Don't worry, Dooby's will be here soon. That's the word from Dooby himself.
Dooby's is the long-long-awaited Mount Vernon cafe from Phil Han, the Gilman alumnus whose childhood nickname is now plastered on the Park Plaza building, which has been without a restaurant tenant since the early-morning fire in December 2010 that effectively closed the building.
Both My Thai and Indigma, which occupied the space where Dooby's is going, have reopened elsewhere. The old Donna's space is now an interior design firm.
Han said the cafe, which was originally scheduled for a spring opening, will now open around Labor Day. But Mount Vernon residents won't have to wait that long for a sip of Dooby's espresso or taste of its pastries and sandwiches.
On Saturday, Han will open a preview version of Dooby's in the lower-level Park Plaza space that used to be an imported rug store. Han is calling this space, which is entered on Madison Street, The Hatch.
The Hatch will introduce Dooby's coffee program and a sampling of the food that will be served in the cafe.
Think pastries like pancetta Gruyere scones, blueberry muffins with passion fruit glaze. and "toast & jam," a duck-fat brioche with orange-blossom butter and berry jam; sourdough sandwiches with Cambodian chicken salad or tomato, mozzarella and pesto, and snacks like pho-spiced peanut brittle.
Once Dooby's occupies its permanent home on the ground-level space, The Hatch will become an incubator space for outside entrepreneurs, kind of a permanent "pop-up space," with a new concept rolling in every few months or so for a tryout.
The Hatch will open at 7 a.m. weekdays and 8 a.m. weekends. The entrance is at 4 W. Madison St. For information, call 410-702-5144 or go to doobyscoffee.com.
Teatime for Little Italy Remember the Old Waverly? For a baker's-dozen years, Donna Beth Joy Shapiro ran the Old Waverly History Exchange & Tea Room out of a Victorian frame house in Charles Village.
After Shapiro moved out in 2001, the tearoom continued on with a new name and different ownership. But Shapiro kept the Old Waverly name and her recipes for raisin scones, rosemary shortbread and rugelach. Now she's bringing them all back, in a revised version that Shapiro is calling the Old Waverly Tea Room & Academy of Home Arts.
The revived Old Waverly will occupy a long-shuttered commercial space on Little Italy's High Street.
Shapiro, a sometime contributor to The Baltimore Sun, said the new version will feature, in addition the old favorites, bread baked in a wood-fired brick oven and a classroom space where she will offer home economics classes under the Academy of Home Arts name.
The popular afternoon tea service from the original location will be served during classes at the academy, Shapiro said.
Shapiro said she intends to operate the bakery, cafe and academy under kosher supervision.
A time for cider We've been loving the new generation of hard ciders. We're not alone. It's cider's time. Again.
The Maryland Wineries Association will host a tasting event Thursday featuring five Maryland cider and mead producers. Locapour — Drink Local will include food vendors, live music and family activities.
The participating cider and mead producers are Great Shoals Winery (Princess Anne), Millstone Cellars (Monkton), Distillery Lane Ciderworks (Jefferson), Linganore Winecellars (Mount Airy) and Orchid Cellar Winery (Middletown).
Locapour — Drink Local is 4 p.m.-9 p.m. at the Baltimore County Center for Maryland Agriculture and Farm Park, 1114 Shawan Road, Cockeysville. Tasting passes are $20 in advance and $25 at the entrance. Nontasting passes are $10. A complimentary shuttle will run between the Hunt Valley light rail stop and the event site.
For information, call 410-252-9463.