I don't make it out to the Thirsty Dog Pub too much anymore - indeed, they've changed their name to The Dog Pub, and I barely noticed - but still would place their Hearts of Palm salad among the best dishes that the city of Baltimore offers. Alongside it is the Rosemary Garlic Fries at Brewer's Art, and the hriby dip at Ze Mean Bean Cafe. But I'm ready to add a couple more:]
Crab Hash at Waterfront Hotel: I had this again yesterday, and it's just as good as the other two times I've had. A huge skillet of crab meat, potatoes, grilled vegetables, a couple of poached eggs, seasoned with Old Bay. It is superb. The Waterfront Hotel now is officially one of the best brunches in Baltimore, and will be much, much better once the smoking ban goes into effect on Jan. 1. Be careful, though - the all-you-can-drink mimosas and blood mary's stop at 3pm. After that, they become $5.50/each. I got there at 2:48 yesterday and ran up quite a bill without realizing it. That being said, they were the best mimosas I've ever had. (And probably the first mimosas, if you want to know the truth.)
Mushroom Reuben at Joe Squared: It's what I get every time I go there now. I think that in my decade of vegetarianism, there are just a couple of things that I miss: jerky and reubens. Joe has fixed the latter, though, with a sandwich that makes my mouth water. It's probably really simple - some cheese, some grilled mushrooms, saurkraut, that reuben sauce - but it's really good.
So, there you go, the five great dishes in Baltimore:
1. Hearts Afire at The Dog Pub
2. Rosemary Garlic Fries at Brewer's Art
3. Hriby Dip at Ze Mean Bean
4. Crab Hash at Waterfront Hotel
5. Mushroom Reuben at Joe Squared
And one caveat for each (I've ordered them all enough to know...):
1. Sometimes the palm is too crunchy, not ripe enough. Ask for more cheesesticks if this is the case.
2. Sometimes they can overcook it. The fries should be soft, not crunchy.
3. They've started using new crunchy toasty bread instead of the pita. Ask for the pita. The new crunchy bread isn't working.
4. Just skip the toast. You won't be able to eat it, anyway.
5. Sometimes the bread can be too greasy. You could ask them to go light on the butter.
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