Box Hill Pizzeria


2915 Emmorton Road, Box Hill Square, Abingdon. Hours: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sundays to Tuesdays, 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Wednesdays and Thursdays, 11 a.m. to midnight Fridays and Saturdays. (410) 515-3662 or (410) 569-1788.

It's the proverbial carryout: a plain storefront in a strip shopping center on a busy street. Even pushing open the glass plate door doesn't reveal any surprises inside. There are a few arcade games, several ho-hum tables and chairs, and the usual cooking aromas -- fried onions and sizzling french fries.

But this is an eatery that makes an impact with its food. Sure, it's the standard fare -- pizza and subs with a few extras thrown in -- but everything I've ordered has been tasty and well-prepared.

My favorite is the shrimp salad sub ($5.45 for a junior size, $8.50 for the large). If I'm having a bad day, this is my comfort food. Big chunks of shrimp lightly tossed with mayo on the freshest of rolls are enough to dispel the cares of the world.

Another palate pleaser is the crab cake platter ($11.75 or $12.75 for a healthy broil). OK, the price is steep for a carryout, but these are two crab cakes to remember -- plump and made with jumbo lump. Add the french fries, cole slaw and garlic bread, and you've got quite a meal. The fried shrimp platter ($6.25) is another winner with six fat shrimp in a golden, crunchy coating.

If you're really hungry, try one of the Italian specialties. The homemade lasagna with four giant meatballs ($5.75) will satisfy any craving for spicy tomato sauce and pasta -- and save you a trip to Little Italy.

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