Summer is coming to a close, and while it might be a little late to book a last-minute vacation before the kids go back to school, you can still get a little R&R from your kitchen by visiting a local eatery during Carroll County Restaurant Week.
More than 30 restaurants are offering specials during the week, which continues through Sunday, Aug. 21. Participating establishments include classic favorites like Bud's at Silver Run and Liberatore's Ristorante in Eldersburg — the owners of which were instrumental in launching Restaurant Week five years ago — to newer spots like Habaneros Mexican Kitchen & Tequileria in Westminster and Flick's Pub in Taneytown.
Even better, the variety of choices ranges from a sweet treat to go with your morning cup of Joe at JeannieBird Baking Co. and a quick bite in the form of a Crabby Dog from Cryin' Johnnies in Mount Airy to homestyle cookin' at Bullock's Family Restaurant and finer dining at The County Cork Wine Pub in Eldersburg.
We encourage you to take a vacation from cooking dinner or packing a lunch and patronizing one of these establishments during the next few days.
Most locations will offer special prix fixe, or fixed price, menus ending in 16 cents (for 2016), including three-course dinners from $20.16 to $35.16, and lunch from as low as $7.16, while others will offer discounts and other specials. Many chefs will cook up something special just for Restaurant Week, so even if you have a favorite dish at your go-to spot, it's a chance to experience something new. Regular menu and kids menu items are still available, too, and menus and details can be found at www.carrollcountyrestaurantweek.com.
Ken Lurie of Bud's and Dante Liberatore of the eponymous restaurant started with a week in 2011 as a way to lure diners in during mid-August, traditionally a slow time for the business. Since then, the Carroll County Chamber of Commerce, Department of Economic Development and Tourism Office have partnered with the restaurants to help the week grow.
For the businesses, it's a good way to attract potential new customers. Consumers can use it as an opportunity to check out a new restaurant they've been meaning to give a try, or tantalize their tastebuds with something new at their favorite eatery at a great price.
Many of the restaurants participating are locally owned small businesses, so the week is also an opportunity to put money back into Carroll County's economy.