Hot Plate: Southside Stakes, Outdoor Hampden-Area Eating

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The patio at Cosima
The patio at Cosima

With the summer solstice rapidly approaching – and school finally over for everyone – it’s time to take advantage of lingering sunlight and later bedtimes. Local restaurants are making that easy, with events from patio parties to cocktail competitions.

Here’s a look at what’s happening in the Baltimore restaurant world next week:

Step Outside

Have you been to the patio at Cosima yet? The new Italian restaurant, which opened earlier this year, has opened up its gorgeous patio for meals and drinks. Get there while the weather is good – it feels like the most charming little corner of Europe, right in the middle of Baltimore City.

The Woodberry Kitchen patio is open, as well. Yesterday, the restaurant kicked off a weekly patio party with an unveiling of Peak Series from Devils Backbone Brewery. The parties will continue, though – every Thursday, all summer long.

Heavy Metal Parking Lot at Union Craft

Tomorrow evening, Union Craft Brewing celebrates the thirtieth anniversary of the release of the rock documentary “Heavy Metal Parking Lot,” with a parking lot party of their own. The film will be screened outside Union Craft and metal bands will play – and there will be food and drink. The party will double as a launch party for Union Craft’s new Heavy Metal Parking Lot the Beer and Pork Lord Tacos and Headbangin’ Hot Dogs will provide the eats.

Wine-ing Up

Wine lovers should head to Canton this weekend, for the second annual Baltimore Wine Fest. Starting at 12 pm on Saturday, June 18, the festival takes place at Canton Waterfront Park and will feature over 140 wines from all over the world, plus great food from local restaurants, cooking demonstrations, shopping and live music.

Naptown Bound

Early summer is a lovely time in Annapolis – and with multiple special dinners slated for this week, now is an especially good time to head south.

On Tuesday, June 21, head to Eastport for a Chef’s Table Wine Dinner at Blackwall Hitch. The five-course meal by Chef Zachary Pope will include dishes like duck breast with savory vegetable crepes and blowfish tail with grit cakes. Each will be paired with a complementary wine.

On Thursday, June 23, Red Red Wine Bar and Dry 85, sister restaurants on Main Street, will host a Smooth Ambler Dinner and Pairing + Private Tasting. The evening will include a three-course meal at Red Red Wine Bar, with spirit pairings, followed by a trip to Dry 85 for a tasting from Smooth Ambler Ambassador John Foster’s personal collection. 

Southsides All Around

Crushes are great, but drinkers with a penchant for Baltimore history know that Southsides are the quintessential Baltimore summertime drink. On June 22, Baltimore magazine will partner with the Maryland Distillers Guild and Baltimore Bartenders’ Guild, celebrating the cocktail – and our local love of competition – with Southside Stakes, held at the Museum of Industry.

Local distilleries and bartenders will compete for bragging rights – but the real winners will be the guests, who will get to sample a variety of versions of the beloved drink.

Mulberry Madness

It’s berry season! Get in on the action starting on Thursday, June 23, at during Mulberry Madness, a three-day series of events organized by the Baltimore Orchard Project. Events include mulberry harvests, tastings and education and will take place in Hampden and Remington.

R. House Announces BRD

Remington’s R. House has announced yet another tenant. This one, BRD, will focus on fried chicken sandwiches and wings with global influences. It’s the fifth restaurant concept to be announced by R. House, which is slated to open this fall.

Big Weekend for Dads

Sunday is Father’s Day and if you haven’t made any plans yet, don’t worry – you still have time. Restaurants all over the area are getting in on the Father’s Day action, with special menus and activities to honor dads.

Local restaurants doing something for Father’s Day include Cinnamon Tree Restaurant, Birroteca, Encantada, The Nickel Taphouse, La Cuchara (which also launches an ongoing brunch program on Sunday), Mt. Washington Tavern, Maggie’s Farm, Rusty Scupper, Truffle Butta Bistro, Silver Queen Café, Cinghiale, Wit & Wisdom, Fleet Street Kitchen and Cunningham’s.

Planning Ahead

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

June 28: Vegetarian Wine Dinner at La Cuchara 

July 14: Crabaret at Gertrude’s 

July 16: Fire & Fizz at Old Westminster Winery 

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