Baltimore Sun

Cafe Kabab spices up Catonsville

As my time as interim blog hostess grows short, I find myself reflecting on what I could have done differently.

Could I have written apolitical Top Tens? Surely. Foreseen that celiac sufferers wouldn't want to hear what extra gluten does for my pizza dough? Perhaps. Been kinder to a hapless "Top Chef" contestant? Nah.

But the question that really nags: Could I have done more to advance my personal dining agenda, namely: to promote and improve the Catonsville restaurant scene?


Sure, I've blabbed on endlessly about Atwater's. Noted the existence of Catsonville Gourmet, the opening of Regions. I've even posted about Grilled Cheese & Co., though I'm not sure that's taking us in the right direction. But I've neglected to report at least one Catonsville dining development. Until now.

Cafe Kabab opened several months ago at 736 Frederick Road, in a shopping center with a Friendly's restaurant. It offers Pakistani dishes, including kabab platters, biryani, curries and masalas.


A sign out front claims that Cafe Kabab is Catonsville's No. 1 kabab restaurant. Were it not for Kabab Hut up on Route 40, I would ask: Is there a No. 2? Even if it can boast a whopping two kabab joints, and an Indian place on Frederick Road, Catonsville is hardly a hotbed of ethnic dining. Which explains my selfish desire for Cafe Kabab to succeed.

I had lunch there a couple weeks ago with my husband and children, a friend and his little boy. The restaurant, a clean but no-frills place, had been closed for Ramadan. The man behind the counter, whom we took to be the owner, warned us the kitchen would be a little slower than usual as a result.

The wait was very long, but a free round of mango-yogurt drinks helped. And when the food finally arrived, the delay was forgotten. The naan was fresh as could be. It wasn't as rich as the Indian version we love; it was closer to a pizza dough. But it was fluffy and piping hot and served with a mild yogurt sauce. Our chicken and lamb kababs were pleasantly spicy and tender. The veggie platter had a golden potato patty that was quickly devoured.

For all that, we were the only people in the place.

Lunch specials start at $6.99. Nearly all of the platters are $9.99.

if you live in the area, and you'd like to have dining options more interesting than Friendly's, please give Cafe Kabab a try so it doesn't go away.

Cafe Kabab lamb chops. Photo courtesy of Cafe Kabab