Baltimore Restaurants

Baltimore loves seafood, and, in particular, crabs. Soft- or hard-shell crabs, crab cakes, crab dip—the city's passion for clawed crustaceans seems to have no end. Flag down a Baltimore native and ask them where the best crab joint is and you'll get dozens of different options.

But crabs aren’t the only thing on the menu. Baltimore's burgeoning restaurant scene features a world of flavors: Afghan, Greek, American, French, Italian, Korean, and other ethnic cuisines. In recent years, Baltimore’s culinary cred has grown, thanks to the efforts of standout restauranteurs such as Spike Gjerde, Tony Foreman, and Cindy Wolf.

Most of the Inner Harbor has chain and hotel restaurants, so if you want to eat well, spread out. Harbor East is the city's newest center for fine dining. A few blocks east of the Inner Harbor, Little Italy has a host of Italian restaurants, most of which serve classic southern Italian, spaghetti-with-garlic-bread fare. Yet father east, Fells Point has some renowned local restaurants. Or, head north. Charles Village, near Johns Hopkins University, Hampden, to the northwest, and posh Roland Park, at the city’s suburban limits, have outstanding dining options. Note that most places generally stop serving by 10 pm, if not earlier.

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  • 1. Charleston

    $$$$ | Harbor East | American

    Chef-owner Cindy Wolf's cuisine is simply unparalleled. The kitchen here may have a South Carolina Low Country accent, but it's also skilled...Read More

  • 2. Cinghiale

    $$$ | Inner Harbor | Italian

    The spotlight is on wine at Cinghiale (pronounced "ching-GYAH-lay"), an open, inviting space with tall, wide windows. It's one of Baltimore...Read More

  • 3. Johnny's

    $$ | Roland Park | Eclectic

    Chef Kiko Wilson adeptly mixes Latin, Pan Asian, Southern, and California flavors. Tender coffee-rubbed short ribs are balanced by a crunchy...Read More

  • 4. Miss Shirley's

    $$ | Inner Harbor | American

    With amazing pancakes, omelets, and French toast, this upscale cafe, now with locations at the Inner Harbor and in North Baltimore's Roland...Read More

  • 5. Pazo

    $$ | Fells Point | Italian

    An expansive 19th-century warehouse is home to this fashionable, two-level restaurant that celebrates Italian cuisine from regions south of...Read More

  • 6. Petit Louis

    $$$ | Roland Park | French

    Reservations are a must at Baltimore's best French restaurant. Petit Louis specializes in homey French comfort foods: onion soup bubbling with...Read More

  • 7. The Helmand

    $ | Mount Vernon | Afghan

    Owned by Hamid Kharzai's brother, Qayum Karzai, Helmand serves outstanding Afghan fare in a casual yet elegant space. Beautiful woven textiles...Read More

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