Last night I attended an opening party for Townhouse Kitchen + Bar in Harbor East, right down the block from RA Sushi. The swanky, new gastropub is one of about a dozen restaurants run by Chicago-based group Restaurants-America, but the first for the group in Maryland.
The space, in the bottom floor of the Eden building, is very modern with exposed ceilings, wooden accents, and high-fashion photos on the walls. There's a large bar in the center (with tons of flatscreen TVs), a glass-encased room for private parties, and various long "community tables," where a number of parties can eat at the same time (like Iggie's in Mt. Vernon). We ended up hanging out in the lounge, which has plush, leather furniture bathed in the natural light of floor-to-ceiling windows—a nice change of pace from typical dark longues.
Probably the most notable thing about Townhouse, from my perspective, is its self-serve beer taps at some of its tables, pictured. While this isn't an entirely new concept (Leinenkugel's Beer Garden has some, too), they're doing a few things differently. The touch-screen technology for patrons seems extremely state-of-the art. Each person gets 32-ounces of beer to start with then you can add or subtract ounces as you go, paying at the end.
Additionally, one of the taps was Stoli vodka, something I've never seen. They bring mixers (like orange and cranberry juice) to your table, emulating bottle service. Prices vary depending on the type of liquid you want, of course—Miller Lite runs you 25 cents per ounce, while a Dogfish Head 60 Minute clocks in at 38 cents per ounce. While that's kind of pricey ($4 for a 16-ounce Miller Lite), it's pretty standard for Harbor East. All the food we sampled (chicken tacos, yellowfin tuna stack, chicken salad sliders, beef tenderloin) was delicious, as well.
Townhouse is now open for lunch and dinner and seems like it will fit right in within ritzy Harbor East.
[Images: courtesy of Townhouse and me]