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Pastries are the name of the game at Vacaro's, where they specialize in sweet treats and have perfected the art of baking. They only do dessert, and they do it all – from homemade gelato to some of the most deliciously decadent cakes and pies you've ever tasted. The cannoli is legendary, and the tiramisu is equally perfect. Fine fresh-brewed coffee is the ideal complement. Enjoy your indulgence in the dining room, or take something home to savor later.

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This traditional tavern-style restaurant takes you back in time, with dark woods, nostalgic prints on the walls and graceful wrought iron accents. The lengthy menu offers great options for any meal of the day at this longstanding local favorite, but the breakfasts are particularly noteworthy. Favorites include steak and eggs, with sirloin club steak and three eggs any style, served with hash browns and an English muffin. Or try a crab omelet made with jumbo lump crabmeat and cream sauce and served with long john potatoes and garlic bread.

Read more about Burke's Restaurant and Cafe →


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This authentic New York-style deli knows how to make a sandwich. It's not the flimsy sort of sandwich found at some delis but a real stick-to-your-ribs meal: hearty bread piled with high-quality meats and cheeses, served with the requisite zesty pickle spear. A local favorite for years, Attman's also serves Jewish specialties like knishes, latkes, and kosher hot dogs. Plus, the corned beef specialties have become local legends. The simple decor doesn't warrant any honors, but the old-fashioned vibe and fresh, tasty sandwiches more than make up for it.

Read more about Attman's Delicatessen →


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Faidley Seafood
Photo courtesy of Tamar Alexia Fleishman


Faidley's, located minutes from the Inner Harbor in Lexington Market, is a crab cake landmark. The building itself has been around since 1886. Eat-In is done at stand-up tables where diners can enjoy other Faidley seafood favorites such as raw oysters, shrimp, and clams before heading to the main attraction. Their award-winning crab cakes have been featured in various publications as well as on the Food Network in a crab cake show-down where they came out on top. Patrons can choose between regular or jumbo lump crab cakes where they're fried in minutes and accompanied by any number of side dishes. Visitors interested in enjoying Faidley's crab cakes at home can also have them shipped.

Local Expert tip: Don't short-change yourself by ordering anything less than the jumbo lump crab cake. This is Faidley's work-of-art.

Read more about Faidley Seafood →


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Roland Park


Located in Belvedere Square Market, this popular kitchen emphasizes natural, homegrown ingredients. Hearty sandwiches are served on delicious from-scratch house breads, such as walnut cumin, kalamata olive, cherry pecan and peasant wheat, and the menu also features a selection of homemade soups. The cozy interior offers counter seating, and all items are available for takeout.

Read more about Atwater's →




Stainless steel pillars, crimson bar stools, and red, orange and yellow plastic chairs accent this contemporary space. The kitchen's small plates allow guests to make a meal of a variety of savory Mediterranean dishes. Select your favorites from an assortment that might include goat cheese-stuffed red peppers, baby lamb chops, fried calamari, and grape leaves stuffed with aromatic rice, pine nuts and parsley.

Read more about Kali's Mezze →


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Hampden


A casual cafe with a downhome feel, this restaurant was once a hardware store. It no longer sells hammers and socket sets; instead, it serves all-American comfort food in an appealingly nostalgic atmosphere. Wonder where they got the name? You'll get it when the waitresses greet you with "Hi hon!" Come in for a homestyle breakfast any weekday, or enjoy the extensive brunch on Saturday and Sunday. Sky-high beehive hairdo optional!

Read more about Cafe Hon →


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Roland Park


This is a diner with an independent streak. It doesn't abide by the classic chrome-and-vinyl formula, but instead has a dining room full of fun and funky accents like classic toys and elaborately dressed mannequins lurking in the corners. The menu is more traditional though, offering pancakes, challah French toast, and egg sandwiches. Other times of the day, opt for the meatloaf or fried chicken – just like your mother used to make! The colorful atmosphere and tasty comfort food attract a diverse crowd, from yuppies to punk rockers.

Read more about Paper Moon Diner →


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Mt Vernon


Offering everything hip in the world of dining, this open, multi-level cafe and bar features sushi, gelato, all-day breakfast, paninis, wraps and more. The chrome bar, surrounded with stools and additional high-top tables, is perfect for mingling over drinks ... an amazing variety of drinks. Fourteen specialty cocktails, wines available by the glass or bottle, domestic and imported brews and even a cool selection of sake.

Read more about XS →


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Mt Vernon


Head to this upscale restaurant for the best in flavorful North Indian cuisine. Spicy but not overwhelming, each dish shows a delicate balance of flavors that keeps locals returning for more. If you come for lunch, opt for the tasty, affordable buffet. For dinner, try the classic lamb curry or chicken tikka, both redolent with coriander and cumin, or sample specialties like vegetable fritters in creamy yogurt or any of the excellent, buttery masala dishes. Relax amid the muted colors of the elegant dining room while digging into indulgent Indian ice cream made with pistachios and rosewater.

Read more about Akbar →


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