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Corner - Hampden

I went there a couple weeks ago, and had a nice dinner.
I had two starters that were on special that day- softshell crab on fiddlehead ferns, and the housemade boudin noir on garlic mash. The softshell was delicious, pan fried without batter. The blood sausage was really wonderful- very creamy texture.
For my main, I had the Veal Orloff- a beautiful cut of meat.
I'm excited they are planning to start an exotic meat club here. On special the same day I was there was a kangaroo tenderloin.

Kimko Seafood- Korean style sashimi in Ellicott City, MD

It used to be Bethany Seafood. I think they changed their name in the past year or so.

Kimko Seafood- Korean style sashimi in Ellicott City, MD

I went to Kimko Seafood in Ellicott City, MD this past weekend with some friends, and we enjoyed a massive meal of Korean style sashimi.
I was told by my Korean friends that authentic Korean sashimi is different from Japanese style. They prefer more "chewy" pieces of fish- the most popular is halibut. Also, in addition to using soy sauce & wasabi, Korean diners like to use the kochujang, red chile pepper paste to dip fish in.
Kimko offers really fresh items- several of which I had never had before. This included lobster, sea cucumber, abalone, & sea squirt. We were told that Kimko also has live octopus some nights of the week- alas- they were out this weekend. These items are stored alive in tanks on site, and are only prepped when ordered.
The lobster sashimi is really amazing- we were served the tail split open and meat cut into bite size pieces and topped with some roe. The meat was sweet but had a much different texture raw than cooked. It was delicious. The rest of the lobster is used for an amazing spicy soup with fish for the end of the meal.
I also liked the sea cucumber sashimi- briny like an oyster with the texture of raw octopus. I was less a fan of the sea squirt which had a bitter note. I also enjoyed the raw abalone.
In addition to the sashimi, we had nearly 20 different plates of bonchon with the meal. This included fish in various preps (fried, grilled, braised, raw), clams, a seafood pancake, grilled chicken gizzards, roe in rice, seaweed soup, potato salad, and edamame.
It is helpful to go the Kimko with someone who speaks Korean, but most of their menu is translated except for the live items. For the longest time, I was thinking this kind of meal would only be available in NY or Annandale, VA, but it's pretty awesome that it's so close to Baltimore.

Silk Road Bistro Chohyona- Uzbek Cuisine in Pikesville, MD

Went to a real find last weekend. An Uzbek restaurant in Pikesville called Silk Road Choyhona Bistro. It was recommended by some folks I met, one who was from Uzbekistan.
I've had Uzbek food in Brooklyn a few years ago, and armed with some little knowledge of the cuisine, this meal turned out better than the NY experience.
The place is BYOB. We started with a pitcher of their housemade fruit drink- kind of like a less sweet kool-aid with pear halves floating in it.
We started with a sampling of Uzbek "salads": Smak- tomato, croutons, cheese & mayo; suzma with radish- a sour yogurt with dill & cucumbers; Markovcha, a Korean influenced shredded carrot salad with garlic, vinegar, dill; and fried eggplant served cold folded with garlic & tomato.
We had the Uzbek Tandoori Nan bread which is not flat like Indian naan, rather it is like a boule with the middle collapsed. It's very dense.
The Pilav is like "pilaf"- a rice dish with carrots and lamb.
We ordered several kinds of kebab- including beef lulya, lamb, lamb rib (which is on a bone), and liver. My favorite was the lamb rib- very juicy and tender. They serve the meats with a spicy sauce, pickled onions, and pomengranate juice.
For dessert, I tried the baklava, which unlike it's Mediterranean counterpart, is not wet & syrupy- it's more like a dry flaky pastry. I also had the "chocolate ball" (not on the menu) which is like a dense cake doughnut hole drizzled with chocolate sauce.
it came to about $16/person for 8 people

607 Reisterstown Road
Baltimore, MD

Grace Garden - Chinese in Odenton

Mei actually recommeded I try Chef's General Tso's Chicken a few months ago- it was really great.

Dinner for 7 this Saturday night in Baltimore - B&O closed that night

Bluegrass Tavern in Federal Hill has a nightly foie gras prep that's usually pretty good, and they have a nice beer, wine, and bourbon selection.

Blue Grass - Federal Hill

I talked with chef Patrick a few weeks ago. They are planning on changing up the menu weekly based on sourcing and season. My favorite tacos have been the pork cheek and tongue and beef heart combos.
I would recommend his fried chicken- it's an airline cut- the chicken is deboned, the dark meat is wrapped around the white meat and its fried so that the skin is crispy- no batter. It's served sliced, and the meat is so juicy and delicious.
His charcuterie plates are good, and he's trying to make more of his own pates and cured meats in-house. I would recommend the bacon jam.
He mentioned that he's interested in more nose to tail fare. Had an amazing venison heart tartare there a few weeks ago.

Bachelorette dinner recs in Inner Harbor/Fells Point/Canton area?

B&O Brasserie is a great place for drinks and food as well

Grace Garden - Chinese in Odenton

Stopped into Grace Garden this weekend, and it looks like Chef Li's updated his menu with several new items. He added the Phoenix Purse as a preorder item. If you've been to special dinners there, it's a dish where he makes a dumpling with a skin of egg white filled with chicken and vegetables.
He's added a few new seafood items including conch, 7 preps on whole fish, and something called Cantonese Sea treasures, shrimp, scallop & sharks fin stuffed in cucumber.
I ordered the sichian dan dan noodles, noodles with sesame sauce served warm with sichuan spiced pork.
The new menu is up on the website.

Grace Garden
1690 Annapolis Rd, Odenton, MD

Full service butcher in Baltimore?

Not sure about in Baltimore itself, but Hemp's Meats near Frederick is amazing, and they source among the local farms.
My friend ordered 20 lbs of marrow bones cut longitudinal from them recently.
3740 Jefferson Pike
Jefferson, Maryland 21755
(301) 473-5700

Grace Garden - Good news?

Great news- I spoke with them today- Grace Garden is going to reopen tomorrow!

A find equal to Grace Garden?

Warthog, when I ate there, we talked with the manager and owner, and there are actually a group of chefs from China cooking there. They are all from Hunan from my understanding, and the manager is from Maryland. His family runs Ding How in Baltimore and he used to manage a Chinese place in Mays Chapel.

Spaghetti pizza

Joe Squared has a spaghetti and meatball pizza.


i went a week ago- it's awful. the place used to be the terrible Key Pit stop, and i think it's the exact same place under a disguise of a new place. one of the guys at the place was even wearing his old key pit stop shirt.
i got the ribs with a side of collards and beans. first off- the ribs were clearly parboiled- no evidence of any smoking at all. they were way too soft. . .
i sensed that my beans were also probably canned as well.

one reason i dislike Key Pit Stop was that their pit beef was clearly reheated beef sitting in the fridge. they used to do this out in the open kitchen area- it looks like now they hide their food prep in the back.

stay away- for better bbq- go to Rub in Federal Hill, and heck just go to Andy Nelson's.

Miss Saigon Pho, Glen Burnie

I would second crackers recommendation- while Mekong works out its service and shortage issues, Miss Saigon is still my preferred place for pho- fast, down and dirty. Also, they have tripe in their special pho, which I hear Mekong lacks.

Best cupcakes in Baltimore?

Rose's/Soup's On in Hampden makes some amazing homemade cupcakes. The flavors vary, but I recall an amazing Tres Leches cupcake with Dulce de Leche icing that was amazing.
They may make cupcakes for a party special order. .

Hodge's RIP, Akosombo still hanging in

I second the rec for Akosombo- went there sat evening- loved the fufu with spicy soup and the whole fish.
I also tried the peanut soup with goat meat.
The place is a dive for sure- no doubt it would be a little daunting to some eaters, but I actually felt welcome by the staff and the cab drivers watching the maryland-nc game.

pics here:

Don Panchito's Mexican & Salvadoran Grill

I've been to Don Panchito's twice with my folks- it's really good.

I would recommend the pupusa as well as the chicken tamale- the tamale is light and fluffy.
We've also had the Guisado De Puerco, a pork stew with onions, peppers served with rice, the Don Panchito Shrimp, a spicy tomato based dish with shelled shrimp, Bistec Encebollado, a beef stew, the lengua tacos, and the cassava with chicharrons. Everything felt like homemade dishes.

oh, and the refried beans are great- clearly made with lard- yum

pics here:

Baba's Mediterranean Kitchen on Fort Ave. in Baltimore

I live a block from Baba's- it was just okay. . .
Had the falafel in a pita- the falafel was bland and not that hot. I had to add my own hot sauce at home. I have had better falafel from food trucks in Philly. They should just fry these made to order instead of using ones sitting in the cooling basket above the fryer.
Also had the quinoa tabouleh salad- again- just ok.
Decor is nice, food could be better for the price.

Where to find authentic Pit Beef?

The Canopy locations use freshly slice pieces of beef from pieces cooking on the "pit". I've never seen them use "pressed beef" like Arby's.
The Med rare and rare beef is pretty incredible.
Also, they double fry their fries Belgian style, so they only get soggy if they've sat in a bag.

Where to find authentic Pit Beef?

I would recommend Canopy Pit Beef- better beef than Chaps.
There are locations in Ellicott City, Glen Burnie, and Catonsville.
There fries are better than Chaps as well- not soggy.

Milkshakes around Bmore

In Hampden, the gift shop Hometown Girl, has a nice soda fountain with nice thick milkshakes made to order.
Ye Old Malt Shop's blender is not very strong, so their shakes are on the thin side.

Fresh Thai Mangosteens in B'more & DC

This was covered some in the Thai Festival in Silver Spring post, but there are only 5 days left (until April 19th) to try Thai Mangosteens in the area for Thai Restaurant week.
The fruit is amazing, and free with your meal at the participating restaurants!
I read that it will be unlikely anyone can actually buy Thai Mangosteens here in the US in the near future. The fresh one's you can get in NY and LA are supposedly from Puerto Rico and go for $10 each.
It's also a rare opportunity to try other fruits imported from Thailand including Rambutans and Longans.

Details and participating restaurants:

Bmore: El Taquito vs. Tortilleria

At Tortilleria Sinaloa, I think their better tacos are the lengua and chorizo. They sometimes have goat and cabeza. I also enjoy their menudo soup- it goes great with their fresh corn tortillas.