The traveling locavore: Waterfront Kitchen in Fells Point, Baltimore

Confession. On small business Saturday, I didn’t infuse any money into the local South Jersey economy. I did, however, infuse quite a bit into the Baltimore economy. I met my friend Susan in Fells Point, a Baltimore neighborhood on the waterfront with lots of small independent shops, restaurants, and pubs (about 120 of them). I did a little Christmas shopping in some of the boutique clothing and home stores.

Susan and I stopped for lunch at Waterfront Kitchen, a seed-to-plate restaurant that sources ingredients as seasonally and locally as possible. They partner with Living Classroom’s BUGS program for inner city school children and when possible use produce grown from BUGS greenhouse and gardens that are just around the corner from the restaurant.

The wine menu was incredibly detailed. It was arranged by winery with a description of the winery or the winemaker and then a list of the specific wines they carry from each winery. I’ve never seen a wine list like that before, and if Susan and I weren’t so incredibly chatty with each, I probably would have taken the time to read the descriptions thoroughly and ask questions.

I’ll take you through my lunch in pictures.

Vespercello cocktail

We started off with cocktails. I love ordering cocktails before noon. It feels so decadent. I had the Vespercello – Belvedere vodka, Tanqueray Ten, Lillet, and limoncello. Their cocktail menu was small, but had a nice variety of house infusion cocktails and seasonal cocktails. Susan had the house infused Lady Maryland – Bosc pear, Granny Smith apple, and lemon-infused vodka with bay leaf syrup.

Fried Green Maryland Tomatoes

So many of the appetizer options were appealing. We hemmed and hawed between the cheese board with three local cheeses or the Fried Green Maryland Tomatoes. We eventually settled on the tomatoes, realizing it was probably our last chance to have local tomatoes in anything until next July. The tomatoes were served with goat cheese, arugula, red onion and Banyuls vinaigrette.

The Waterfront Burger

We decided to go meaty for lunch. We ordered both the Waterfront Burger, made with fresh ground Piedmont Ridge grass-fed beef, greens, grilled onion, tarragon and tarragon tomato jam served on brioche (with an addition of blue cheese) and the Steak Sandwich made with veal flank, housemade steak sauce, grilled onion, arugula,and blue cheese served on ciabatta. Both were very good, but I, being the burger lover I am, enjoyed the Waterfront Burger more.

Other options that looked good to us were the Smoked Trout and Warm Brussels Sprout Salad, the Herbed Autumn Vegetable Pot Pie with Crab, and the Venison Meatball Sandwich. I really hope next time I dine there the pot pie with crab is still on the menu.

Waterfront Kitchen was Susan’s choice, and as always, she chose well. If you’re traveling to Baltimore, I recommend stopping this restaurant that supports the local producers in its area for lunch, dinner or weekend brunch.

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