Hot Plate: Crab & Beer Festival, Bollinger Dinner at Charleston

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Sotto Sopra Opera Night
Sotto Sopra Opera Night

With crabs galore, beer and plenty of dining under the stars, this week’s food and restaurant events prove that summer is in full swing in Baltimore. There’s a lot happening next week!

Crabs & Beer

Crabs and beer…that’s what Maryland summers are all about. On Saturday, June 25, celebrate what our state does best at the third annual Chesapeake Crab & Beer Festival at Rash Field. With beer, music, fun activities and over 30,000 crabs, all with a great view of the harbor, the festival is sure to be a blast.

Dining Al Fresco

Late June is a lovely time for dining under the stars. On Saturday, June 25, Prigel Family Creamery will host Long Green Valley’s Table, a four-course meal featuring food by Ben Simpkins of Richardson Farms. The menu, which includes treats like slow-smoked pork belly and tomato jam on a sourdough cracker, blistered tomatoes with chive butter and pit-smoked strip steak topped with a rosemary biscuit crust, sounds terrific.

Start Picking

On Sunday, June 26, Ryleigh’s Oyster Hunt Valley will host a crab feast for the Ryleigh’s Oyster Lacrosse Club. The party will feature beer, wine, live music and – of course – tons of crabs.

 Amaro Love

Also on Sunday, June 26, Aggio will host the second in its series of classes about the Italian liqueur Amaro. This session will focus on the quirky aspects of the herbal drink. The class includes three pours, one cocktail and a charcuterie plate. 

Brewer’s Art Helps Out Mr. Trash Wheel

One think we love about Baltimore is helping another next week. On June 30, The Brewer’s Art is raising money for the Inner Harbor’s trash-collecting water wheel. Throughout the evening, 25 percent of the proceeds from the Mt. Vernon spot’s dining room will go toward the Waterfront Partnership and Mr. Trash Wheel. The Brewer’s Art is also offering a beer dinner in addition to its regular menu.

Picnicking by the Harbor

On June 27, Charleston in Harbor East will host a special dinner on the patio (weather permitting), pairing three selections of Bollinger champagne with picnic-inspired dishes created by Chef Cindy Wolf. The menu sounds luxurious and fabulous, featuring lobster, crab and seasonal flavors, and ending on a sweet note with Grand Marnier soufflé.

Sip & Sing

Some of Baltimore’s best events are ones that take place on a regular basis, including Cellar Sessions at Wit & Wisdom and Opera Night at Sotto Sopra, both of which take place this week.

On Saturday, June 25, Wit & Wisdom sommelier Julie Dalton’s Cellar Sessions will go continental, as she walks lucky wine-lovers through the wines of Spain.

Sotto Sopra’s popular Opera Night takes place on Sunday, June 26. The evening includes a fabulous multi-course meal, with dishes like cucumber gazpacho and potato and ricotta ravioli with sautéed crawfish.

 Eat Your Greens, Drink Your Reds

Everybody knows that red wine is an excellent match for a big, juicy steak. But what does that mean for vegetable lovers? Are they doomed to a culinary life of white wines only?

Not necessarily, according to the team at La Cuchara. On Tuesday, June 28, the Basque restaurant will host a vegetarian wine dinner pairing five vegetarian courses with “powerful reds” chosen by sommelier Greg Schwab. 

Downtown Dogs

On June 28, to celebrate the opening of their new Baltimore headquarters, German frank maker Hofmann Brands will give away free hot dogs, starting at 11:30 a.m. The Hofmann trailer will be just outside the Pratt Street market – stop by for a free lunch. 

Foodie Mashups

Chefs love getting creative. Take Chef Cyrus Keefer, who, two weeks ago, Chef Cyrus Keefer launched his Defie Moi pop-up series at Food Market. On July 1, he takes the French-Asian street food concept to Union Brewing.

And on June 30, fans of Vietnamese and Mexican can celebrate both cuisines at Flights and Phoritos, a summer menu launch party at Saigon Today. What is a phorito? It’s pho – the traditional Vietnamese soup – in burrito form. Complicated, perhaps, but definitely intriguing.

Wines at Roy’s

On June 29, Roy’s in Harbor East will host a five-course dinner featuring the wines of California winemakers Silver Oak and Twomey. The meal includes dishes like seared Hokkaido sea scallops with lobster claw and filet with English vegetables.

Francais on the Square

On June 29, Canton Square is slated to get a new restaurant: La Folie Steak Frites & Wine Bar, opening in the space that previously housed Tavern on the Square.

As the name suggests, La Folie’s emphasis will be on French bistro fare – exciting news for local Francophiles…and anyone who loves steak!

Planning Ahead

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

July 14: Crabaret at Gertrude’s 

July 16: Fire & Fizz at Old Westminster Winery 

July 22: Baltimore City Restaurant Week 

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