Be-One Korean B.B.Q. Restaurant
2016 Maryland Ave., (410) 244-5600
$$, L, D
The smell of sizzling meat is exactly what you look for in Korean barbecue. Be-One delivers with the highly recommended B.B.Q. Set A: cha dol (brisket), galbi (beef ribs), bulgogi (marinated aged beef), joo mool luck (boneless ribs), and chicken bulgogi.
1729 Maryland Ave., (443) 708-5709, bottega1729.com
$$$, D, BYOB, R
This tiny (like 15-seats tiny) Station North restaurant is quite possibly the best dining in the city, so book a reservation when you can. Order the smoked goose—or, you know, whatever they make that day.
1818 N. Charles St., (410) 332-8422
$, L, D
The husband/wife team of chefs Eric and Barbara, Jamaica natives, serve up heaping platters of jerk chicken slathered in dark, rich gravy, along with all the fixings, for $8.50.
1910 N. Charles St., (410) 625-4848, thecrownbaltimore.tumblr.com
$, D, 10 p.m.
The city's best DIY performance space also features a menu of Asian-fusion food that includes things such as fried dumplings and bulgogi french fries. They're branching out too, recently adding items like Duckpin battered fried zucchini tacos and fried cheese migas tacos.
300 W. 30th St., (443) 869-5864, thedizzbaltimore.com
$$, L, D, BR, Out, 10 p.m.
A down-home neighborhood bar with great bar food and an old-fashioned rotating dessert case with killer pies and cakes? Sign us up. Breakfast on Sundays, and it's incredibly cheap.
133 W. North Ave., (410) 545-0444, joesquared.com
$$, L, D, Out, 10 p.m, DV
Joe Squared makes masterful square pizzas and serves good beer, but it does so much more than that. There are sandwiches, risottos, and salads—and it even has 10 complex flavors of chicken wings.
18 W. 20th St., (410) 837-5231
$$, L, D, 10 p.m.
We love Jong Kak. Sorry, everyone who eats there pretty much has to say this. One of several great Korean restaurants in town, it offers all your favorites. But go straight to the barbecue: It is cooked over hardwood charcoal.
Liam Flynn’s Ale House
22 W. North Ave., (410) 244-8447, pintsizepub.com
$$, L, D
Last year Liam Flynn's started offering Scottish and Irish bar food to go with its great booze offerings (it's one of the few places in town with a selection of cask ale). Go for one (or more) of its scotch eggs—there are three varieties to choose from—and its salmon sandwich.
Lost City Diner
1730 N. Charles St., (410) 547-5678, lostcitydiner.com
$$, D, Br, 10 p.m.
After a checkered past of openings and closings, Lost City's latest menu leans more consistently toward diner fare, plus the assortment of shakes, floats, and sundaes you'd expect from such a lavish-looking soda fountain.
2101 N. Charles St. (entrance on 21st Street), (410) 837-6033
$$, L, D
Mi Comalito specializes in Mexican, Salvadoran, and Honduran food, and it does all three as well as anyone else in town. Start with the pupusas. There are three kinds: queso, loroco (vine flowers with cheese), and revueltas (mixed beans, pork, and cheese).
Nak Won Restaurant
12 W. 20th St., (410) 244-5501, facebook.com/baltimorenakwon
$$, L, D, 10 p.m.
One of many Korean late-night spots within a few blocks of each other, Nak Won has noodle bowls and hot pots, but it bills its specialty as Korean BBQ and has a whole menu page of dishes to prove it.
2126 Maryland Ave., (410) 685-6237
$$, L, D, 10 p.m.
Nam Kang, which stays open till 4 a.m. nightly, has fabulous panchen and we love the kimchi jigae on a cold night.
Nancy by SNAC
131 W. North Ave., (410) 685-0038, stationnortharts.com/NANCY_BY_SNAC.html
$$, B, L, D, BYOB
Housed in the Maryland Institute College of Art's Fred Lazarus IV Center, this cafe features many of the American dishes with flair found at its sister restaurant down on North Charles Street, including a highly touted pulled pork sandwich.
The New Wyman Park Restaurant
138 W. 25th St., (410) 235-5100
$, B, L
Friendly, fast diner drawing locals for crispy fries with thick brown gravy and the delicious quarter-cut turkey club, with turkey roasted in-house.
227 W. 29th St., (410) 889-4444, papermoondiner24.com
$$, B, L, D, P, 10 p.m.
When people talk about Baltimore's "funkiness," they might be talking about Papermoon. You'd never find a place with this kind of wacky decor in Washington, D.C., that's for sure. Bonus: inventive shakes, diner fare, and communal service.
Parts & Labor
2600 N. Howard St., (443) 873-8887, partsandlaborbutchery.com
$$$, L, D, R
Part of Spike Gjerde's local restaurant empire, Parts & Labor is both a restaurant and butcher shop. You can shop for choice cuts of meat by day, and come back for dinner service to eat expertly cooked rib-eyes, filets, and more. Also enjoy salted meats and organ varieties.
Pen & Quill
1701 N. Charles St., (410) 601-3588, penandquill.net
$$$, D, R
The Karzai family took control of this prime real estate, following its short-lived relaunch as The Chesapeake, to open a new restaurant using both global and local flavors on its menu, which includes small plates, entrees, charcuterie and cheese, snacks, and desserts.
30 W. North Ave., (443) 602-7585, redemmas.org
$, B, L, D
The leftist collective has swanky digs in Station North, with bookshelves reaching the ceiling, its own coffee-roasting operation, and a menu with bagels, sandwiches, and more. There are plenty of vegetarian and vegan options, including a tofu bahn mi, tofurkey melt, and veggie powerhouse.
Red Parrot Asian Bistro
1707 N. Charles St., (410) 244-8330, redparrotasianbistro.com
$$, L, D
Pulling from China, Thailand, Korea, Vietnam, Malaysia, and Japan, the menu has a little something for everyone. For all you sushi lovers out there, Red Parrot has a whole page of options to choose from.
1723 N. Charles St., (410) 727-7732, sofiscrepes.com
$, L, D, Out
If you've ever eaten crepes on a Parisian street, stop in to any location of Sofi's (there are other outposts in the city in Belvedere Square and Fells Point) and, a few minutes later, you can be walking along the sidewalk, annoying all of your friends with your memoires de joie de vivre. Buy 'em a crepe and they won't mind.
Station North Arts Cafe
1816 N. Charles St., (410) 625-6440, stationnortharts.com
$$, B, L, D
An old stalwart of the neighborhood, this cafe and art gallery serves breakfast staples like French toast and Belgian waffles all day and boasts a lunch menu of hot dogs and more than a dozen sandwiches.