Verde Pizza Napoletana is open in Canton. The South Montford Avenue location was the home for years of Birches, and before that, the Wild Mushroom.
The dining room and bar, which formerly had a woodsy New England appearance, have been thoroughly remodeled. The redone interior, a sleek hybrid of European brasserie fixtures and midcentury American furnishings, is ready for its shelter magazine close-up.
The specialty at Verde is Neapolitan pizza, with toppings like prosciutto di Parma, imported buffalo mozzarella and wild mushrooms. The menu breaks down into salads and red and white pizzas. There are a few menu innovations worth noting. Most of the pizzas include the ingredient fior di latte mozzarella, which is simply good mozzarella made from cow's milk. And on the Pardrino pizza, along with tomato sauce, sopresatta, Gaeta olives, basil and extra virgin olive oil, is a Sicilian cheese I've never seen on a menu — Caciocavallo Ragusano.
The restaurant will be open Tuesday through Sunday for dinner and for lunch and dinner on weekends. Verde is at 641 S. Montford Ave.. For information, call 410-732-3000 or go to verdepizza.com.
Be their guests Four chefs, one mixologist, four courses, 12 beverages and one charitable foundation — sounds like a Heavy Seas Alehouse guest chef dinner.
The chefs the second time around are Dennis Marron (Poste Moderne Brasserie, Washington), Patrick "Opie" Crooks (Roy's), Alison Reed (Ripple Restaurant, Washington) and Matt Seeber (Heavy Seas Alehouse). Heavy Seas' Vince Cassino will pair each course with Heavy Seas beer, and Dan Searing (Room 11, Washington) will pair each course with a specialty cocktail. On the menu: porchetta "Carpaccio," New York strip and fried oysters, and for dessert, carrot cake and mascarpone cream cheese mousse with orange ginger marmalade and walnut brittle.
Tickets to the dinner are $100. The event benefits the Ulman Cancer Fund for Young Adults. Heavy Seas Alehouse is at 1300 Bank St. in Little Italy. For more information about the dinner, call 410-522-0850 or go to heavyseasalehouse.com
Food and books The annual Baltimore Book Festival returns to Mount Vernon this Friday through Sunday.
Headlining the Food for Thought stage at this year's festival will be Food Network personalities Doron Petersan ("Sticky Finger Sweets") and Jeffrey Saad ("Global Kitchen Without Borders") and bakers Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito, authors of "Baked: Our Ten Favorite Ingredients."
Local authors include former Baltimore Sun reporter Rob Kasper ("Baltimore Beer: A Satisfying History of Charm City Brewing") and Regina McCarthy ("Maryland Wine"), and the roster of chefs doing demonstrations includes Thomas Dunklin (B&O American Brasserie) and Chris Becker (Fleet Street Kitchen).
For a complete schedule of Baltimore Book Festival events, go to baltimorebookfestival.com
The final curtain Final details are still to be worked out, but a Potbelly sandwich shop appears to be headed for Midtown-Belvedere neighborhood. The Charles Street location would be the eighth in the Baltimore area for the Chicago-based franchise, which began in 1977 in a small antiques store that offered homemade sandwiches to its customers.
A new anything is usually good news for the young people of that neighborhood, but it's the exact location, 1201 N. Charles St., on the northeast corner of Charles and Biddle streets, that will interest an older generation of Baltimore diners.
Today, that address is the southern anchor of a ground-level retail strip that already includes a Starbucks, Chipotle and Tutti Frutti. But 1201 N. Charles St. was the longtime home of Danny's, a fine-dining restaurant that flourished under restaurateur Danny Dickman in the 1960s and 1970s.
The corner building that once housed Danny's has been remodeled, and no remnants of the old Danny's remain, inside or out.
Big sailor One-Eyed Mike's owner Michael Maraziti signed up the first members of the bar's Grand Marnier Club back in 2003, not long after opening the Bond Street tavern in Fells Point.
Nine years later, 2,000 names fill the membership rolls of the world's first Grand Marnier Club. Most of them are no doubt fans of the sticky bitter-orange liqueur, but surely some club members just like having their personal bottle displayed on the tavern's walls.
The celebration One-Eyed Mike's is planning for Sunday afternoon is so big that it's not being held in Fells Point at all.
Instead the grand celebration will be at Power Plant Live. Advance $35 tickets can be picked up at One-Eyed Mike's (706 S. Bond St., 410-327-0445) or purchased online at oneeyedmikes.com.