Once you try most of the restaurants on St. Paul Street (which, unfortunately, doesn’t take too long), you might want to explore places outside Charles Village. If you find it difficult to choose where to visit first, don’t worry! Here are some recommendations for good food in Baltimore.
The classic tourist spot in Baltimore is, of course, Fells Point. Located right in front of the harbor, Thames Street Oyster House serves crab cakes, believed to originate in the Chesapeake Bay region, along with many other seafood options. I would recommend ordering some fresh raw oysters to share with friends and trying the New England Lobster Roll as the main dish. Choose baked sweet potatoes as your side!
Anyone craving dessert after the meal can visit SACRÉ SUCRÉ, just a few minutes away from the waterfront. It’s one of the few (if not only) French dessert shops in Baltimore that offer a wide range of sweets from macarons to petit gâteau. I've tried most of the items here and my favorite is the Matcha Tart 100%. Visit early on weekends since popular pastries sell out quickly.
After a short 15-minute walk through Wyman Park, you will arrive at Hampden, a small neighborhood with great food choices. If you happen to visit on a Wednesday, go to Paulie Gee’s Hampden for their wood-fired pizzas that are only offered on Wednesdays. My favorite Wednesday special is the Cherry Jones, a gorgonzola-based white pizza with dried cherries, prosciutto and honey. If you’re a sweet pizza enthusiast like me, definitely give it a try!
If you want to taste something unique, Ekiben is the perfect match for you. They are well known for the Neighborhood Bird, which is a piece of fried chicken thigh with spicy sambal mayo sauce on top. My personal favorite is the Tofu Brah which mixes fried tofu with their housemade peanut sauce. You can choose to either eat the food with either a Chinese steamed bun or rice. You can also visit them at any of their other locations in Fells Point or South Baltimore.
Another great way to get out of campus is by riding the Charm City Circulator. The Purple Route stops in front of Kajiken and takes you to Federal Hill, a small neighborhood near the south end of the city. Shoyou Sushi is a small restaurant near the hill specializing in California rolls with a creative twist (find the Ultimate Special Roll section on the menu). I usually order soft-shell crabs as an appetizer and get the Sweet Honey Roll and the Japanese Burrito to share with friends.
After the sushi run, take a walk towards Federal Hill Park with your friends. You will then soon find people waiting in front of Bmore Licks. Inside, one side of the wall is entirely covered with an exhaustive list of homemade flavors that range from the classic Cookie Monster to the unique Unholy Cannoli. Don’t be overwhelmed though, since you can try the flavors before ordering! Whether it’s the hard or soft-serve ice cream, the shop is always worth the visit. They have another location near Patterson Park as well.
Though it may be daunting to get a peek into the food scene of Baltimore at first, you will grow to appreciate the hidden gems that the city has to offer. Explore the city and make it your home for the next four years!