Category Archives: Baltimore Magazine

What is your stance on taking kids to nice restaurants?

Source: Baltimore Magazine Food & Dining

Talking Points

Baltimore magazine

 “When I’m out to dinner, the last thing I want to hear is a screaming kid.”

Kelly Manly, mortgage loan closer

“I don’t mind a well-behaved child . . . as long as the parent doesn’t mind the possibility of adult conversations around their child.”

 Annie Zeiler, hairstylist at FX Studios

“More importantly, what about the [people] that get drunk and talk so unbelievably loud that you can hear them across the room?”

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Baltimore’s Very Own Bacon Festival

Source: Baltimore Magazine - In Good Taste

Immerse yourself in a culinary wonderland of bacon on Saturday, April 26, at the inaugural Maryland Bacon Festival. Tickets go on sale at 2 p.m. tomorrow (Wednesday) for the event at Rash Field at the Inner Harbor.

The day, sponsored by America Loves Bacon, will feature 30 of the area’s top restaurants and food trucks, demos, samples, bacon-eating contests, and even a bacon-themed kids zone.

A Maryland Bacon-Off will also take place, pitting chefs and mixologists against each other in various categories to see who has the top bacon skills and creativity.

There will also be music and full-service ...

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Two James Beard Finalists for Baltimore

Source: Baltimore Magazine - In Good Taste

Cindy WolfOut of a pack of 20 James Beard Awards semifinalists for Best Chef: Mid-Atlantic, Baltimore chefs Spike Gjerde and Cindy Wolf made it to the final five. The winner will be announced on May 5 in New York.

Both chefs have been nominated in the past. Spike—who owns Woodberry Kitchen, Artifact Coffee, Shoo-Fly Diner, and the soon-to-open Parts & Labor with his wife Amy, was a finalist last year.

Cindy, who has headed the kitchen at Charleston since 1997 and is a major player in the Foreman Wolf restaurant group, has been a finalist twice.

The other chef finalists ...

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A Taste of Baltimore, D.C., and Philly

Source: Baltimore Magazine - In Good Taste

For the past two years, A Taste of Two Cities has pitted the food trucks of Baltimore and D.C. against each other. This year, Philadelphia will add its mobile trucks to the competition.

Its organizer bills A Taste of Three Cities as “the largest food truck event ever held in the state of Maryland” on The Gathering Facebook page. Whatever the superlative, an assembly of 50 vehicles bearing all manner of food is pretty impressive.

The event will be held on Saturday, May 31, at lots B and C at M&T Bank Stadium, or, as some may call it, Ravens ...

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Irish Fare for the Whole Weekend

Source: Baltimore Magazine - In Good Taste

Celebrating St. Patrick’s Day is about more than just beer and wearing green. Getting a good Irish meal in your belly is also key, and Baltimore has a wide variety of options to choose from.

For a weekend-long celebration, head to James Joyce Irish Pub & Restaurant. There will be live music all day on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday, including Danny Burns, Crossing Celtic, The Shamrogues, and Laura Byrne. Fill up on potato soup or beef and Guinness stew, pictured, to complete the Irish experience.

Victoria Gastro Pub in Columbia will be serving corned beef and cabbage in ...

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Spike’s Parts & Labor Coming Soon

Source: Baltimore Magazine - In Good Taste

butcher Geoge MarshGet a first-hand look at the work of butcher George Marsh as he leads a lesson on how to break down half a hog. The class, followed by a three-course supper, will be held at Artifact Coffee at 6 p.m. on April 1.

Marsh, pictured left, is the head butcher at Parts & Labor, the latest offering by Spike and Amy Gjerde, who also run Artifact, Woodberry Kitchen, and Shoo-Fly Diner. The new Remington space at 2600 N. Howard St. will house a full-service butcher shop and a restaurant.

The butcher shop will open in late March and showcase ...

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Actor Woody Harrelson Buys a Local Inn

Source: Baltimore Magazine - In Good Taste

The troubled Inn at the Black Olive received an infusion of new life with its purchase by actor Woody Harrelson and local banker Jack Dwyer. The Baltimore Business Journal broke the news today.

I caught up this afternoon with Dimitris Spiliadis, whose family owned the boutique hotel until they ran into financial difficulty a year ago. After filing for bankruptcy, the property ended up with its mortgage holder.

With the new partners, Dimitris will continue to manage the 12-suite inn, which includes a market and a restaurant. His parents, Stelios and Pauline, will handle the family’s long-time restaurant The Black ...

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Band of Brothers

Source: Baltimore Magazine Food & Dining

A friendship among local chefs is a recipe for success on Baltimore’s culinary scene.

Baltimore magazine

Sometimes, local chefs connect in unusual ways. Last fall, en route to Hampden’s The Food Market, chef/co-owner Chad Gauss was driving his Mercedes-Benz when a Honda Pilot pulled past a stop sign on Keswick Road, nearly careening into his car. The Honda stopped in the knick of time, but Gauss was pretty angry, launching a few “F-bombs.” Then, he realized that the car’s driver was none other than fellow culinary colleague Chris Becker, chief operations officer for the Bagby Restaurant Group.

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That’s Just Peachy

Source: Baltimore Magazine Food & Dining

Canned fruit adds a touch of summer to your day.

Baltimore magazine

We found just the antidote to the wintertime blues—canned peaches. These aren’t those limp, pale slices you usually find in grocery stores. These are tree-ripened, golden halves from nearby orchards that have been processed so we can enjoy them all year long.

For a splurge, we turn to Toigo Orchards Bourbon Peaches, pictured, $15.99, from Shippensburg, PA, available at area Whole Foods.

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Little Italy’s Milan Gets a New Owner

Source: Baltimore Magazine - In Good Taste

A section of the closed Milan restaurant on Eastern Avenue in Little Italy is reopening as Affogato Café & Gelato within two weeks, its new owner Alain Kalantar said today. But that’s only part of the project.

Alain, a D.C. restaurateur who has been in the hospitality business for 20 years, is also renovating the rest of the multilevel building into a full-scale restaurant that he’s hoping will be open in August.

He didn’t want to share the details of the concept at this time, calling it a “surprise.” “A lot of money plus hearts and souls are going into ...

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The Comeback of Merlot

Source: Baltimore Magazine Food & Dining

Merlot has endured a tarnished reputation for years.

Baltimore magazine

Merlot has endured a tarnished reputation for years. Many insiders blame the movie Sideways for making fun of Merlot drinkers while extolling the virtues of Pinot Noir; I’m not convinced an indie film, no matter how good, was solely responsible for Merlot’s downfall. Perhaps we were all simply yearning for lighter-bodied reds. Nonetheless, most of the Merlot out there is well worth checking out.

Neyers Merlot Napa Valley 2010

$40, Prestige Beverage Group

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Another Takeover at Artifact Coffee

Source: Baltimore Magazine - In Good Taste

Artifact takeoverThe menu is mouthwatering. House-made biscuits with Buffalo-style fried chicken with Woodberry Kitchen’s snake-oil hot sauce, pictured, and BBQ pulled pork with local pork and slaw ingredients are just some of the dishes offered Thursday-Saturday from 6-10 p.m. at Artifact Coffee.

The Union Mill restaurant is collaborating with the husband-and-wife duo Kyle Bailey and Tiffany Macissac of Birch & Barley, GBD, and Arsenal in D.C.

Tiffany’s sought-after GBD doughnuts, pictured, will also be available on Friday morning from 7-11 a.m. They can be pre-ordered by the half-dozen ($14) at Artifact or purchased a la carte.

A ...

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Pabu Celebrates Its Re-Opening

Source: Baltimore Magazine - In Good Taste

Closed since January 29 due to a water leak, Pabu in Harbor East is set to re-open in style on Friday, offering guests food, fun, and drinks.

Japanese Taiko drummers, a sake station, and music by DJ Jay Gray will be just some of the events at the party, which begins at 6 p.m. The restaurant’s spring cocktail selection will also be available.

Okonomiyaki (a savory Japanese pancake), fried chicken (pictured), and pork loin will be featured on executive chef Jonah Kim’s menu, followed by desserts from new executive pastry chef Dyan Ng.

The cost is $30 plus ...

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Now Playing at Creative Alliance

Source: Baltimore Magazine Food & Dining

The Marquee Lounge merits its own billing.

Baltimore magazine

Sure, it’s convenient to stop at the Marquee Lounge for a beer and a bite to eat before or after a show at Creative Alliance at the Patterson in Highlandtown. But you don’t really need a performance as an excuse to sidle up to the bar or take a seat at one of the restaurant’s bare wood tables. The small, lively bistro is a destination unto itself. For a short time, the Hamilton restaurant Clementine managed the space, installing one of its former sous chefs in the kitchen.

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Sugar Rush

Source: Baltimore Magazine Food & Dining

We Find Our Favorite Sweet Treats

Baltimore magazine

“How do I love thee?” Let us count the ways—a dozen doughnuts, a handful of chocolates, two almond croissants, and three scoops of ice cream. Okay, maybe that’s not exactly what Elizabeth Barrett Browning had in mind. But sonnets aside, sweets and love are a natural pair any time of year, especially in February when a gift of candy means more than calories on Valentine’s Day. In fact, it’s the fourth biggest holiday for confectionery purchases (after Halloween, Easter, and Christmas), according to candyusa.com.

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A First Look at The Valley Inn’s Dining Room

Source: Baltimore Magazine - In Good Taste

Valley Inn dining roomThe Valley Inn has slowly unveiled its personality over the past few months, starting with limited pub hours and gradually expanding service to seven days a week. Tonight, a renovated dining room will also be open for food and drinks.

The 60-seat room, pictured top, has a handsome, masculine feel with a thoroughbred-racing theme, honoring such places as Pimlico Race Course, Sagamore Farm, and Saratoga in New York. Every wall houses artwork and accouterments, including items found in a jockey’s locker, pictured left.

The booths and banquets feature rich-brown sapele-mahogany tables and butternut walls. Jockey lamps will eventually ...

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Smell the Coffee

Source: Baltimore Magazine Food & Dining

Becka Dowding, head barista at Dooby’s Coffee in Mt. Vernon, shares her tips and tricks for staying warm by making latte art and pour-over coffee at home.

Baltimore magazine

Whole Latte Love

To make your own latte art at home, it’s important to start with whole milk because the fats create a velvety texture. Also, when steaming milk, hold the pitcher at an angle to create a swirl.


Tilt your cup to one side so that, when you start pouring your steamed milk, it goes underneath the espresso.

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Savoring Soul Power

Source: Baltimore Magazine Food & Dining

Southern staples shine at the Charles Village eatery.

Baltimore magazine

When the vacant corner spot that once housed the venerable M & J’s Soul Food at 25th and St. Paul streets began to show signs of activity earlier last year, we were giddy with anticipation for the comfort foods it promised. Finally, Georgia Soul Food opened in August and has already amassed a loyal following. Some hardcore enthusiasts may decry the absence of soul-food pillars like hog maws and feet as heresy—the menu being a fairly vanilla roster of home-style dishes—but what Georgia does, it does well.

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Why Not Open a Volt in Baltimore?

Source: Baltimore Magazine - In Good Taste

aggio pastaBryan Voltaggio—chef/co-owner of the acclaimed restaurant Volt in Frederick and a former Top Chef runner-up—knew he wanted to open a restaurant in Baltimore. And just as assuredly, he knew it wasn’t going to be a version of his flagship success.

“It’s one I never want to replicate,” said Bryan, who also operates Family Meal in Frederick and Range and Aggio in D.C. “It started all the stuff for us, our core values. There can only be one.”

Instead, he thought Aggio, which he opened February 14 inside Range, would be a good fit for Baltimore with its locavore Italian-Mediterranean ...

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How to Cut Up a Chicken

Source: Baltimore Magazine - In Good Taste

If the thought of preparing a chicken dish from start to finish is intimidating, an upcoming workshop may be the perfect solution.

A butchery and cooking class will be held on Thursday, February 27, at the Four Seasons Hotel Baltimore, beginning at 6 p.m. It will be taught by the hotel’s French master butcher Marc Pauvert and executive chef Oliver Beckert.

Guests will learn how to buy and butcher a chicken with Pauvert, while Beckert will present chicken recipes and cooking techniques.

The $75 reservation includes the class, an evening of food and wine, a recipe book, and a ...

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Two Baltimore Chefs Are James Beard Semifinalists

Source: Baltimore Magazine - In Good Taste

Spike GjerdeSeasoned Baltimore chefs Spike Gjerde of Woodberry Kitchen and Cindy Wolf of Charleston were picked today as James Beard Foundation Award semifinalists in the Best Chef: Mid-Atlantic category. The finalists will be named on March 18 with the winners being announced in May.

Both chefs have been nominated in the past. Spike was a finalist last year. Cindy has been a finalist twice.

I caught up with Spike—who also runs Artifact Coffee and Shoo-Fly Diner and will be opening his new butcher shop Parts & Labor in Remington next month—on the phone. “It’s the ultimate team effort,” he said of ...

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The Chef of the New Le Garage in Hampden Does a Pop-Up Dinner

Source: Baltimore Magazine - In Good Taste

Now’s your chance to get a sneak peek of the culinary style of chef Sarah Acconcia, who will be heading the kitchen at the new Le Garage Beer Bar & Frites in Hampden. A special dinner will be held at Maggie’s Farm in Lauraville at 6 p.m. on Sunday, February 23.

Sarah, a former sous chef at Maggie’s Farm, will team up with chef Andrew Weinzirl to present a menu for the dinner that is being billed as an Anti-Valentine’s Day event. It is the second in a monthly pop-up series.
 

The menu includes salt cod brandade, French onion soup, ...

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Baltimore Restaurant Week Starts Sunday

Source: Baltimore Magazine - In Good Taste

The good eating just doesn’t stop this month. Now, it’s time for Baltimore Restaurant Week, which starts Sunday and runs through Feb. 23.

There are more than 100 participating restaurants offering three-course, fixed-price menus for $30 or $20, not including tax and gratuity. Some places are also serving two-course lunch or brunch menus for $15.

Newcomers like Ozra, Dooby’s, and French Kitchen at Lord Baltimore Hotel (the fabulous five-beet salad, pictured, is on the menu) have joined the annual promotion as well as favorites like Cinghiale, Kali’s Court, and B&O American Brasserie.

Reservations are encouraged, especially at some ...

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Musings from the Internet

Source: Baltimore Magazine - In Good Taste

Mother Nature can’t cancel Valentine’s Day in Baltimore. Here are some of the offerings going on around town.

From Twitter:



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A Creative Force

Source: Baltimore Magazine Food & Dining

The Charmery takes the chill out of winter with ice cream and hot chocolate.

Baltimore magazine

That whacky David Alima, co-owner of The Charmery (801 W. 36th St., 410-814-0493) with his wife Laura, just can’t stop coming up with ideas.

“The beautiful thing about ice cream is that it’s a blank palette,” he says. “I constantly think about what flavors to do.”

He’s had fun with creations like Chinese Food and a Movie (a buttered-popcorn base with chocolate-covered fortune-cookie pieces) to celebrate a Jewish tradition at Christmastime and “Crunch” Davis (a sweet-cream base with orange-and-black sprinkles and candy-bar bits) in honor of the O’s Chris Davis.

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