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Towson & Surrounds - Casual Dining?

  • d

Grew up in Balmer, been living in Atlanta (where great food abounds from mid-town to the northern 'burbs)just moved back to the Towson area. Having a hard time finding casual "neighborhood" fare that serves for a convenient weeknight out. Seems like the old haunts have tanked and new ones are weak. Specifically, Italian/Burgers/BBQ/Mex also any good breakfast spots. Help.

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  1. There are two places around there. One is Orchard Market Cafe, off of Joppa Road. Its none of the cuisines you describe--it's Persian. But if youve got some adventurous friends it is really good. Also, up north, I think in Timonium?, theres a place called JJs Cafe that is great. I never go there because it's so far up north, but they do wonderfully fresh American, great crabcakes, very friendly. I can't remember but it may be a BYOB.
    And speaking as a new convert: Andy Nelson's Barbeque in Cockeysville! Its not a night out (more like a pig out!), very informal, but its the best bbq your going to find around here!

    2 Replies
    1. re: peckish

      I agree on Orchard Market Cafe. Its never crowded..staff is professional but not overbearing.
      Food is unique ..fresh.. abundant. Prices are average.
      BYOB. Whodathunk Persian Food copuld be so good?

      1. re: peckish

        I agree on Orchard Market Cafe. Its never crowded..staff is professional but not overbearing.
        Food is unique ..fresh.. abundant. Prices are average.
        BYOB. Whodathunk Persian Food copuld be so good?

      2. For BBQ, try Andy Nelson's up on York Rd, about a mile and a half north of Warren Rd on the right. If you pass Valley View Farms (another bright spot for all your gardening needs), you have overshot Andy Nelson's by a quarter mile.

        Andy Sr. was on the Baltimore Colts championship team of '58 and serves up some really good 'Q.

        1. For Mexican, try El Salto in Parkville by Perring Parkway. It is cheap and good - located in a converted fast food restaurant. Haven't been to this location (off of Joppa Road?) for awhile, but I go to the original in Brooklyn Park frequently.

          For cheap casual Italian, you may want to check out Fazzini's in Cockeysville in the 2nd shopping center on Cranbrook road. Some on this board have some strong feelings against this place, but I've always really enjoyed it.

          BBQ - Andy Nelson's (period)

          2 Replies
          1. re: SlipperyR

            I can second El Salto. Enormous menu -- almost to the point of confusion. Excellent and friendly service. Cheap, too.

            1. re: SlipperyR

              I'm new to the board, so I don't know about the brouhaha surrounding Fazzini's, but I also have enjoyed everything I've had there. It does lack ambience, but it's cheap, and satisfying, and they have large portions. Their fra diavolo's are good (maybe not as spicy as some would like), and so are their calzones. They make their own pasta and sauces, which you can even buy to take home. I think they're a bargain.

            2. Please try Johnny Dee's Lounge at 1706 Joan Ave (behind the 7-11 on Loch Raven Blvd - between Taylor Ave and Joppa Rd). Phone number is: 665-7000.
              We've been regulars for over 20 years. They have
              great burgers, hot and cold sandwiches (shrimp salad is their specialty), soups, several Italian dishes, seafood platters and chile. The prices are very reasonable. Most dishes are under $10. They have a full bar and are open 7 days a week. (Casual)

              1. Please try Johnny Dee's Lounge at 1706 Joan Ave just off Loch Raven Blvd (between Taylor Ave and Joppa Rd). Phone number is: 665-7000.
                We've been regulars for over 20 years. They have
                great burgers, hot and cold sandwiches (shrimp salad is their specialty), soups, several Italian dishes, seafood platters and chile. The prices are very reasonable. Most dishes are under $10. They have a full bar and are open 7 days a week.