltimore magazine

The latest foodie phenomenon to hit Baltimore is Dishcrawl. The concept is simple: Once a month, a local guide leads a group of 25-40 hungry guests to four undisclosed, locally owned restaurants in a given area of the city.

The next Dishcrawl is scheduled for June 19 in Locust Point. The names of the restaurants are kept a secret, but the local organizer Rebecca Dulka has agreed to leak the name of one of the restaurants to us.

And that restaurant is … Wine Market Bistro.

Tickets are $45, not including alcoholic beverages, and can be purchased on Dishcrawl’s website

Here’s how it works. Guests taste three different dishes at each location. The first three stops provide savory options, while the last stop typically offers desserts.

Dulka explained that restaurants are selected for the crawl based on a number of criteria, including local buzz and recent reviews. She aims to create a unique experience that allows “each individual restaurant to stand out.”

If you have a dietary restriction, let Dishcrawl know at least 48 hours in advance and they’ll “try to accommodate” the request. 

Think of Dishcrawl as “a VIP ticket to four restaurants in one evening,” Dulka explains. It’s much more personal than simply visiting the restaurants yourself, as Dishcrawl arranges for the chef or restaurant owner to address the group, providing an insider’s perspective on the meal.

What’s more, you get the opportunity to mingle with other like-minded (read: food-loving) people in the area, which makes for both a great social and culinary experience.

— Laurnie Wilson

12:45 pm Comment Count Tags: local foods, trend
June, 5th 2013

Heavy Seas Alehouse to Host Guest Chef Dinner

Baltimore magazine

On June 26, a talented lineup of chefs from around the country will combine their culinary know-how at Heavy Seas Alehouse to please palates and raise money for the Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults.

Participating chefs are Sisha Ortuzar of riverpark (a Tom Colicchio restaurant), New York City; Ed Carew of Spasso, New York City; Cathal Armstrong of Restaurant Eve, Alexandria, VA; Spike Gjerde of Woodberry Kitchen; and Matt Seeber of Heavy Seas Alehouse.

Noted mixologist Ryan Maybee of The Rieger Hotel Grill & Exchange in Kansas City will be preparing drinks for the evening.

The event begins at 6:30 p.m. The cost of the five-course dinner, including 12 beverages, is $100. Tickets can be purchased here.

The restaurant will be closed to the public that night.

—Laurnie Wilson

June, 5th 2013

S'ghetti Eddie's to Close

Baltimore magazine

S'ghetti Eddie's, known for its pizzas, hoagies, and wings, will close on June 12. The restaurant is owned by the Crazy Man Restaurant Group, which also operates the Miss Shirley's restaurants and food truck.

S'ghetti is being closed to accommodate the growth of Miss Shirley's, according to a press release. Its closure will open up more parking spaces for diners at the Miss Shirley's on W. Cold Spring La.

The Crazy Man group will continue to maintain the property. 

June, 3rd 2013

Winners of "A Taste of Two Cities"

Baltimore magazine

Gyspy Queen CafeUPDATED. Baltimore wins again. For the second year, Gypsy Queen Cafe food truck took the first-place Mayor's Cup Trophy at Saturday's "A Taste of Two Cities" at Rash Field in the Inner Harbor.

Despite the heat, thousands of food lovers attended the event, where about 40 trucks lined the waterfront location. People took solace in any shady spot, including two big tents with chairs and tables.

The other top winners in the Baltimore vs. D.C. food-truck competition were: second place, El Cuervo (Baltimore), which specializes in tacos and Korean fried chicken, and third place, Feelin' Crabby (D.C.). The People's Choice Awards went to Gypsy Queen (pictured above, which always draws a crowd) and Rito Loco (D.C.), known for its burritos.

Souper FreakOther awards were given in specialty categories. Best Healthy Choice went to Souper Freak (Baltimore), whose chilled soups hit the spot as temps hit the 90s. While the Five Seeds fennel and carrot soup (pictured left, won), the truck's smoked gazpacho that we sampled was also very good.

Best Barbecue went to South Carolina BBQ (Baltimore); Best Sandwich to El Cuervo (Baltimore), and Best Dessert to IcedGems (Baltimore).

A Facebook commenter noted on The Gathering Facebook page: "When you go to an event where only Baltimore residents go, of course, they will vote for the local truck. Let's see when you all come down to DC in September which city takes the trophy."

There's a challenge. I don't have particulars, but it looks like there may be a fall rematch in the works.

Because of the prediction of heavy rain on Friday, this event is rescheduled to July 19. If you missed Saturday's feast, 15 Baltimore food trucks will gather from 5-10 p.m. on Friday at Du Burns Arena in Canton for another opportunity to savor some of the best food in Baltimore.

Photo of soups courtesy of Greg Haughey 

11:14 am Comment Count Tags: events, food trucks
May, 30th 2013

Baltimore Chefs Cook Tonight in New York

Baltimore magazine

Baltimore is representing at the James Beard House in New York City tonight. And if you weren't able to shell out $170 for the dinner, you can still salivate over the menu.

Chad Gauss of The Food Market in Hampden, Cyrus Keefer and Sajin Renae of The Fork & Wrench in Canton, and Birroteca owner Robbin Haas and chef Melanie Molinaro will be making Baltimore proud with dishes like:

Gunpowder bison tartare, deviled popcorn Marvesta shrimp, striped bass crudo, a blue-crab crab cake with sea-urchin mayo, and a multilayer Smith Island cake, our state dessert, of course.

The dinner also includes an Eastern Shore buffet that sounds amazing with items like crispy-skin rockfish with Chesapeake-spiced jus and caramelized ramp essence.

You can check out the whole menu on the James Beard Foundation website.

Have fun, chefs. 

Photo courtesy of Cyrus's wife, Angela, when they arrived at the famed location this afternoon.

May, 30th 2013

Watch The Pie Man on Food Network Star

Baltimore magazine

You don't have to watch Food Network Star alone. Stop by one of the three local viewing parties around Baltimore.

Rodney Henry aka The Pie Man will be vying against nine other contestants on the show, premiering at 9 p.m. on Sunday.

Dangerously Delicious Pies in Canton will have lots of pie on hand for the viewing, as will Rocket to Venus in Hampden and Lil’ Phil’s Tavern in Fells Point.

Meanwhile, Rodney will be in California, as we cheer him on from afar.

-Laurnie Wilson 

May, 28th 2013

Lineup Announced for "A Taste of Two Cities"

Baltimore magazine

Rev up those taste buds. Here is a list of the food trucks that have agreed to be at "A Taste of Two Cities" on Saturday.

The Baltimore trucks include: Busia's Kitchen, Charm City Gourmet, Chicken 'n Waffle, Cruisin' Cafe, Darua Brazilian, El Cuervo, Flavor Cupcakery, The Great Cookie, Grr Che, Gyspy Queen, Iced Gems, The Jolly Pig, Kommie Pig, Miss Shirley's, Miss Twist, Philly Mignon, Souperfreaks, South Carolina BBQ, The Sultan, and Wheyich.

D.C.'s trucks are: Cajunators, Carnivoir, DC Ballers, Eat Carolina, El Floridano, Feeling Crabby, Lemongrass Truck, MOJO Truck, Popped Republic, Porc, Red Hook Lobster Pound, Rito Loco, Sang on Wheels, Something Stuffed, and That Cheesecake Truck

The face-off between the Baltimore and D.C. trucks goes from noon-9 p.m. at Rash Field in the Inner Harbor. Each city is hoping to win the Mayor's Cup.

The cost is $5 in advance at missiontix; $8 at the door. Kids 12 and younger are free. There will be drinks for sale and live music, too.

I'm already planning my eating strategy. 

May, 22nd 2013

A Soft-Shell Crab Celebration

Baltimore magazine

The soft shells are back! Kick off Memorial Day weekend at more than a dozen restaurants participating in the fourth annual Maryland Soft Shell Crab Celebration from May 24-June 2.

Vino Rosina gets things rolling with a four-course menu for $55 a person on Thursday, featuring a soft-shell crab cake, cream-of-soft-shell-crab soup, soft-shell-crab pretzel, and a soft-shell-crab "sammie." Reservations are requested.

Other restaurants participating in the event sponsored by the Downtown Partnership of Baltimore are:

Alexander's Tavern, B&O American Brasserie, The Black Olive, Charleston, Diamond Tavern, Fleet Street Kitchen, Grille 700, J. Paul's, Kona Grill, La Scala, McCormick & Schmick's, Miss Shirley's, The Oceanaire, Pabu, Phillips Seafood, Regi's American Bistro, Roy's Hawaiian Fusion, Ryleigh's Oyster, Ten Ten, Townhouse Kitchen & Bar, and Waterfront Kitchen.

The restaurants get creative with dishes like soft-shell crabs prepared with spinach and feta and wrapped in phyllo pastry (The Black Olive), tempura soft-shell po' boy baguette (Diamond Tavern), and twin whale soft-shell crabs sautéed with chili butter, fava beans, and mint corn salad (Regi's).

Check out the menus here. 

May, 17th 2013

The Food Market Throws a First Birthday Party

Baltimore magazine

This may one of the most exciting food events of the season. To celebrate its first birthday, The Food Market in Hampden is hosting a party from 6-10 p.m. on Wednesday, June 5, to celebrate the past year and to benefit The Hampden Family Center.

The restaurant—owned by chef Chad Gauss and business partner Elan Kotz—has invited several local chefs to prepare hors d'oeuvres and sweets for the event. What an impressive crew:

Cyrus Keefer of Fork & Wrench

Sergio Vitale of Aldo's and Chazz

Robbin Haas of Birroteca

Jonah Kim of PABU

Denise Whiting of Café Hon

Vernon Forward of City Café

Chris Becker and Bettina Perry of Fleet Street Kitchen

Opie Crooks of Roy's

Timothy Dyson of Bluegrass Tavern.

There is going to be some seriously delicious food being served. Craft beers are being provided by Union Craft Brewing.

The cost is $35 a person; tickets are available online through PayPal at The Food Market's website.

It's going to be a fun party! 

12 issues for $18!