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What's in Baltimore, that you wish was in DC?

Aka, reasons for a quick road trip.

I can't imagine Balitmoreans thinking the opposite thought though, but if they do please enlighten us....

Thanks in advance,

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  1. Brewer's Art
    Altman's Deli

    1. Pit beef

      Faidley's raw bar. I can get great oysters in DC, and there are some nice raw bars with happy hours, but nothing beats the experience of standing elbow to elbow with fellow slurpers in Lexington Market while eating and drinking.

      I have never had lake trout or a chicken box, but I don't think you can find those in DC (well, maybe in some of the Chinese/sub/chicken with mambo sauce places, but I'm not sure.)

      1. > I can't imagine Balitmoreans thinking the opposite thought though, but if they do please enlighten us....

        Baltimore is greatly lacking in French bistros compared to DC.

        1. You asked for enlightenment, so here you go:

          --Was at Eden Center yesterday, and I can say that we really don't really have much in the way of Vietnamese food here, and not one banh mi place;

          --Also, more and varied Chinese offerings in metro area, although Baltimore-metro area definitely claims Grace Garden;

          --I haven't been in years, but I thought Sushi Taro was way better than anything on this end of I-95;

          --And, you have way more Ethiopian options. For some reason, even Dukem here is not as good as their parent restaurant on U St.

          But, that's really about it.

          6 Replies
          1. re: baltoellen

            Baltimore needs DC's dim sum and Peruvian-style pollo joints. DC needs Baltimore's Greektown standouts.

            1. re: chowsearch

              Baltimore isn't lacking in Peruvian-style pollo joints. Chicken Rico in Highlandtown is one very good example.

              1. re: Hal Laurent

                Agree--we do have one of each that are ok, but just ok. I like Chicken Rico, but mostly because we don't have better. It isn't as good as even the poorer-performing DC pollo places, and it, the one on Broadway and Rinconcito Peruano (not a pollo place per se) all have a high dwell time--their turnover is lower than the DC places, so the birds sit. And we do have Asian Court in EC, but it's notches below even the maligned DC dim sum places like Good Fortune in Wheaton, the closest one. Asian Court's been crowded weekends, maybe other operators will note. And there's a new pollo place under construction last checked at 175 and Rt. 1 in Jessup. (Hope someone sends up a flare when that opens.)
                MD Pollo Smackdown thread--a dozen places around the DC/MD beltway

                1. re: Hal Laurent

                  Hurrah for Chicken Rico, it is as good as any DC-area Peruvian chicken joint.

              2. Pit beef. Lake Trout. Funky chicken places like one in the back corner of Lex mkt.

                Specifically some place like Snyder's Willow Grove.

                2 Replies
                1. re: Dennis S

                  I bet DC'ers wish they had Greek restaurants as good as Samos!!!

                  1. re: lrebetsky0423

                    I should attempt a visit at Samos. There is a place here in Reston that my brother, who is very familiar with Crete, signs off as being the real deal. I love it, but don't have the direct familiarity.

                2. "What's in Baltimore, that you wish was in DC?"

                  A cold beer for less than $6?

                  1. A top-notch kosher bakery like Goldman’s, Pariser’s or Sion’s
                    Suburban Almond Smash & Golden Ginger Ale
                    A hometown candy shop like Rheb’s or Wockenfus
                    Polock Johnny’s
                    High quality sausage shop like Binkert’s or Ostrowski’s

                    1 Reply
                    1. Woodberry Kitchen
                      Brewer's Art
                      Nacho Mama's
                      Miss Shirley's
                      Paper Moon
                      Pit Beef

                      1. JFX farmers market
                        Blue Moon brunch (which I could eat 24 hrs a day)
                        Holy Frijoles

                        1. 1. an excellent Baltimore style crab house that is consistant and fair in delivery of quality crabs at a reasonable price
                          2. a good Maryland crab cake
                          3. good Jewish style deli

                          1. The afore-mentioned Faidley's rawbar and pit beef stands. A decent hotdog (Polock Johnny's). A decent breakfast and a diner that doesn't cost an arm and a leg. Good barbecue. An affordable place to get drunk and listen to good live music. These are all things abundant in Baltimore that you can't find anymore in DC and the 'burbs.

                            1. > I can't imagine Balitmoreans thinking the opposite thought though, but if they do please enlighten us....

                              Baltimore lacks a truly elegant Indian restaurant like the Bombay Club. Sure we have great Indian food, but no place worthy of going to celebrate something special.

                              4 Replies
                              1. re: stephanieg

                                > Baltimore lacks a truly elegant Indian restaurant like the Bombay Club.

                                While maybe not as much so as the Bombay Club, the Ambassador Dining Room is pretty elegant.

                                1. re: Hal Laurent

                                  don't get me wrong... I love the Ambassador, but it is not in the same class as the Bombay Club, with its pianist, solid wine list, etc.

                                  1. re: stephanieg

                                    As the Bombay Club? Are we talking about the same Bombay Club???

                                    1. re: Jonny Pops

                                      We're talking about the Bombay Club on Connecticut Avenue in DC. What Bombay Club are you talking about?

                              2. Very interesting thread. What I like in DC that's not in Baltimore is lots of good ethnic cuisine--Chines, Hispanic, Indian. Also interesting bistros like Central and Oyamel and Jaleo.

                                Judging from this board DC folks are less happy wiyh their chow than Baltimoreans. I cannot explain that, but the quality and variety of food in DC is a whole lot better than it is here.

                                5 Replies
                                1. re: tartuffe

                                  native baltimorean living outside dc begs to differ. Baltimore chow at this point cant hold a candle to dc. In Mont Co alone there are numerous ethinic restaurants serving authentic Chinese, Ethiopian, Korean, Vietnamese, Thai, Salvadorean. Peruvean, Chilean, as well as manhy exmples of fine dining restaurants. And this occurs in numerous locations such as Wheaton, Rockville, Bethesda, and SilverSpring, The same can be said for Northern Virginia with Tysons Corner. Alexandria Arlington and Fairfax. And we haven't even mentioned DC and it;s neighborhoods such as Penns Quarter, U street, Georgetown. Dupont Circle. foggy bottom, cleveland park and downtown. Plus there are numerous examples of fine dining and nationally and internationally recognized chefs who are movers and shakers in the food industry, I think DC is at this point is in the top 6 culinary regions in the country with NY, Chicago, LA , south Florida and NOLA. No disrespect to Baltimore...I still love Faidleys for oysters, crab cakes and it is hard to pass up an Attmans corned beef sandwich and a coddie. The bakeries are great on Reisterstown road. I used to crave Berger Cookies but they have them in the markets down here now. I think my Baltimore chow friends who constantly want me to turn them on to different places down here will agree me with me

                                  1. re: dining with doc

                                    No question there's a lot of great ethnic foods in the DC area (mostly well outside of DC proper) and a lot of exciting high-end dining venues. It's the basic and affordable things that have all but disappeared inside the beltway. There's virtually no place serving alcohol that doesn't charge strip-club prices for a beer or a well drink and breakfast at the Metro Diner in Arlington can cost you 25 bucks.

                                    1. re: dining with doc

                                      On a tangent... You mentioned Chilean? What restaurant are you talking about? I studied abroad in Santiago and besided Julia's (which has decent empanadas, don't get me wrong, but just isn't the same!) I haven't had much luck... Any help is appreciated!

                                      1. re: dining with doc

                                        I'm sorry, but this simply isn't true. There is plenty of diversity around DC but to be honest a real blandness still plagues the place. And I really could not put it even in the Top 10 Nationwide for Food. NYC, LA, Bay Area, Chicago, New Orleans, Philadelphia, Seattle, South Florida, Boston, CA Wine Country and even Las Vegas come ahead of DC for food in my book. The biggest problem with DC food - which is not a problem in Baltimore by the way - is the biggest problem of the city itself: it does not have a culture of its own, aside from political corruption and greed. Everything is from somewhere else and nothing is organic to the place. Well, maybe Ben's and Florida Ave Grill are, but that's about it.

                                        1. re: Jonny Pops

                                          no, you were right, nothing is organic to DC, I suppose one could argue Alexandria and G'town (were) real places, DC itself was always a concept.

                                          still I think I'd put it ahead of LV by a bit.

                                          the first 7 cities on your list have great grungy food options, we have too few.

                                    2. Real Cask Conditioned ale at Olivers.

                                      1. The farmer's market underneath the expressway. good produce, some good prepared foods, good prices, no attitude.

                                        1. Really good dive bars in D.C. Flip the question around and it would be 2 amys in Balto.

                                          6 Replies
                                          1. re: 180hearted

                                            DC does need more decent dive bars where a Boilermaker at lunch doesn't raise eybrows. and old-school red-sauce Italian food that was considered exotic in 1952 while we're at it.

                                            1. re: hill food

                                              I live in Baltimore, not DC, but when I visit DC it seems like there is a serious lack of inexpensive blue-collar (or more properly, mixed-class) breakfast joints.

                                              1. re: Hal Laurent

                                                amen Hal. choices between a nice dinner and fast food are few and far apart.

                                                I love Asian, burgers and Mexican/Central American but we don;t have many casual 12 dollar an entree places outside of those categories.

                                                1. re: Hal Laurent

                                                  Look at the differance in the cities, Baltimore is Blue Collar and D.C. is not. There are plenty if inexpensive breakfast joints in D.C.. Look around a little. In D.C. people want cutting edge food and in Baltimore people want hotdogs from the hotdog cart. Hell they are so close, why put anything in the other city. Just take a drive.

                                                  1. re: Chef Tony

                                                    they are 2 very different places founded for very different reasons and circumstances, yet...

                                                    we're not all desk jockeys in DC and god knows Baltimore's industrial age is waning.

                                                    I just request some parity on all fronts. although I also demand city/regional specific things. So I'm conflicted.

                                                    1. re: hill food

                                                      I know what you mean, but I definitely like the regional/city differences. Especially when we are so close together I value those differences (and I've been surprised over my ten years in the DC area about the differences that do exist).

                                                      I end up in the North Country enough that I really look forward, and I have huge debates with myself about where to go THIS time. Pit beef, Lex market, find a lake trout place, something like Snyder's - and the list goes on.

                                            2. chiapparelli's. just give us the salad.