Courtesy of B’More Media – They’re tucked away among brownstones and cobblestone streets or holding anchor over the Inner Harbor. They’re Baltimore’s classic restaurants. They serve as a reminder that in the fickle, faddish world of the restaurant industry, there are some that have stood the test of time by keeping it simple.
To compete with the bevy of restaurants that have opened over the last half year, classics like the Black Olive, Sotto Sopra, the Rusty Scupper, Tio Pepe, and the Prime Rib are using the freshest ingredients, offering discounts and other promotions via social media, refreshing their properties and cutting costs – but not corners.
While there’s no one secret to success, consultant and executive director of Bilingual Hospitality Training Solutions, Juliet Bodinetz-Rich, offers advice to remain open for decades in Baltimore.
“Service is as important as great food,” she says. “Many restaurants keep the same staff for years. That shows that the owner is doing something right.”
The Black Olive
The Black Olive, while the most recently established, still has a decade (or more) on many of Baltimore’s restaurants. Executive Chef Pauline Spiliadis and her husband, Stelios, opened the Greek restaurant in 1997. While Chef Spiliadis is not Greek herself, she has a soft spot for the food.
“My mother-in-law is an excellent cook,” she says. “I experimented on my family for years.”
At the Black Olive, customers see fresh fish imported from the Chesapeake to the Mediterranean, filleted in the dining room.
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