Christina Tkacik
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‘It’s a D.C. thing,’ but will half-smoke sausages catch fire in Baltimore?

‘It’s a D.C. thing,’ but will half-smoke sausages catch fire in Baltimore?

Growing up in Washington, D.C., Andre McCain says, half-smoke sausages were a part of life: family cookouts and birthdays. Indeed, the half-smoke has become the signature dish in our nation’s capital, sold everywhere from street corners to the Smithsonian cafe. McCain is betting that Baltimoreans, too, will develop a taste for his hometown’s favorite food. Last week, he opened a restaurant in Canton’s Can Company, kicking off with a soft opening attended by invited politicians including the city’s comptroller and Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott. Advertisement On the menu: a half-smoke topped...

Apr 7
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Inside Ekiben’s six-hour trip to make a special dish for customer dying of cancer

Inside Ekiben’s six-hour trip to make a special dish for customer dying of cancer

It flurried all day Sunday in Vermont. watched the flakes with dread. Snow in the fryer would be trouble. This is the story of how the owners of Baltimore’s most popular fusion restaurant drove to Vermont over the weekend to cook a meal. It’s also a story about food and love and dying. And really, really amazing customer service. Advertisement It started out simply enough. Canton residents Brandon Jones and his wife, Rina, needed some carryout. Not just any carryout. They needed the tempura broccoli from Ekiben, the beloved local fusion spot that started in Fells Point. Advertisement Not...

Mar 16
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Hogan to lift 10 p.m. curfew on Maryland’s bars and restaurants starting Monday

Hogan to lift 10 p.m. curfew on Maryland’s bars and restaurants starting Monday

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan announced Thursday that restaurants can begin serving customers after 10 p.m. starting Monday, lifting a curfew that was put in place to slow the spread of COVID-19. The new executive order takes effect at 12:01 a.m. Monday. Bars and restaurants must continue to limit indoor dining to 50% capacity, a measure intended to allow social distancing and decrease potential exposure to the coronavirus. Advertisement Hogan issued the curfew in November amid a troubling wave in coronavirus cases as the holidays were approaching. The Republican said Thursday in a statement...

Jan 29
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Baltimore’s new mayor to shut down indoor and outdoor dining as coronavirus surge continues

Baltimore’s new mayor to shut down indoor and outdoor dining as coronavirus surge continues

Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott announces new COVID-19 restrictions which includes bars and restaurants. Baltimore will close all dining at restaurants in the city to combat the spread of coronavirus, part of the first executive order from newly sworn-in Mayor Brandon Scott, who made the decisive move Wednesday on his first full day in office. Tightened restrictions, which go into effect at 5 p.m. Friday, also include caps at 25% of capacity for retail and religious institutions, gyms, malls and museums. Advertisement While outdoor and indoor dining will be shut down, restaurants will still...

Dec 9
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Baltimore’s Atlas Restaurant Group pushes back, saying Ouzo Bay incident wasn’t racially motivated, white child wore khakis

Baltimore’s Atlas Restaurant Group pushes back, saying Ouzo Bay incident wasn’t racially motivated, white child wore khakis

Facing protests and calls for a boycott, Baltimore’s Atlas Restaurant Group is pushing back against allegations of racism. In a statement released Thursday by the company’s lawyers, the restaurant group pointed to its good works, released surveillance photos that show Black patrons at Ouzo Bay and identified the brand of shorts a white child was wearing on Father’s Day. Advertisement The response stems from a now-infamous moment June 21 when Black mom Marcia Grant and her 9-year-old son, Dallas, in Harbor East. A manager informed Grant that the boy’s shorts violated the eatery’s dress code....

July 2, 2020
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Will Baltimore’s Little Italy survive the coronavirus? Here’s how some restaurants are coping.

Will Baltimore’s Little Italy survive the coronavirus? Here’s how some restaurants are coping.

Ray Alcaraz has been eating well during the pandemic. Homemade ravioli at Chiapparelli’s, the meatballs from Joe Benny’s, lemony veal piccata from Aldo’s, and of course, cannoli from Vaccaro’s: Alcaraz, who grew up in Little Italy, is on a one-man mission to patronize the neighborhood’s restaurants in crisis. “I have gone to almost every restaurant to get a meal and I’m still not done,” said Alcaraz, president of the promotion center for Little Italy. Advertisement There’s not much else to do but eat, these days, here, or anywhere else. The bocce court is empty, and so is the church, though...

April 29, 2020
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Downing Kay, likely Maryland’s oldest resident, dies at 112

Downing Kay, likely Maryland’s oldest resident, dies at 112

She remembered World War I. During the Great Depression, she learned to make a can of tuna last a week. When World War II broke out, she tended to her victory garden. But in the last few months of her life, as the coronavirus pandemic raged around her, Downing Jett Kay spent most of her days confined to her bed at Towson’s Pickersgill Retirement Community. Advertisement Mrs. Kay, , died Friday afternoon after a months-long illness. She was 112. Supercentenarians, or people older than 110, are rare; scientists think just dozens remain in the U.S. They include 114-year-old Hester Ford of...

May 17, 2020
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Baltimore City, surrounding counties to allow outdoor dining as coronavirus restrictions lift statewide

Baltimore City, surrounding counties to allow outdoor dining as coronavirus restrictions lift statewide

The reservations are set for 5 p.m. Friday. Staff at Ananda in Fulton look forward to welcoming guests to the open-air patio for the first time in months — even if it means they’ll be wearing face masks and shields and placing dishes on tables spaced 6 feet apart. “We missed serving people,” said Lopsang Lama, bartender and server at the Howard County restaurant known for its nostalgic take on Indian cuisine. Advertisement Restaurants in Baltimore and outlying counties open up for outdoor table service Friday in what many are calling a first step toward normalcy for area restaurants...

May 28, 2020
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