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DC Hound Needs Help in B'more - Specific Criteria

Husband and I will be celebrating our birthdays in Baltimore on Saturday, Dec. 8. Live in Northern VA and have only ever been to the Inner Harbour (gasp), so we're B'more restaurant novices, but eager to make the most of our trip with Chowhound rec's (as always).

We'll be staying at Henderson's Wharf in Fell's Point. Looking for:

- a special occassion restaurant
- within a 15 minute walk from Fell's Point
- that takes reservations
- is romantic, i.e., relatively cozy
- isn't high end (just got back from two-weeks in Italy and are watching our pennies)

Not interested in traditional fine dining, looking for great atmosphere, memorable food, and someplace we can linger. From researching the board I've come up with the following possibilities. Please weigh in! Am completely open to other suggestions.

- Henningers
- The Brewer's Art
- Peters Inn
- The Wine Market
- b Bistro
- Petit Louis

P.S. Bars that we shouldn't miss to and from dinner?

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  1. For great atmosphere & food, I'd hit Pazo (1425 Aliceanna St in FP). Red Star is a great bar not to miss (906 S Wolfe St, in FP). Head to Tugboat Ann's (529 S. Bond St in FP) when you get tired of the beautiful people.

    10 Replies
    1. re: cpfeifer

      cpfeifer: the photos on the Pazo website look like a large open dining room which I assumed meant it was loud and noisy. Is that not the case? Many thanks for the bar rec's.

      1. re: Meg

        Pazo is loud and noisy. Henninger's meets all of your criteria except the reservations part. If you can let that requirement go, the choice is a no-brainer.

          1. re: JonParker

            Henningers was actually my first choice from what I'd read. Though any idea what time we'd have to get there to get a table for two around 7ish? And more importantly, do they have a bar that's worth waiting at?

            1. re: Meg

              The bar is my favorite in town, very warm and cozy, I actually eat at the bar often!
              www.henningerstavern.com

              1. re: hon

                I'm confused. From what I read I thought Henninger's had a separate restaurant and bar. But the website looks like it's just a bar (tavern) and says it only has 12 tables. Is that in the bar only, or is that the whole restaurant? TIA

                1. re: Meg

                  The bar is one on side and the restaurant is on the other side. Yes, it is a small dining room but worth checking out!!

            2. re: JonParker

              I agree that Henninger's is a "no-brainer' given your criteria!

          2. re: cpfeifer

            Tugboat Ann's has been gone for a few years now.

            1. re: hon

              My bad, I was at the Wharf Rat.

          3. If you're looking for romantic/cozy, I'd skip Petit Louis. The tables are crammed so tight that you can reach over and taste your neighbor's dinner. It's also noisy and pretty casual. I like Brewer's Art and The Wine Market. Wasn't thrilled with "b"'s food that last time we were there.

            1. What about the Black Olive? It is in Fell's Point.

              1 Reply
              1. re: smt

                It is indeed, and in my experience the food is good, but there's nothing romantic about getting pissed off at the inattentive service.

              2. I vote for the Brewer's Art or Peter's Inn. I think both of them have good points. Brewer's Art *might* be a little more romantic, although I got engaged at Peter's. Too bad my marriage didn't last as long as this restuarant has :). Both have very good food. Peter's is the type of place that has velvet Elvis art, if you're into that type of thing. Plus, the specials include anything from meat lover's entrees to vegan entrees. Brewers is def. more 'hoity toity'.

                1. I should add that Henninger's and Peter's Inn are the only two places on your list that are even close to Fell's Point.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: JonParker

                    I love both Henninger's and Peter's (Peter's is probably my fave in Baltimore)...but for a special occasion kind of place that you can walk to in FP you might also consider Timothy Dean's bistro. It's not outrageously expensive and yet it's a little more "upscale" than the other 2...and I think the food is really good.
                    http://www.tdbistro.com/

                    1. re: sistereurope

                      I really liked the looks of TD's Bistro online, but want something a bit less expensive. Is Brewer's Art a long walk or quick cab ride away from FP? I love their beer selection. Though jwiv's input below about the food concerns me. Also, there are no photos of the inside of Peter's Inn online. How's the ambiance?

                      1. re: Meg

                        Brewer's Art is a very long walk from Fell's Point. All the way to the harbor and then up Charles St. about 10-15 blocks? It would be a pretty short cab ride. If you're into beer it's a great place. You can make reservations for the fancy restaurant part, which is probably more expensive than you're looking for. Otherwise you can try to get a table or sit at the bar upstairs (or downstairs if you don't mind the smoke). I went just last Saturday night, we got there around 7pm and got two seats at the bar in the corner right away, which was actually quite cozy.

                        Peter's Inn has quite a unique ambiance. It's definitely a bar. When you walk in for the first time you'll probably think you're in the wrong place. But there are tables next to the bar and in a little back room. I think they're non-smoking now though. Also the people who work there are very nice.