Top 10 Most Controversial Restaurants in Baltimore
The idea for this Top 10 started with a discussion of Golden West Cafe in Hampden. I felt like I was hearing two different restaurants being talked about: People either loved, loved, loved it or hated it, with very little in between. As one person pointed out, you could say the same of several places in Hampden; but I wanted to broaden the scope of this Top 10.
There are some places that just generate strong feelings both pro and con, I'm not sure why. (If you have any theories, I'd like to hear from you.) Anyway, here's my list of the 10 most divisive restaurants -- ones that could ruin marriages or cause friends to come to blows. After the names of the restaurants, I've put why people say they like them or hate them: ...
* Ambassador Dining Room in Tuscany/Canterbury. Love it: Good Indian food, wonderful setting and suave service. Hate it: Overpriced, small portions.
* Birches in Canton. Love it: Excellent New American cuisine. Hate it: Outrageous attitude of the owner and wait staff.
* G & M in Linthicum Heights. Love it: The best, biggest crab cake in the Baltimore area. Hate it: Overrated crab cake made from Asian crab meat.
* Golden West Cafe in Hampden. Love it: Where else can you get New Mexican food around here? And very kid friendly. Hate it: Too many pretentious rules about the food, lots of attitude from the staff. And very kid friendly.
* Morning Edition in Butchers Hill. Love it: Fabulous breakfasts, quirky setting. Hate it: Rude, slow service.
* Papermoon in Remington. Love it: Fantastic, original decor, good chow. Hate it: Bizarre, a little trashy and annoyingly precious.
* Petit Louis Bistro in Roland Park. Love it: Wonderful French food, authentic atmosphere, fine wine service. Hate it: Noisy, crowded, expensive for what you get.
* Sabatino's in Little Italy. Love it: Great Bookmaker salad, generous portions of good Italian-American food, friendly staff. Hate it: Terrible food or hit and miss because it's become such a tourist attraction.
* Sip & Bite in Canton. Love it: Cheap, decent, quick diner fare, late-night menu. A Baltimore institution. Hate it: Grouchy servers, needs a good cleaning.
* Tio Pepe in Mount Vernon. Love it: Spanish food in generous quantities, Old World service, festive atmosphere, sangria -- what's not to love? Hate it: Food isn't as good as its reputation, crowded basement rooms, the staff plays favorites.
(Photo of Papermoon by Mauricio Rubio/Sun photographer)