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Catering in B-more/Columbia??

Thanks for the rec, we'll look into them. We just had a little baby and have been thinking about moving back to B-more for the family factor too. but the food, and the schools, and the safety... anyhoo: lots and lots of lovely food out here. The hot sushi place now is Bamboo Sushi (higher end, sustainable). many, many places for pacific northwest, locavore cuisine: Le Pigeon's chef just got nominated as the James Beard Rising Star, beaker & flask is great for good food and inventive cocktails, pok pok gets lots of press for good thai (chef was also named on James Beard finalists). let me know if you have other, more specific questions! perhaps it won't be raining by June...

Catering in B-more/Columbia??

cater as in food and staff - my parents would be grumpy if I asked them to clean up!

Catering in B-more/Columbia??

I'm a ex-B-more chowhound who fled to the green pastures of Portland, OR. I got married recently and will be having a reception back at my parents house in Columbia in May. I would like to find a caterer for about 50+ folks for an h'ordeuvres reception. Any one know any local restaurants that would cater? Or good caterers?? Have been gone for a bit, so rather out of the loop. Thanks for any advice, will happily repay w/ Portland recs if anyone ventures out here!

Catering in Columbia?

So, while I used to be a regular B-more chowhound, I've now moved out to Portland, OR (which is a lovely chow-y place, I must say). However, the rest of my family still lives in the greater Baltimore metropolitian area. And my sister is getting married in June. And I'm the matron-of-honor (what an awful title!). So, I'm in charge of her shower. Normally I would be happy to cook up some lovely brunch-y dishes, but due to work issues I will be flying in and out for the shower I am "hosting". Any suggestions for good (and not too expensive) caterers that would work for a brunch shower in Columbia for about 30-40 ladies? would be much obliged.

Dungeness crab PDX

thanks guys! we'll try the Chinese version at one of these places this weekend!
My parents visited last week from b'more and we steamed fresh crabs we bought at ABC.
ericlutzker, I completely agree - they were yummy, but only when we concentrated on realizing they were a completely different dish than blue crabs. We just did 'em straight up with drawn butter and some local wine. we completely underestimated how much meat we would get from each so had lots of leftovers, which we picked. Tried making crabcakes, like I always do with left over blue crabs - not successful at all. made some sushi rolls with the rest - much better.
still gotta say I prefer the blue, though

Jan 18, 2010
pagoda girl in Metro Portland

Dungeness crab PDX

So, we just moved to Portland from the blue crab nirvana that is Baltimore, MD. While there are many foodie pluses inherent in that trade-off, I am not yet convinced that trading blue crab hardshells for these new-fangled Dungeness crabs is one of them. Where should I go in Portland to try and dispel my doubts? Open to suggestions for both places to eat 'em and places to get 'em to cook (although then I would need advice on what to do with 'em - since I'm not entirely sure steaming 'em in beer and Old Bay is the way to go). thanks so much!

Dec 16, 2009
pagoda girl in Metro Portland

b-more 'hound venturing down to DC

This Sunday my parents are taking me out for a celebratory dinner, and would like to dine in DC. Being rather Baltimore-centric, I hardly ever venture down that way, but my sister lives down there. We're looking for something nice but not overly expensive. Sister has suggested: Cork, Majestic, Beck, Hook, and Founding Farmers. Thoughts on preferences amoung these? Other places to consider? Thanks!

Xmas eve dinner in Baltimore

Last year I posted with the same question - here's a link to the responses I got:
we ended up going to Aldo's and were pretty disappointed - in short not great food, bad service, not great wine, and very expensive.
This year we are going to be cooking a seafood feast as a family instead of going out.
although I haven't been there for dinner I think the Oregon Grill would be good - it's not usually my type of place, but I just was taken there for a holiday work event and the food was great, classic fare and the service was perfect - seems ideal for a holiday event (especially if someone else is paying!)

Baltimore Fish Market

Not actually in Baltimore, but in Columbia is Frank's seafood market It's in a complex where they sell wholesale to resturants. All the seafood I've gotten there has been quite good - esp the crab cakes

No Peas!!!!

I get some fresh dill from the folks who always have lovely, generous bunches of fresh herbs and boil them and then do dill/butter. Sometimes I throw in a little feta instead of butter. Or add some tomatoes as well and then toes it with some orzo. . . yum. I bought his tomatoes this week and was quite happy with them.

Local foodie destinations on a bike (motorcycle, that is!)

So, my new-ish +1 has a motorcycle, and the foodie road trip post (plus many recent conversations) got me thinking - where would be a great nearby place to head to on the bike and find great food/drinks - ideal place would be nestled in nice countryside, down some windy roads, but could be anything from a side of the road BBQ to a destination resturant (though it would have to be ok for me to not wear a dress - a little sandelous on the motorcycle!) We were thinking about Virginia wine country... other ideas?

Best sushi in Baltimore?

I used to love Chui's but had such a trrible experiance I will never, ever return!

Beef for the First Time

I recently fell off this very same bandwagon, and got some good suggestions (albeit for Baltimore):
I had been eating some fish and chichen before, but my first meat meal was a scrumptious filet minon perpared by my boyfriend (I agreed to try a steak (he's from Wyoming and used to work on a ranch) in exchange for him stopping smoking - a very good deal for me!!) I must say despite not eating red meat in over 16 years I had no tummy troubles, so I wouldn't stress yourself out too much. And I hope you enjoy the broadened menu choices as much as I do - as a foodie it's so great to actually go to a resturant and let myself consider all the options. Makes me kick myself for not having made the transition back sooner. . .

Chui's Sushi (Baltimore) - NOT going back!

Last night after a very late night in the OR I had to run by Whole Foods (out of espresso pods - clearly the start of a bad day) so I decided to treat myself to some take out sushi. I stopped by Chui's - which is my go to place for rolls. In fact, I go there quite often, usually bringing friends, and it's not like it's a cheap outing either. I ordered 2 rolls I've had before and coughed up $23. After running a few more errands I finally got home, quite famished, only to find that my sushi rolls looked like they were not my rolls - one had crab stick in it, and was not a full roll. Now I've had a lot of sushi from Chui's before and have never gotten crabstix (and would never order a roll that had crabstix in it because I think it's gross). My first thought was that they had given me someone else's leftovers. Yuck. So now it's almost 10pm, I'm starving and out $23, grr. So I call them and say, hey could you either credit me the money or could I bring the rolls back and get my order. The lady said no she couldn't just credit my order because the manager wasn't there, and she couldn't give me new sushi because no one was there to make rolls. And besides she was sure she'd given the right rolls, so I should just eat them. Now, I don't know about you but the idea of eating what might be someone else's leftover raw fish just isn't appietizing to me. When I said I was not happy with this option she said that the only way she would credit me was if I brought the rolls back to her. When I informed her that I was in my pajamas she said "well you can just put on a coat". Now I was not pleased and not really excitted about having shelled out a fair amount of money and not getting any dinner out of it, so I threw on my coat and drove over there (a 5 min drive). When I got there she (and the manager/owner - who, in fact, was there) proceded to tell me that I was wrong - they always put crab stix in their rolls when it says crab on the menu (which would be disappointing if it were true, but I've never noticed this before) so clearly I had the right rolls and it was my fault for "messing up" the rolls because they were jumbled from being in a take out container. No refund, no new rolls, nothing, just being berrated for messing up their rolls and having the audacity to expect that I would get what I ordered. Grrr. Let me just say I will NOT be going back.
So, to try to be constructive about it - any suggestions on where I should make my go to place now? I like fresh fish and creative (yeah I know they are non-tradiational) rolls, and would perfer it to be close to Patterson Park.

Where to take a newly fallen vegetarian - b'more

Thanks guys! Keep the recomendations coming!!

Where to take a newly fallen vegetarian - b'more

I just fell completely off the vegetarian wagon (although, truthfully, I ate fish for years) but have just recently rediscovered red meat (long story!), So, the question for the group is where should I go now to exploit this? Clearly, there are steak houses, but that seems a little obvious (besides probably being out of my price range!). Any suggestions for a resturant that really shines in their preparation of meat dishes? Particularly scrumptious dishes somewhere that I would have never looked at before? I'm open to anything from a great hamburger (haven't had one in 16 years) to beef tartare. . .

Tampa conference: help an out of town 'hound

I know it's irritating when visitors post questions you think are answered ad nauseum! (In B'more we get requests for crabs near the inner harbour all the time!) However, when I looked through before posting I couldn't really get a sense of if places recomended were anywhere near the conference center area (except those recommended to take clients (and sadly I don't have an expense account)). Any recs on places w/in a walk or short cab ride would be much appreciated. . .

Feb 27, 2008
pagoda girl in Florida

Tampa conference: help an out of town 'hound

Traveling from Baltimore to in Tampa in 2 weeks, and was hoping for some help: I'm here for a conference in downtown, no car - if you only had 2 days, where would you go for 1. very nice dinner (but not on an expense account!) and more importantly 2. for a "local find" dinner or lunch? Much obliged.

Feb 27, 2008
pagoda girl in Florida

Monday night dining in Baltimore?

I have friends coming in from out of town and my top three usual go to places (Peter's, Jack's, Iggies) are all closed on Mondays. I suggested Helmand, but they are going there later in the week with collegues. Does any one happen to have a "master list" of which resturants are open Monday nights? Any suggestions? Thanks

Espresso pods - Baltimore

indeed, that is where I usually order them from, but it irks me to pay them $10 for shipping, and (probably more importantly) I miscalculated and thought I had a box left but turns out I am almost out, so if I order online there will be several mornings where I do not have espresso, and trust me, that will not be pretty.)

Espresso pods - Baltimore

I have an Espressione Cafe Retro, which takes those little bag pods that are not machine specific.

Espresso pods - Baltimore

Anyone know where I can buy pods for my espresso machine around Baltimore? I usually order 'em online by the shipping irks me. I know, I know, I should press it down and not use pods. . .

Christmas Eve Family Dinner in Baltimore

So, we decided on Aldo's, and sadly I must report that we were disappointed.
They had the feast of seven fishes and the regular menu.
two at the table, myself included, went the seven fishes route:
first course was mixed fried seafood with salt cod, calamari, etc. fine enough but not the best calamari I've had, a bit on the soggy side.
next was a cold seafood salad or a crab & lobster sheery-based soup. both of us got the soup, which was quite rich. perfectly smooth and decadent. The best course of the meal.
Next was a bronzini stuffed with crab meat (there was another choice but we both got the same thing, sorry). I sounded lovely but seemed to fall flat - a rather nondescript tomato sauce on top. The truffled-saffrom mashed potatoes were pretty darn good though.
Trio of deserts came next - I'm a big fan of bread pudding and this one was good and simple, and just the right size at the end of a meal. The biscotti was good, but dispite my trying valiantly no one was around for me to ask for coffee, or a liquour for dunking. Other bite of desert was chocolate coated cornflakes.
there was a complementary house-made creamed limoncello at the end, which was a nice touch, though it tasted a bit like an alcoholic creamscile.
The other two family members had: truffled lobster risotto (very rich, quite good) as an appitizer and veal saltimbocca. My mother had escargot w/ mushrooms in a puff pastry for an appitizer (also very, very good) and a veal dish for dinner. I don't eat veal, but they reported happiness with their entree choices.
However, the most unfortunate note of the evening was the wine service. Now I drink a fair amount of wine. I will not claim to be an expert, but I drink enough wine to have opinions and usually make an informed choice off a wine list. So the fromt of their wine leaflet says that they enjoy stocking small Italian variatals that are not well known. Now that sounds about perfect to me, I love exploring new wines! So I peruse the menu and when the waiter comes around I ask first if they have wine pairings with the seven fishes menu and am informed rather rudely that they do not because wine pairing really isn't necessary, it is all up to my own tastes. Hmmm? I know what wine I like, I know we all are supposed to have moved beyond red for beef, white for fish, but isn't that really one of the great things about wine? How much better the right combination of food and wine elevate both beyond what they were alone? But ok, they don't have wine pairings picked out, fine. So, I then say, well, you have this interesting section of lesser know Italian whites. We'd like to explore some of these, we tend to like X,Y, Z kind of characteristics in our wines, do you or your sommilier have any suggestions so we could try an Italian wine? And I get, well I gues you could jusy go with a Pinot Grigio. hmm. well, which pinot grigio do you recomend out of your selection - of the most expensive one of course. The bottle we ended up with was actually fine. When time came for the second bottle of the night I tried again: out of you wine list, I would normally order this bottle, however, I would like to explore your interesting selections, could you or your sommiler offer some suggestions that would be along those lines but something we haven't tried before? The waiter actually rolled his eyes at me! He did make a selection, left and found out it was out and returned with a different suggestion from the wine manager, which was better than the first bottle. Still, if you are going for a special occasion you expect it to be special. If I'm paying $100+ per person for food and wine, I expect my waiter to know something about the wine, if not, for them to at least get me the wine manager, and for heavens sakes not to roll their eyes at me when I am trying to pay $70 for a bottle of wine.
I suspect that next year we will cook ourselves, but I can say we will not be returning to Aldo's.

Christmas Eve Family Dinner in Baltimore

My family used to have a big traditional gathering Christmas Eve, but sadly, the family has dwindled. . . so for the last few years we've been trying to gather the remaining folks for a nice dinner out. In the past we've been to Terseiguel's. Now we generally love Terseiguel's and have gone for many a special occasion, but at Christmas it seemed rushed and we came away feeling disappointed. We also tried Aida last year (parents live in Columbia and are regulars there and I'm enough of a fan that it's my go-to recomendation when someone posts asking for a resturant in Columbia), but this year we want to try something new. I was thinking along the lines of Abercrombie, but sadly, that is still closed. Any ideas for someplace nice where the service will be lovely even on Christmas Eve, but that is not quite Charleston in price? Much obliged.

Business Dinner in Columbia

I'd consider Aida - an Italian family run place with a good wine selection and homemade Italian with some upscale entrees. It is hidden in a business park in Columbia, but seems like it would fit the bill

Elkridge Furnace Inn -VS- Kings Contrivance for small group business dinner?

Aida Bistro in Columbia might also work - family run but very nice Italian. It's fairly small, but 8-10 seems like something they'd be able to handle.

Baltimore Help

Mama's is definately still there, corner of O'Donnel & Linwood. but in my opinion you did better ending up at Henninger's (not that I don't like Mama's, just love Henninger's...)

late dinner near the 9:30 club?

Indeed it is, and that's where we ended up - at Etete, which is very close, good, and open until 3 am. Thanks

late dinner near the 9:30 club?

I know this topic was discussed a few months ago, but the show tonight (Iron & Wine, yeah!) is an early one so I'd like to get dinner after the show and wasn't sure what my options for dinner around 11pm would be, if any? (Up here in B'more precious few places are open late!) The previous posts suggested Bar Pilar, Ooohs & Aaahs, Ben's Chilli Bowl, and Duffy's. Will these places be open after the show? Any place else? Thanks!

Best New Midscale Restaurant in Bmore?

I would giv Jack's Bistro a try - it's new, has great food, and the folk there are really nice in my experiance. They only take reservations for larger parties, but it seems like you will have a bigger group, so could probably get a reservation. It's become my go-to place lately