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March 13, 2009

Next Tuesday's Top 10: the St. Patrick's Day Edition


I first gave this the headline "Spuds, spuds and more spuds."

But I don't actually like the word "spud" much. It sounds like it wouldn't taste very good. Still, it was a clue in the crossword I was doing this morning when I should have been making my lunch or doing my dreaded back exercises or something more productive.

That seemed to me a sign that we should do Great Restaurant Potato Dishes as next Tuesday's Top 10, the St. Patrick's Day Edition. (I'll take any sign I can get.) ...

We have to give David credit for first making this suggestion:

Top Ten Potato Dishes or Potatoe for Dan Quayle fans.

Posted by: David | March 6, 2009 9:43 PM

But the idea got several echoes later on under the post where I asked for help.

So potato dishes it is. Suggestions not only welcomed but begged for. And if you have any great potato photos, send them along, too. For some reason our photo archives are short on restaurant potato dishes except for french fries, which, I think we'll all agree, we've covered ad nauseum.

(Lloyd Fox/Sun photographer)

Posted by Elizabeth Large at 7:24 AM | | Comments (16)


I know it's sacrilege and an otherwise pretty ordinary dining experience, but the hashbrown casserole at Cracker Barrel is quite good.

An OT question - when are restaurants celebrating St. Patricks Day since it's inconvienently on Tuesday this year? Will it be this weekend or next weekend or maybe both?

Although I did suggest the topic I can't think of any restaurant potato dish that is better than an average one I've made at home, including and especially the ridiculously over-hyped duck fat fries at Salt which are bland and without distinction. The problem with those fries is that they are stripped of any potato or duck essence. The fries are thin, denuded and suspiciously uniform. The fat is rendered free of any duck flavor. I guess that's what you get with that kind of processed duck fat. The best potato dish: unpeeled thick potato slices roasted in my toaster oven and then finished in the pan that I made a duck breast in. Very ducky.

Oh my god I am soooooooo neurotic. I think that none of my suggestions are ever going to happen and then when one does I make a case to completely undermine it. Will someone please shoot me.

Well, I certainly know what the No. 1 restaurant potato dish on my list is now going to be. EL

Thrashers on the boardwalk in Ocean City.

Best use of the potato. Ever.

Well, I certainly know what the No. 1 restaurant potato dish on my list is now going to be. EL


The best potatoes I have eaten in the Baltimore area are the chips at Blue Stone in Timonium. The rest of their food is very ordinary, in fact I don't go there anymore, but the chips are excellent.

Here are my favorite potato dishes: Ale Mary’s assortment of tater tot dishes (cheesy tots, sloppy tots, loaded tots and crabby tots), Annabel Lee’s duck fat fries, Birches’ baked potato club (w/ 40 toppings), and Prime Rib’s potato skins.

MB reminded me, I always enjoy the tater tots at Golden West (though I suspect that's more for the school cafeteria memories than actual quality).

e W. (or should that have been Joyce W.?) -- the Baltimore St. Patrick's Day Parade will be this Sunday, the 15th, so you can expect that the celebration will take place all of this weekend (the 14th and 15th) as well as on Tuesday the 17th. Indeed, I suspect that most local watering holes actually would prefer not to have the 17th fall on the weekend, since that would mean one less day of revelry, and, therefore, one less day of pleasure-inducing cash register ka-chings.

Hey hmpstd - good call! Don't know what happened to the rest of my name. I agree I'm sure if the parade is Sunday, festivities indeed this weekend (and of course Tues as you've noted!)

MB--crabby tots? Don't they belong over at the Mommy Blog?

Best potato dish

In Cockeysville, at the Stil.

Their Irish Nachos!

The St. Patrick's Day parade in Delray Beach will happen later today. (On the Sabbath?????) I'll be on my way to Sun City Center, pausing to view as many alligators on the alley as I can.

By now you know that I am a fan of Ryan's Daughter, and they are very happy to sub a serving of champ for fries when I order a sandwich (usually Rosie's Reuban). What I like about it is that it is not over seasoned, not drowning in butter, but has a nice balance between greens and potatoes.

best use of the spud, Duck Fat Fries, can be had at Petit Louis, Abacrombie, and a few other places, I get duck fat at Wegmans and make 'em at home and follow them up with a call to my doctor for the following day

Potatoes are my favorite food. Here is my short list from places around town, in no particular order

home fries at Gertrudes (served with peppers and onions, what I know as potatoes o'brien)

potato skins at James Joyce and Prime Rib

potato soup at James Joyce (especially with their brown bread)

mashed potatoes at Mama's on Half Shell

roasted garlic potatoes at Samos (wow wow wow... and cheap!)

fries - Waterfront Hotel (thin) and Big Bad Wolf (thick) and bbq fries at Andy Nelsons (fat)

there used to be a baked potato place at Lexington Market where you could get one for a dollar... not sure if it's still there, I haven't been in the past year, but have fond memories

The Tater Tots at Golden West are terrific. So are the Loaded Fries at Della Rose's on The Avenue in White Marsh. It's a large order of French fries--easily enough for two--smothered in Cheddar cheese, bacon bits, and garlic (ranch?) sauce. It's a heart attack on a plate, but a friend and I allow ourselves to indulge about once a year.

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About this blog
Richard Gorelick was appointed The Baltimore Sun's restaurant critic in September 2010. Before joining the paper staff fulltime, he contributed freelance criticism and features articles about food to area and regional publications. Along the way, he dispatched for short-distance trucking companies, shilled for cultural non-profits, and assisted in cognitive neurology research – never the subject, always the control.

He takes restaurants seriously but not himself, and his favorite restaurant is the one you love, too.

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