Embrace the spice at this weekend's chili cook-off, benefiting The Baltimore Station.
This weekend’s chili cook-off, benefiting The Baltimore Station, will be the best kind of spicy.
This weekend’s chili cook-off, benefiting The Baltimore Station, will be the best kind of spicy.

It’s Friday, Baltimore. No matter how you feel about the results of Tuesday’s election, you’re probably ready for a distraction from the news. Fortunately, local restaurants are here for you. Here’s what they have on tap this week:

Giving Back

Charitable giving is always fun, and it’s especially enjoyable this time of year. If you’re feeling generous, there are several excellent ways you can give back, while indulging in some fantastic food, this week.

Start tomorrow, with Stars, Stripes, and Chow: Chili Edition. This kid-friendly chili cook-off, which also features food from Mission BBQ, drinks from City Limits Sports Bar and live music, is a benefit for The Baltimore Station, a residential treatment program that supports veterans and others transition out of poverty, addiction and homelessness.

The event takes place at The Baltimore Station itself, just south of M&T Bank Stadium.

Baltimore Station is also the beneficiary of a portion of proceeds from Sunday’s fifth birthday celebration for SoBo Café. Held at the American Visionary Arts Museum, the party will feature live music, beers from Key Brewing and Union Craft Brewing, Charm City Meadworks mead, Mouth Party caramels, and wine and craft cocktails, plus food from the restaurant of the hour.

Also on Sunday, the new Argentine spot in Harbor East, Bar Vasquez, will host a benefit for YouthWorks, Baltimore City’s summer jobs program. The party includes live music, tons of food and an open bar. 

The fun isn’t over when the weekend ends, either. On Monday, The Food Market hosts a dinner benefiting No Kid Hungry, a national nonprofit dedicated to ending childhood hunger. The restaurant’s chef and owner Chad Gauss will collaborate with several other local culinary superstars – Aja Cage of Gunther & Co., Neill Howell of The Corner Pantry, La Cuchara’s Ben Lefenfeld, Zack Mills from Wit & Wisdom and Bryan Voltaggio from Aggio and Volt – on a multi-course meal that is sure to be spectacular.

Finally, on Friday, head back to the AVAM for Stoop Soiree’s Chef’s Tasting Gala. The event, which raises money for the Downtown Baltimore Family Alliance, will feature food from some of Baltimore’s finest, including Points South Latin Kitchen, City Café, and Café Gia.

Get a Glimpse of R. House

R. House, Remington’s new food hall, is just about to open. But if you want to get a taste of some of what to expect from the place once it does finally open its doors, head to Baba’s Mediterranean Kitchen tonight. ARBA, the Mediterranean concept opening in R. House, will be popping up at Baba’s with beef and lamb shwarma, eggplant fries and spicy feta dip, all of which sound fantastic.

Tomorrow, you can go inside R. House for a pre-opening, five-course meal at Stall 11. The theme of the dinner, which is hosted by Stall 11 and Urban Pastoral, is “Down to the Dirt.” It will feature five plant-based courses with juice pairings.


In the Red

Sunday’s History of the Color Red event at Clavel, which includes five courses by Helena del Pesco, structured to tell the cultural story of the color red, sold out nearly immediately. There is a wait list, though, so if tales of color, culture, food and drink are your thing, add your name.

Dinner and a Movie

On Sunday evening, Gnocco pays tribute to the spaghetti western genre with A Fistful of Amaro. The evening will feature spaghetti and meatball specials, western-inspired amaro cocktails by Sam White and Amie Ward (who might be Baltimore’s foremost amaro expert) and, on the TV, a whole lot of Clint Eastwood. 

Oysters at Oceanaire

This season, it seems like every weekend, there’s at least one oyster festival in town. This weekend is no different.

On Sunday, explore the world of oysters and other seafood at Oceanaire’s Oyster Bash, featuring live music, local drinks, fine wines and, of course, tons of bivalves.

What’s New

On Tuesday, November 15, Wine Market Bistro is hosting a Taste and Talk event to roll out their new seasonal cocktails. The drinks will be paired with small bites and a little instruction, as bar manager Aaron Simons walks through the creation of the season’s four new offerings.

Thursday, November 17, La Folie Wine Bar & Steak Frites in Canton celebrates the annual arrival of France’s youngest wine: the Beaujolais Nouveau. The party will include food, live music, dancing and plenty of vin.

Speaking of new, honeygrow opened this week in Charles Village. The Philadelphia-based restaurant chain is a fast casual concept focusing on stir fry and salads made with seasonal ingredients. 

Beef & Beer

Brew House No 16 is getting excited about beer and beef this week, with a meaty four-course dinner featuring cuts of beef from Roseda Farm. The full menu for the dinner, which takes place on Wednesday, November 16, will be a surprise. But Roseda’s meats are high quality and will make a perfect foil for craft brews.

In the Orchard

Artifact Coffee’s Origins speaker series returns this week with A Look at Local Orchards and Fruit Trees. Held at Artifact on Thursday, November 17, the evening will be hosted by Spike Gjerde and include dinner and discussion with panelists from local orchards, nonprofits and the owner of Distillery Lane Ciderworks. 

Thanksgiving Plans

Still searching for something to do on Thanksgiving? If you’d prefer not to spend the day in the kitchen, you still have options. Several Baltimore restaurants will be serving turkey – and more – for the holiday this year.

At The Elephant, a three-course prix fixe dinner includes dishes like pumpkin soup and traditional turkey or ricotta gnocchi, walleye trout or short rib if turkey’s not your favorite.

The night before Thanksgiving is, historically, a big one at the Mt. Washington Tavern, but the restaurant is also open on turkey day itself. The Tavern will serve the regular dinner menu as well as a Thanksgiving buffet, available from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m.

Up in Hunt Valley, Cinnamon Tree Restaurant will feature a three-course prix fixe meal, including turkey, if you’d like, or other options, like prime rib, available from 4 p.m. until 9 p.m.

If you are eating at home but you’re not sure what to drink with dinner, head to Wit & Wisdom tomorrow for a special holiday installment of Cellar Sessions, focusing on the “perfect turkey wine.”

And if you’re in search of the perfect pie to go with that wine, you might want to consider ordering instead of baking yourself. Local restaurants, like Atwaters and the Foreman Wolf group, have their wares available to order and pickup just before the big day.

For more about where to eat out on Thanksgiving, check out this excellent roundup.

Planning Ahead

Here are a few events to look forward to over the next few weeks:

November 25: Black Friday Party at Juniper Culinary Apothecary 

December 6: Beam Craft Bourbon Dinner at The Chasseur 

December 13: Celebrate the Classics wine dinner at La Cuchara

Kit Pollard

Kit Waskom Pollard is a Baltimore Fishbowl contributing writer. She writes Hot Plate every Friday in the Baltimore Fishbowl.