Hot Plate

Hot Plate: Cindy Lou’s Fish House and Monarque open, Sando in the Hando at The Charmery, white truffles appear on menus and more

Cindy Lou’s Fish House opens in Harbor Point this week.

This week, the Baltimore restaurant scene is full of good news, including high profile openings, updated autumn menus, and fun collaborations. Here’s a look at what’s coming up:

Hot Plate: Bushel & Peck, Cowboy Row and Cielo Verde open, N. Charles St. goes walkable, new fall menus pop up

Two oyster-centric spots – The Local Oyster and True Chesapeake Oyster Co. – celebrate anniversaries this month.

It’s mid-October, which means leaves are changing – and so are menus in restaurants across Baltimore. This week brings news of Oktoberfests, new fall flavors on plates and in glasses across the city, and a handful of openings and anniversaries.

Here’s a look at what’s on tap for the week ahead:

Hot Plate: Preakness parties, Oktoberfest celebrations, EKIBEN at The Charmery in Towson and more

NiHao’s Mid-Autumn Festival menu includes 10 dim sum dishes and more.

From Preakness parties to Oktoberfest celebrations to seafood dinners, the next few weeks look like fun ones on the Baltimore restaurant scene. Here’s a look at what’s happening:

Hot Plate: Johnny Appleseed Days at Weber’s Farm, Meet & Make with NiHao, Farm to Chef goes virtual and more

Apple, goat cheese and honey tart is one of the options on Classic Catering’s special menu for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur.

Autumn officially begins this week, which means it’s a great time for outdoor dining, among other things. In addition to all the excellent al fresco dining options Baltimore restaurants have put in place, over the next couple weeks, the local culinary scene includes a lineup of fun activities – both virtual and in-person – to help food lovers make the most of the season.

Here’s a look at what’s coming up:

Hot Plate: Renn Fest at Don’t Know Tavern, Fuisine and Friends & Family open, Chaat Hour at Good Neighbor and more

Baltimore Spirit Company is building a new cocktail bar next to its distillery in Union Collective; it is slated to open next year.

The fall is looking promising for Baltimore food lovers, with many new concepts opening and events on the calendar. While restaurant operations are still a bit unusual, thanks to COVID-related protocols and guidelines, there’s still a lot to do over the next few weeks. Here’s a look at what’s coming up:

Hot Plate: Cafe Dear Leon opens, Sculpture Garden snowballs, dumplings at Ekiben and more

Mt. Washington Tavern’s new meal and drink kits are just one of the creative offerings local restaurants have launched to expand business during the pandemic.

Every day, the Baltimore restaurant scene slowly inches its way back to normalcy. Over the next few weeks, Baltimore food lovers can look forward to fun events and trying some new places, as well as revisiting old favorites.

Here’s a look at what’s happening in the restaurant world right now:

Hot Plate: Sally O’s, Water Song Yunnan Kitchen and other spots open, restaurants celebrate seasonal ingredients, wine dinners and more

Bluebird in Hampden has reopened as a burger, dog and boozy shake pop-up called “Until Conditions Improve.”

August just might be the best time for dining out in Maryland. From peaches to corn to tomatoes to locally-caught crab and tuna, restaurants are celebrating the bounty of the season. Though dining out continues to look different than it did in the past, local restaurants are making the most of the situation with pop-up outdoor spaces and special menus.

This week, there’s plenty of room for optimism, with the announcement of several new spots opening and fun events on the horizon. Here’s a look at what’s coming up:

Hot Plate: Bottoms Up Bagels opens, new Whitehall Market vendors, al fresco dining expands and more

Guinness Open Gate Grewery has reorganized its outdoor area to make social distancing and safe enjoyment of the space easy.

Though the reopening of the Baltimore restaurant scene hasn’t been all smooth sailing, the past few weeks have brought some good news in terms of openings, collaborations and upcoming events.

Here’s a look at what’s happening locally:

Hot Plate: Restaurants are coming back, but it’s far from business as usual

We are looking forward to seeing empty tables – like the ones at Chez Hugo Bistro (above) – safely filled with diners enjoying great meals.

It’s been nearly three months since the last installment of this column. While Baltimore restaurants as a whole never went completely dark during that time, and many restaurant owners and employees are working harder than ever, for restaurant guests, it’s been a quiet time at home.

For the restaurant industry, things are still far from business as usual and are changing rapidly, but glimmers of normality are starting to emerge: announcements of future openings, collaborations between chefs, new dates for postponed events and, of course, the upcoming return to indoor dining, albeit at reduced capacity.

So with that, Hot Plate is back! The column will run only every few weeks to start but hopefully sooner rather than later, both the restaurant industry and the column will be back to their regular schedules.

The good news is that already, there’s a lot to look forward to in the Baltimore restaurant world. Here’s a look at what’s happening:

Hot Plate: How to support Baltimore’s restaurant industry during coronavirus

The Capital Grille is one of many local restaurants offering carryout options right now; the downtown restaurant is also selling uncooked steaks to take home.

For the second week in a row, this is not the usual, lighthearted installment of Hot Plate, sharing information about wine dinners and seafood festivals, as events are canceled and restaurants are no longer open in their traditional capacity, in an effort to flatten the curve and stem the transmission of coronavirus.

This is a challenging time around the world and in every industry. The restaurant business, with low margins and reliance on tipping and on customers gathering in one place to generate income, has been hit especially hard (though it is by no means the only industry suffering).

To understand some of what restaurants are dealing with right now, read this Facebook post from Clavel owner Lane Harlan.

So as lovers of Baltimore and lovers of restaurants, what can we do to help? There are a few things.