A couple of months ago I asked readers on my blog, Dining@Large, to help me come up with a list of 100 Things Every Foodie Should Do in Baltimore. The only rule was that they be quintessentially Baltimore (and by Baltimore I meant Baltimore and the surrounding area). It wasn't enough to say "eat a crab cake." They had to be more specific.
I got 150 comments, some with multiple suggestions. They were from people who have lived in Baltimore all their lives and others who have discovered what's new and great in the city. Some are serious, some are simply fun. I tried to include a mix of both.
I got so many ideas that there were more than I could use. If you want more, you can find all of them at baltimoresun.com/foodie100.
I tried to keep the suggestions pretty much in the contributors' voices to give you a flavor of the list online. I'd like to credit all of them, but there were simply too many. You'll find their names, or at least their user names, under the blog post itself.
And if we left something off that should be on? Please sign on and post your suggestion.
1. Have a jumbo lump crab cake from Faidley's on a Saltine.
2. Pick steamed hard shells at Mr. Bill's Terrace Inn in Essex.
3. Eat Bertha's mussels.
4. Drink a Natty Boh.
5. Snack on a Berger's cookie.
6. Put marshmallow on your snowball.
7. Split Maryland beaten biscuits and put some thin slices of ham in them.
8. Serve sauerkraut with your turkey.
9. Get a chicken box (fried wings, western fries, dinner roll) from a Baltimore City public market.
10. Maybe the chicken box should be from Tyrone's?
11. Lake trout. And for those of us who watched "The Wire," have a grape soda with it.
12. Breakfast at Blue Moon Cafe down in Fells Point.
13. Corned beef on rye at Attman's.
14. Chiapparelli's house salad.
15. Knock back a goblet of Resurrection Ale at Brewer's Art.
16. Take a Sunday morning stroll through the JFX Farmer's Market.
17. Thrasher's french fries from the boardwalk in Ocean City.
18. Have a Black Eyed Susan at the Preakness.
19. Chow down on a pit beef sandwich at Boog's during an O's game.
20. Shop for shoes and chocolate at Ma Petit Shoe in Hampden.
21. Have a soft crab sandwich on white bread.
22. Eat a box of Rheb's buttercreams. Not at one sitting, of course ... on the other hand, why not?
23. Order a Tio Pepe sangria (red). It contains fruit, so it counts as food!
24. Polish sausage from one of the two Ostrowski shops.
25. German sausage from Binkert's
26. Fisher's popcorn downy ocean, hon!
27. Sunday brunch on the terrace at Ambassador Dining Room, an atypical setting for an Indian restaurant.
28. Get peach cake from Woodlea Bakery.
29. Eat the pumpkin appetizer at the Helmand.
30. Eat a Wockenfuss caramel apple! Mmmmm.
31. Thin crust pizza! Iggies and Joe Squared.
32. Savory muffins at Red Canoe in Lauraville.
33. Try some of the special flavors from Taharka Bros. (formerly Sylvan Beach) ice cream and Pitango Gelato.
34. Make fun of the hipsters at Golden West and Rocket to Venus in Hampden.
35. Have a special occasion dinner at Charleston. Ask Chef Cindy Wolf to fix what she thinks is best that night.
36. Change your mind about vegan/vegetarian food at Liquid Earth.
37. Try the charcuterie at Clementine.
38. Macaroni and cheese with bittersweet chocolate from Jack's Bistro.
39. Throw in a shrimp salad from Kibby's and/or Mary Mervis.
40. Smith Island Cake, but only from Sugarbakers.
41. Gorge yourself on the Monday night all-you-can-eat at Vaccaro's.
42. Discuss a bottle of wine with Tony Foreman at Cinghiale.
43. Eat roasted vegetables at Donna's ... wearing black.
44. Veal Chop at Da Mimmo.
45. Bookmaker salad at Sabatino's.
46. Get a crab cake and a lemon/peppermint stick at the Flower Mart. Isn't a fabulous crab cake, but even an average crab cake in Baltimore is better than anywhere else!
47. Order any sandwich at Trinacria. But no calling ahead to order like I do. You must wait in line for the full effect.
48. Order the popcorn and deviled eggs at Woodberry Kitchen. Before your appetizers, not in lieu of.
49. Have lunch on the patio at Sanders Corner overlooking the Loch Raven Reservoir.
50. Head to Carroll County for the best cream of crab soup at Smokey's BBQ on Liberty Road.
51. Stop at DiPasquale's in Highlandtown for their Italian and meatball subs.
52. Fried chicken livers from the Lexington Market.
53. Bagel with lox and cream cheese or apricot spread from Greg's.
54. Sit at the bar at Cinghiale and order anything. Talk to Rob about wine when Tony isn't in town.
55. Tamales from the food truck on Broadway.
56. Coddies on a cracker from a rowhouse bar.
57. Wander aisles of exotic produce - lychees! jackfruit! Indian eggplant! - at H Mart or Lotte Plaza in Catonsville. Eat some yummy bi bim bap or udon soup at the food court and then pick up a beautiful fresh whole fish for dinner before you head home.
58. Go to a bull/oyster roast or crab/shrimp feast at any number of Baltimore venues as long as you go to at least one at a V.F.W. hall, American Legion, Steelworkers Hall, fire hall, state park, etc.
59. Prime rib at the Prime Rib.
60. Greenberg Potato Skins from Prime Rib.
61. How about the fried green pepper rings at Gunnings!
62. You have to get a Popular Mozzarella Pie from Matthew's Pizza!
63. A baloney-wrapped hot dog from Attman's.
64. Pit beef from anywhere without a door.
65. Late night dinner at the Bel-Loc Diner.
66. Eat a "Tour of Samos" at Samos in Greektown (Greek salad, tzatziki and pita, kalamari, spinach pie, chicken souvlaki, dolmades, lamb chops, garlic shrimp, gyro, roasted potatoes).
67. Krispy Kreme Bread Pudding at Ale Mary's
68. Eat anything on the menu at Andy Nelson's.
69. Gravy fries.
70. Chicken salad from Graul's Market!
71. Old-fashioned Maryland stuffed ham.
72. OTTERBEIN'S COOKIES!!!!!!!!!!!
73. Raw beef and onion sandwich with raw yellow onion and salt and pepper on fresh rye bread (or pumpernickel).
74. Buy a crepe at Sofi's and enjoy it while watching a movie at the Charles.
75. Naron candy.
76. Polish dog with "the works" at Polock Johnny's.
77. Italian cold cut sub at Pastore's in Towson.
78. WOCKENFUSS CANDIES!!!!!!!!!!
79. Order the chocolate-chili bread pudding at the Blue Agave.
80. Have a picnic at Fort McHenry.
81. Any sandwich from Eddie's in Roland Park.
82. String bean rolls at Cafe Zen.
83. Garlic fries at Brewer's Art.
84. Oysters and beer at Cross Street Market!
85. Coffee from Zeke's.
86. Smoked platter from Neopol at Belvedere.
87. Go to the Wine Market on a Monday night and enjoy a neighborhood discount (extended to all diners).
88. Have an ice cream that contains vegetables at Dominion Ice Cream. [Ed.'s note: Now relocated to Hampden.]
89. Have Old Bay on things other than seafood. For instance, corn on the cob, potato salad, coleslaw.
90. Margarita in a hubcap from Nacho Mama's.
91. Take the Clipper City brewery tour.
92. Have a Black Eyed Susan cupcake at Charm City Cupcakes. It's one of my favorite things about Baltimore!
93. Get fruit and veggies from an a-rab.
94. Sip 'n Bite.
95. Sip a Bloody Mary with an Old Bay rimmer. I only see this done at Baltimore restaurants.
96. Enjoy a meal at Salt.
97. Eat the Berger cookie pie at Dangerously Delicious Pies in Federal Hill. A new tradition built on the old.
98. Mary Sue Easter Eggs.
99. Eat sushi in Towson.
100. Wiener schnitzel, red cabbage, and more at Eichenkranz in Highlandtown. The last traditional German food in the city.