Baltimore Magazine’s “Best of Baltimore Party” 2011

**This post was originally written by me for The Fab Empire, check out The Fab Empire for all things Fabulous in Baltimore, DC, New York and Boston **

The aroma of fine cuisine was in the air as Baltimore Magazine rolled out the red carpet and celebrated their annual “Best of Baltimore” party at the Hippodrome Theatre (12 North Eutaw Street). Every year Baltimore Magazine opens a poll for its readers to vote on the best food and cocktails in Baltimore. The winning restaurants were in attendance Thursday night as guests sampled the appetizers, entrees and cocktails that put them at the top of the list.

Many of our favorite restaurants were there, Roy’s Hawaiian Fusion, City Café, Blue Hill Tavern, RA Sushi, and many more.The selections of cocktails were endless as the event featured a Vodka Bar, Tequila Bar, Rum Bar, Wine Bar and Beer Bar.

The CoverGirl VIP Lounge was my personal favorite because I got the chance to fill up my makeup bag with free mascara, lipstick and lipgloss. Baltimore Magazine is now featured on the Apple IPAD and they were giving away chances to win a free IPAD 2. Guests also enjoyed a live band and DJ in the main ballroom, as well as a photo booth to capture those silly and special memories of the night.

My personal sampled favorites were:  Corn Pudding Crab Cakes from Gertrude’s,  Lambchops from Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse,  Mandarin Chicken from Trader Joe’s,  Bacardi Banana  Ice Cream from Jack & Jill, and the Pomegranate Margarita.

Congrats to all the winners of Baltimore’s Best!

Dish Crawl Baltimore: May 2013

**This post was originally written by me for The Fab Empire, check out The Fab Empire for all things Fabulous in Baltimore, DC, New York and Boston **

Food Lovers Rejoice!  The national phenomenon known as Dishcrawl has finally made its way to Baltimore and debuted “Crawling through Canton” earlier this month.   If you are not familiar with Dishcrawl, it started on the West Coast with a group of people traveling to neighborhood restaurants together and sampling the best dishes these places had to offer.  The monthly event has expanded to 42 states and several areas in Canada.  Not only do the “crawlers” get to sample the best in local cuisine, but they can also talk to the owners and chefs of the restaurants to get an authentic feel of what ingredients were used to make these dishes and what the dishes represent.

The Crawl through Canton consisted of two separate groups of 15-20 people visiting Canton favorites such as Of  Love and Regret, Jack’s Bistro, Jasa Kabob, and Dangerously Delicious Pies.  The groups three dishes at every location but just to name a few, they sampled braised lamb-stuffed rigatoni, macaroni & cheese with chocolate, barbecued chicken tikka masala, and Baltimore bomb pie (loaded with BERGER cookies).

Why wait until Baltimore Restaurant week to get your foodie fix?  Dishcrawl Baltimore is the newest addition to any foodie’s bucket list.  They will be exploring all neighborhoods in Baltimore and offering themed Dishcrawl events also.  This experience is a great way to explore new neighborhoods and taste new and exciting dishes with old and new friends.

For more information on Dishcrawl visit their website at http://www.dishcrawl.com/baltimore

13th Floor: Lucky You. Lucky Me.

Anybody that knows me knows that I LIVE for a new restaurant opening!  Imagine my excitement when I found out the 13th we re-opening  My BFF Mackenzie (You will see me reference her very frequently in this blog) and I went to check out the new digs on a random Wednesday night.

13thBar

The new 13th Floor is nothing like the original. I must admit that I liked the original, but the new and improved space is the adult version of the 13th floor you remember.  Same breathtaking views of the city but the decor has changed to a classic and more upscale restaurant/lounge. Our bartender explained that the new decor is a throwback to the 1920’s and 30’s.  Also a throwback, are the cocktails on the drink menu with names like “The Fitzgerald” and “Hemingway Daiquiri”  The new menu features 13 cocktails and 13 tapas sized plates; this of course is a clever nod to the obvious “13” in 13th Floor.  There is also an extensive wine and beer menu available.

Round 13 Rum Punch & Peach John Daly

I ordered the Rum Punch mainly because it has a splash of guava and almond syrup and Mackenzie ordered the Peach John Daly which is Peach Vodka, Iced Tea, and some other ingredients that I will share with you in a later post.

The food menu features dishes such as Ahi Tuna Tacos and Crab Stuffed Squash Blossoms. A signature cocktail will cost you $10-$12 and the food is $10.00-$16.00.

Potato Pancakes with Smoked Salmon and Caviar
Ahi Tuna Tacos

For dinner we ordered the Potato Pancakes with Smoked Salmon and Caviar (oh you fancy huh) and they were sooooo good.  The inside was light and fluffy …God, I wish they served more than three.  We also ordered the Ahi Tuna Tacos and Chicken Tikka Masala.  If you’ve ever had authentic Chicken Tikka Masala you probably won’t like this version because the rice and chicken are served pre-mixed and it’s not as spicy or flavorful as the authentic counterpart, but nonetheless it’s still tasty.

If I ever have one of those days where I feel like being a grown-up, I will definitely go back to the 13th floor!

…and so it begins.

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