The Dining Dish blog is Dara Bunjon's take on anything food, both national and in her hometown of Baltimore. Warning: this food blog can be harmful to your waistline.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Grand opening of &pizza: Free pizza all day


Mark your calendars to check out &pizza’s grand opening on Thursday, May 26th at their first Baltimore location, 1201 South Charles Street in Federal Hill – free pizza all day long for everyone.  The first five guests to request the shop’s signature ampersand tattoo will receive a complimentary one at the nearby Brightside Tattoo Shop and, get this….. free pizza for a year (one pizza per week for 52 weeks) once they receive the tattoo.

What a great opportunity to taste their pizza … an elongated version or the typical round pizza, think flatbread. Create your own or dive into one of their numerous signature pizzas.

Read all the details and watch the video at Examiner.com / Dining


Tuesday, May 17, 2016

This little piggy won't make it all the way home: Butchery demo and tasting

Open to the public, Stratford University and the American Culinary Federation –Greater Baltimore Chapter have gathered two experts in their chosen fields; Master Butcher Marc Pauvert and Eric Yeager CEC (Certified Executive Chef) who on Monday, May 23rd at 6 p.m. will present “Classic French Pig Butchery Demo and Tasting” at Stratford University.  Cost per person is a mere $50 and a rare opportunity to see the master butcher at work and taste Chef Yeager’s culinary creations from a properly butchered pig.


So why is this unique? On this night, under one roof, Marc Pauvert and Eric Yeager, experts in their chosen fields will be sharing their culinary expertise with food professionals and enthusiasts in an up-close and personal environment. 

Read the full story, details and watch the video at examiner.com  / dining

Sunday, May 15, 2016

What's new for spring at Bonefish Grill


It is always a treat to be asked back to Bonefish Grill, to taste and talk about their new menu offerings or special promotions. Not new to the menu, but always a treat, is the bang bang shrimp, stacked in a pyramid these spicy (not too spicy) shrimp have your mouth watering before you even unwrap the chopsticks. If you happen to be at a Bonefish Grill on any given Wednesday, enjoy the bang bang shrimp for just $6.

The Bonefish Grill’s spring menu is featuring simple preparations of these fresh wood-grilled fish as well as more creative offerings:

Read the full story and watch the slideshow at Examiner.com / dining


  

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

The Boathouse's Dockbar opening for al fresco drinking and dining

Come by boat (make a docking reservation), by foot, by bike, water taxi but come to one of the nicest al fresco, people watching, casual dining and drinking locales in Baltimore, the Dockbar. 

The menu is filled with fun foods for all pico de gallo and guac, Chesapeake Crab Dip, The Boathouse’s famous Mojo’s pimento cheese, wings and those are just starters.  Sandwiches, salads, raw  bar and let’s not forget the drinks; Crushes in multiple flavors, margaritas, draft  and can beers and let’s not forget the grape, by the glass or bottles of wine.  Be sure to check out the extensive taco bar.

As Annie sings in the Broadway show and movie, “the sun will come out!” soon, I hope.

The DockBar will have live music on Wednesday and Friday evenings from 6-9 pm and Saturday and Sunday afternoons from 4-7 pm. The DockBar will be open seven days a week weather permitting, beginning at 3:30 PM Monday - Friday and 11:00 AM Saturday & Sunday. Additionally, Happy Hour Specials include $5 Orange Crushes, half priced wines by the glass, and special beer and cocktail prices.



Dock Bar at the Boathouse – 2809 Boston Street, Batlimore, MD  410 773 9795  www.boathousecanton.com  Twitter & Instagram @boathousecanton  Facebook

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Taste of the Town at Baltimore County Public Library Towson branch


No secret password for this speakeasy, the Foundation for Baltimore County Public Library (BCPL) kicks off their 5th annual Taste of Towson with a roaring 20’s theme at the BPCL Towson branch at 320 York Road on Saturday, May 14th from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m.   Sample food and drinks from some of the Baltimore County’s finest restaurants and caterers, enjoy live jazz music and bid in a fun, eclectic silent auction, all for a great cause! Tickets are on sale now at $75 per person, and can be purchased at any BCPL branch, online at www.foundationforbcpl.org.

Participating local restaurants include BB's Cafe, Bill's Seafood, Cafe Troia, Charles Village Pub & Patio, Jake's New York Deli, Kathmandu Kitchen, La Cakerie, Kooper's North/Kooper's Jacksonville, McFaul's IronHorse Tavern, Nando's Peri Peri, Noodles & Company, Prigel Family Creamery, Truffle Butta Bistro and Wegmans Hunt Valley.

This year's event will be hosted by local authors, Gregory and Nicole Priebe, the "alcohologists" behind A History of Drinking, the cocktail blog that pairs random and often obscure historical events with appropriate cocktails. Active in the national and online cocktail communities since 2009, they have created custom cocktails for Hiram Walker, Crown Royal and many other brands. Gregory and Nicole will demo one of their favorite Maryland cocktails, and each guest/couple will receive a complimentary copy of their book Forgotten Maryland Cocktails: A History of Drinking in the Free State. The Priebes will be signing books at the event. There will also be signature cocktail for the event.


The Foundation for Baltimore County Public Library provides additional resources to enrich the Baltimore County Public Library’s commitment to empower the citizens of Baltimore County to explore, learn, create and connect. The Foundation funds important early childhood literacy programs like the Read Rover bookmobiles, Summer Reading Club and both Storyville early learning centers, as well as many other vital programs such BC Reads in Baltimore County. For more information, visit their website at www.foundationforbcpl.org.

Monday, May 09, 2016

Maryland Farmer's Markets opening for 2016 season

How local farmer’s markets have grown, the joy in the availability of farm fresh seasonal produce, flowers, breads, desserts and noshes makes attending a special outing.  For example, Pikesville’s  Farmer Market opened  this past Tuesday, May 3 at Pomona Square at 1700 Reisterstown Road with a record number of 20 participating vendors that span everything from cream of crab soup to falafels:

•Beads by Bettina - Handcrafted jewelry
•Cathy's Ginger Spices - Spices & ginger products, teas & lemonades
•Chiropractic Works - Free chiropractic health consultations
•Connect Hearing - Hearing professionals
•Debbie's Cuisine Catering - Cream of crab soup
•Great Shoals Winery*- Local hard cider and wine
•Hillside Meadow Farm - Produce, fruits & meats (all natural Black Angus beef cuts, all natural lamb cuts, pasture raised free range eggs)
•Just Ice Frozen Desserts - Freshly made Italian ice
•Keith Baker Cabinet Shop & Plants - Bedding plants, vegetable plants, hanging baskets, container gardens, mums and handmade wood items
•Kitchen Saver - Kitchen remodeling services
 •McCleaf's Orchard - Varieties of apples, apple cider, apple butter and other fruits
•The Mondel Broad - Homemade mondel bread & loaf cakes
•Msprity Enterprises, LLC - Vegan skin care & seated chair massages
•The Residence at Pomona Park* - Some of the largest apartments in Pikesville
•Simply Delicious Desserts* - Breads, pies, energy & power bars, cookies
•Susie's Southern Pound Cake - Homemade pound cakes
•Tovavi Falafel*- Vegan & kosher Falafel cooked and served in pita bread
•Washington DC Dills*- Pickles, kraut, beets, ferments
•Wholesome Nibbles, LLC* - Bliss balls: espresso chocolate, almond cocoa, apricot walnut, cranberry coconut
•Your Traveling Chef, LLC - Homemade food

*New venders for 2016 – Pikesville Farmer’s Market Open Tuesdays from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m through Oct 25th.

Find your local Maryland Farmer’s Market days and hours of operation  at the attached listing – 2016 Maryland Farmers Market Directory PDF.  Twitter @MDsBest



A utopia for locavores and foodies alike: Annapolis's Level Small Plates Lounge


A media invitation to enjoy all the new spring dishes and cocktails created by mixologist Josh Miller and Executive Chef John Brown at the highly praised Level in the heart of downtown Annapolis could not be turned down. 


Our evening kicked off with cocktails first, a chance to taste the new spring additions which are lighter and fruitier, a sign that summer isn’t too far away; Level Gimlet (Finlandia vodka, fresh lime, sugar cane, lime foam), Strawberry Phil (Bluecoat gin, strawberry, thyme, lemon, sugar cane, soda water) , Weekend at Bernie’s (Ron Zacapa rum, grilled pineapple, pressed lime, orgeat) or the Acai Smash ( Finlandia vodka, Cedilla, mint syrup, lemon).  Scratch made syrups and daily, fresh squeezed fruit juices are the gospel for the best cocktails according to Level’s libation master, Josh Miller.
Read the full story and watch the slideshow at Examiner.com / Dining

Sunday, May 08, 2016

Mother's Day - Food memories from a bygone era


Mother’s Day, what better time to reflect back on the woman who started me on my culinary journey with her pitch perfect cooking. Her cooking wasn’t fancy, although on occasion when lobsters were on sale we might get a crab imperial stuffed ½ lobster or a veal scaloppini.  My mother was the youngest of 9 children; her parents were immigrants from Europe, who for a short period, lived in London before coming to the United States at the turn of the 20th century. I tell you the United Kingdom waylay because of the foods served to me like Finnan and Haddie (smoked haddock) or kippers with sautéed onions with vinegar. Though I haven’t had Finnan and Haddie since I was a young girl, I still to this day order kippers at a local delicatessen.  

My mother ditched keeping Kosher when she married and moved into her own home. We weren’t very religious, although my mother maintained many Jewish traditions; the Friday night Shabbat dinner. All the aunties and uncles (and there were a lot, again, my mother one of nine and my father one of seven children) would clamber to sit at her table. Her roasted capon was legendary; the fish for her gefilte fish was hand chopped and flaky, and the chicken soup with light and fluffy matzo balls. In the early days, the butchers had unfertilized eggs she would get in a paper tray and cook them in the chicken soup.  

Read the full story at Examiner.com/Dining 

Wednesday, May 04, 2016

Greek and Korean food mashup - 1 day only - Brusco and Dooby's

Are you one of the great food explorers, stopping at no end to taste what is new and unique then you don’t want to miss this melding of ethnic flavors from Brusco and Dooby’s.

One day only, this Friday, May 6th from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. come to Cava’s luncheonette Brusco at  1302 Fleet Street in Harbor East for a mashup of Mediterranean and Korean flavors.  Get your falafels with kimchi-cucumber, and soy ginger, or lamb dumplings and other great casual bites that blends Dooby’s, Korean inspired café’s cuisine and Brusco’s modern day flavors from Greece:

Falafels // kimchi-cucumbers, soy-ginger ($6)
Lamb Dumplings // spicydill vinaigrette ($7)
Gyro Buns // tomato, feta, harissa, tzatziki, spicy hummus ($7)
Korean BBQ Gyro // wasabi crema, tomato, pickled onions ($9)
Korean Fried Chicken Sandwich // tzatziki slaw, spicy pickles ($9)
Greek Salad // choice of Korean BBQ gyro or Falafel ($10)
GREEKOREAN fries // spicy-G sauce, creamy feta, oregano ($3.5)
Kimchi Potato Salad ($3)
Fruity Pebble Rice Krisipies ($3)
HoneyGreek Yogurt & Black Sesame Gelato custom made by Dolcezza Gelato ($5)

 “We’re fortunate to have an amazingly collaborative community of chefs and restaurants to
give rise to mashups like these. I’m particularly excited about this popup, as the flavors go
so well together. It’s really a dream come true to merge both Greek and Korean casual fare.”
Phil Han, Dooby’s

No reservations necessary, it is simple counter service – you can order online through www.orderup.com

Where: Brusco’s in Cava – Harbor East – 1302 Fleet Street – Baltmore, MD  11 am to 8 pm.
www.doobys.com  Instagram: @doobysbmore  Facebook: DoobysBmore

www.eatbrusco.com Instagram:  @eatbrusco  Facebook: EatBrusco 

Monday, May 02, 2016

A new taste of spring at B & O American Brasserie


B & O American Brasserie’s Executive Chef Mike Ransom, Mixologist Brendan Dorr and their teams seasonally adapt and brighten their menus.  The rich, warm tones, leather appointments and décor of that of a high end rail car in its heyday add to the 2 story restaurant’s atmosphere.  Located in the former B & O Railroad headquarters, the obvious inspiration of a time passed. Not so the menu.


Attuned to the here and now, one can enjoy what is fresh with B & O’s seasonal updated menu additions.  For example, their winter cocktail menu was called The Spice Box, cocktails with the aromas of an evening by the fire – cinnamon, star anise, allspice and clove. Now that spring has sprung and the B & O American Brassiere’s Paris in Springtime cocktail list is offering the likes of the Dandy Lion; Clear Creek Brandy, Royal Combier, Dandelion Tea, Lemon Jack Ruby Tonic and Soda, The Jazzman; Barsol Pisco, Lillet Rosé, Jasmine Syrup, Lemon, Egg and the cocktail that passed my lips was Purple Rain; Lavender infused Novo Fogo Cachaca, Lemon, Honey-Apple Shrub – so smooth and well balanced. 

Check out full story and slideshow at Examiner.com / Dining 

Sunday, May 01, 2016

Restaurant Association of Maryland announces Stars of the Industry 2016 awards

Each year, through restaurant goers based nominations in multiple categories in the food industry, the Restaurant Association of Maryland narrows it down to the finalists for recognition for a job well done. Who is the Chef of the Year, Craft Brew Program of the Year, Restaurateur of the Year, Favorite New Restaurant and more were announced this evening at the Stars of the Industry Awards Gala. 

The Baltimore Marriott Waterfront Hotel ballroom was packed with the who’s who in the Maryland restaurant industry, dressed to the nines indulging in tasty tidbits at the Spice of Life cocktail reception and then on the Moonlight in Morocco themed awards, dinner and dancing. 

The winners are:
Chef of the Year  Raynold Mendizabal – Urban Butcher
Craft Brew Program of the Year   Alewife – Baltimore
Favorite New Restaurant  Preserve – Annapolis
Favorite Restaurant  Lib's Grill – Perry Hall
Favorite Bar or Tavern   Jimmy's Famous Seafood – Baltimore
Heart of the Industry  Brendan McCool (Manager) – Victoria Gastro Pub
Wine and Beverage Program of the Year . Liquid Assets Wine & Martini Bar – Ocean City
Restaurateur of the Year David Dopkin – Miss Shirley’s Café – Classic Catering

Inducted into the Maryland Hospitality Hall of Honor:
Maggie’s – Westminster
Rusty Scupper – Baltimore
Shenanigan’s Irish Pub & Grille – Ocean City
TJ’s of Calverton Restaurant – Beltsville
Western Sizzlin Restaurant – Cumberland

McCormick Cornerstone of the Industry Award:
Glory Days Grill – Statewide
Irish Restaurant Company – Annapolis
Tabrizi’s – Baltimore
Tino’s Italian Bistro – Columbia


Lifetime Industry Award – Rob Beall – Ledo Pizza Systems

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Cava Mezze puts a new spin on old world Greek flavors


When one thinks of Greek food and foods of the Mediterranean, one thinks of the traditional fare the likes of hand-rolled stuffed grape leaves, spinach pie, roasted lamb, feta cheese, fish fresh from the sea, warm pita bread and many dishes redolent with lemon and oregano. Cava Mezze, now with five locations in the DMV-Rockville, Washington, DC, Clarendon, Olney and Baltimore has brought Greek and Mediterranean flavors into the 21st century with their shared dishes that salute traditional cuisine with a fresh, current day adaptation. Glancing at the Cava Mezze’s menu there are numerous marriages of the old with the new.


An e-mail invitation from Cava Mezze with photographs of their new spring culinary offerings looked so mouthwatering that an afternoon jaunt was in order to Baltimore’s Harbor East.  It is rare, I mean really rare, that I revel in and kvell over every dish in a meal, however, Cava Mezze is that rare find.  I’m not talking fancy precious food, it is casual dining, shared plates and oh, how I wish there was one in my neighborhood.  

Check out the slideshow and read the full story at Examiner.com/ Dining 

Saturday, April 23, 2016

The Rusty Scupper welcomes new Executive Chef William Wilt


The Rusty Scupper and Bar is the quintessential harborside restaurant offering patrons one of the most dramatic views of Baltimore’s harbor, one of the few with the view of Haborplace, Downtown, the Aquarium, Pier Five, Harbor East and down to the  Locust Point’s Domino Sugar sign that glows in rich yellow and orange hues.  The panoramic views are visible from almost any table, with numerous their large picture windows: sunset is mesmerizing, as is watching the boats coming in and out of the city’s harbor.

The Rusty Scupper and Bar is not new to Baltimore, in fact, they have been at their Key Highway location for over 30 years delighting tourist and locals alike.  A self parking lot makes it easy access, and the two hour fee of just $8 adds to the appeal.  Over 30 years, chefs have come and gone and this past March Executive Chef William Wilt took the helm, adding his 20 years experience throughout the Maryland and Washington DC area restaurants to the Scupper’s cuisine.  There are things you do not change like the crab cake, although there are featured specials.  An invite to meet Chef Wilt and partake of his culinary creations could not be turned down. 

Read the full story and watch the slideshow at Examiner.com / Dining

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Chef Melanie Molinaro to open Stall 11 in Remington's R. House


Executive Chef Melanie Molinaro, known to Baltimoreans for being top toque at Robin Haas’s restaurants ; The  Nickel Taphouse, Birroteca and Encantada. One of the few women chefs in the region, Molinaro has built a name for herself especially at the seasonal inspired, locally-sourced, vegetarian driven Encantada.  She has now partnered with Urban Pastoral. A high-tech hydroponic growing facility in East Baltimore to open the 2nd announced food stall on the first floor of the 50,000-square-foot historic automobile showroom and garage in Remington – Seawall Development’s $12 million food and drink emporium, R. House. 

Watch the video and read the full story on Examiner.com / Dining

Wednesday, April 06, 2016

New restaurants for Owings Mills: Eggspectation, Bon Fresco and IHOP

This past week Eggspectation opened in Metro Centre off Painters Mill Road, 10209 Grand Central Ave, located next to the subway station.  This Eggspectation is different from the others in the area, this is owned by the parent company based in Montreal – it is the first one they own in the US.  In fact, this Eggspectation, is and will be a template for future Eggspectations; modern, full bar, plenty of flat screen televisions serving breakfast, lunch and dinner.  The price point is more to the medium side than the cost effective side.  A slice of cheesecake was $10.

Open at 7 a.m until 10 p.m daily, Eggspectation offers a food and drink during happy hour. WEBSITE

The leases have just been signed for two restaurants in the Boulevard College Center on Owings Mills Boulevard. Both restaurants intend to open in mid-summer of this year and join additional dining options at the shopping center that includes Bonefish Grill, Edo Sushi, Five Guys Burgers and Fries, Pie Five Pizza Co., Outback Steakhouse, Stone’s Cove Kitbar and Subway.   The shopping center is adjacent to Stevenson University not far from Reisterstown Road and Interstate 795.

The press release reads, “The Owings Mills location represents the fourth for Bon Fresco, which also operates restaurants throughout Anne Arundel, Howard and Prince George’s Counties. The concepts offers a variety of deli-style sandwiches such as corned beef, roasted turkey breast, tuna salad and grilled vegetable, together with freshly-made soups and salads. The International House of Pancakes owns and operates nearly 1700 locations throughout the United States and Canada and is recognized for its diverse breakfast menu including egg varieties and omelets, French toast and waffles. IHOP also offers a complete luncheon and dinner menu.    

Monday, April 04, 2016

Get your tickets for Emporiyum before they are all gone

The very unique, pop-up market Emporiyum is back for a 3rd year here in Baltimore.  Emporiyum gathers specialty food vendors, restaurants and manufactures, bringing their victuals and libations under one roof, for two days only for you to sample, and perchance to purchase. These are not your atypical vendors; they are curated each year featuring unique small, independent retailers and restaurants.


Each year the location changes, in the past year it was held at the Thames Street Wharf building and last year the former H & S Bakery distribution center at 601 S. Eden Street – this year, Emporiyum will be held  in the former Best Buy location at 600 E. Pratt Street – 3rd floor. 

Get all the details at Examiner.com / Dining 

Now open for lunch - Roy's Hawaiian Fusion in Harbor East


It is only recently that the well established Roy’s Hawaiian Fusion restaurant in Harbor East started offering lunch along with their happy hour and dinner service. Lunch is served weekdays starting at 11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. With Hawaiian cuisine trending, it is the perfect excuse to come into Roy’s Hawaiian Fusion  and taste the flavors of these tropical Pacific islands. 

“Maybe it was inevitable—with tiki drinks suddenly chic again and surfer culture capturing fashion’s imagination that Hawaiian food would be ready for a moment in the sun.” Vogue – Dec, 2015

“No longer lumped into Asian fusion or executed as a version of Spam-topped this, spit-roasted that, contemporary Hawaiian food is riding a new wave.” Tasting Table 5-15


Go beyond your burger or pizza for lunch and try one of Roy’s lunch plates – 4 courses on a bento inspired plate: Teriyaki tofu, Karaage fried chicken, Teppanyaki shrimp, macadamia nut crusted Mahi Mahi, or braised beef short ribs, each comes with a green salad, soup, pineapple fried rice and a fresh baked cookie – starting at $12.90 and topping off at $16.90.  

Check out the complete story and slideshow at Examiner.com/Dining 

Friday, April 01, 2016

Keccos Woodfire Kitchen to open in Reisterstown

Reisterstown, Maryland and Carroll County residents can look forward to a new restaurant located in Reisterstown Crossing on Westminster Pike.  The former owner of Glydon’s Mezzanotte Bistro, Tony Scotto DiFrega, is coming back to his old neighborhood with an Italian inspired restaurant featuring brick oven pizzas.  Kecco’s Woodfire Kitchen will be a full service, sit down restaurant.

Tony Scotto DiFrega named the restaurant after his son, and brings diverse experience in restaurant ownership and management to this new venture. He recently sold an Italian restaurant in the Elkridge section of Howard County to open Keccos Woodfire Kitchen.

“I live extremely close to the location and I understand the community and what they want from a restaurant experience,” explained Tony Scott DiFrega. “There are many families that look for reasonably-priced and high-quality meals, and we intend to service this audience in a comfortable and warm environment. The number of businesses in the area is also growing, so we see an opportunity for strong lunchtime traffic as well.”   

Look for the opening mid-summer. 


Keccos Woodfire Kitchen – 114 Westminster Pike – Reisterstown, MD 

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