This week, the Baltimore food world celebrates all things winter, from ice to truffles, and gets ready for the Year of the Rabbit. Here’s a look at what’s coming up:
Openings and announcements
Liberatore’s in Timonium celebrated thirty years in business this week. Congratulations to the Liberatore family and their team on an impressive run.
La Calle, which closed its doors downtown at the end of December, has announced plans to reopen in the Fells Point space that formerly housed Sammy’s Enoteca.
Congratulations to Kevin Atticks, who was just tapped to be the Maryland Secretary of Agriculture under newly minted Gov. Wes Moore. Until his appointment, Atticks was the founder and CEO of Grow & Fortify, an organization that has been a longtime champion of Maryland’s beer, wine and distilling industries.
The owner of the Fells Point bar One-Eyed Mike’s is putting the business up for auction. The bar, which is known for its Grand Marnier club, is being auctioned by Alex Cooper. The auction is online only and ends at 11 a.m. on Feb. 22. According to the owner, the bar will continue to operate without a change in management for at least several months following the auction.
Hamilton-Lauraville’s Char’d City is also for sale. The restaurant opened in 2019 and, shortly thereafter, had to grapple with the challenges posed by the pandemic. In May of last year, the owners launched a GoFundMe page to raise money to build a bar, in efforts to broaden the restaurant’s appeal.
Lunar New Year festivities
The Year of the Rabbit begins on Jan. 22 and there are many ways to celebrate in the Baltimore area.
Head downtown to West Shore Park and the Baltimore Visitor Center this weekend for the inaugural Lunar Night Cultural Festival. The event, which takes place on Saturday and Sunday, includes performances from a variety of artists and performers representing multiple Asian cultures, plus food from over 20 vendors, including Ekiben, Water Song, The Chicken Lab and Café Dear Leon.
The Year of the Rabbit will also be the theme of the Harbor Point Ice Festival – an outdoor festival featuring ice sculptors creating Lunar New Year-themed works of art (with chainsaws) live and in person. The festival also includes music, hot and cold drinks from Bar Movement, and a handful of food trucks, including Ekiben (who is having a very busy weekend), STUFFED and Potato Craving Factory.
At Pierpoint Restaurant in Fells Point, Chef Nancy Longo has created an Asian-inspired menu available on Friday, Jan. 20. The prix-fixe pop-up menu is $45 per person and looks like a lot of fun.
The Corner Pantry’s Lunar New Year specials are available through Jan. 21. During lunch service, the Lake-Falls restaurant has a variety of Asian treats on the menu for dining in and carrying out.
In honor of the holiday, Guinness Open Gate Brewery has released a new beer: Yuzu to the Moon. It is a lager made with Jasmine rice and the fruit yuzu, and is now available on draft and in cans at the brewery.
Pop-up at The Sinclair
On Saturday, head to The Sinclair, the home of H3irloom Food Group, for a fun pop-up event with appearances from King of Eggrolls, Nostalgia Baking Co., and The Urban Oyster. The pop-up starts at 10 a.m. and lasts until about 2 p.m.
Full Sensory Harry Potter
This weekend, The Charmery’s Full Sensory Movie Experience events make their post-COVID return with multiple screenings of “Harry Potter & The Chamber of Secrets.”
“Full sensory” in this case means tastes and smells that fit with parts of the movie, to make the overall viewing experience that much more thrilling. The Harry Potter screenings are, hopefully, just the beginning of a long run of full sensory events.
Guest Chef Dinner at The Milton Inn
During the winter season, The Milton Inn will host a series of guest chef pop-up dinners, during which acclaimed chefs partner with the restaurant’s Chef Chris Scanga on extravagant meals.
The first in this series takes place on Wednesday, Jan. 25, when Baltimore’s own Chef Cindy Wolf (part of the team that owns The Milton Inn) travels to Sparks to cook with Chef Scanga. The pair will create a truffle-centric menu inspired by the food of La Beaugraviè in Mondragon, France.
Snowy season eats
Magdalena launched a new menu this week, drawing inspiration from the flavors of the season, including root vegetables and game meats. Dishes include options like a soup made with apples and parsnips from karma Farm, topped with salsify cream and pecan relish, and a braised elk osso bucco with Virginia peanuts, radishes, cabbage, salted plum and sassafras jus.
At Sotto Sopra, the winter menu includes a gorgeous cream of crab soup with fresh crab and topped with bacon.
The winter months at Silver Queen Café include dishes like short rib topped fries – with a little green on top, so they’re healthy, too.
At Foraged Eatery, the kitchen has been dipping into its stash of items it preserved last year, including asparagus and ramps.
We are still in peak Restaurant Week season.
Baltimore County diners still have a few days to enjoy Restaurant Week deals – the county promotion runs through Monday. Howard County’s Restaurant Week is going strong right now, Harford County’s starts Jan. 20, and Baltimore City’s kicks off on Friday, Jan. 27.
Planning for the future
Mark your calendars for: