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May 20, 2008

The next Fab Five Friday

I rarely review bars in the 'burbs.

So many bars have been renovated and reopened in Baltimore proper, it's hard enough for me to just cover the city -- let alone the suburbs.

I want to try and make amends this week.

What are the best all-around non-chain bars in the suburbs?

Since I don't know that many, I'm going to need plenty of input.

Fill me in.

(Photo of An Poitin Stil from Sun archives)  

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Posted by Sam Sessa at 9:47 AM | | Comments (28)
Categories: Fab Five Fridays


My favorite bar in the 'burbs is DeSantis' in Perry Hall. Reasonably priced drinks, good local crowd, and they serve Matthew's pizza!!!

Dead Freddies on Harford Road.

Also, can't go wrong with the Crease in Towson, if you are under 21.

Red Brick Station in White Marsh

Phoenix Emporium on Main St Ellicott City. Sometimes live music and a great beer list.

Go up the street from there to Judge's Bench. Very casual place with cheep beer and pub grub.

Charles Village Pub in Towson: old school photos of the Baltimore Colts on the walls, a back patio and at least one fistfight per night. Also, you can never forget the classic bar smell of chlorine bleach and vomit.


The selected photo makes it look like your topic is haunted eateries and bars, or at least ones with a historic past.

If you're going to get further from downtown, maybe you should consider covering some Bed and Breakfasts where to spend the weekend. I think a nice idea for the summer retreats.

Iamps! (Catonsville)

The Shark's Tooth in Brooklyn Park. They literally have a shark's head coming out of the front of the building. Much like its counterparts inside the city limits further north up route 2 (your neck of the woods) you will always find an eclectic crowd ranging from toothless old men to Towson State students. Its a funny spot to visit.

I also like G.L. Shacks in Catonsville. Its a nice mix from the neighborhood with people ranging from thier late 20s to thier early 50s. Plus sometimes they even have my guilty pleasure ... karaoke, whoohoo!

Last, but not least, comes the Crack Pot where you can alternatively be afraid to walk to your car alone or feel like you are in a Towson prep school re-union. Either way the crab dip, crab cakes and steamed crabs are ALWAYS good :-) FYI: If you must venture into Towson proper then your best bet is to stick with Souris' or the Kent ... they have the lowest ratio of meatheads to human beings in the area.


When I lived in Towson best bets were usually the Kent, the Crease, or RecRoom

When I stay in friends and I usually start at Annabells then hit Tiber River and end up the night in the Batskellar at Ellicott Mills


Souris' is the best in Towson. The old bar is classic, and the 3 for $4 special is great. The Crease is a classic too.

Isn't Dead Freddies in the city? Or they right on the border? I always considered it in the Hamilton vicinity, but could be wrong.

Haven't been in a year or so, but I always like Stone Cellar in Ellicot City.

And I am forced to 2nd The Shark's Tooth, and another Brooklyn Park favorite, Maynards.

There's no way you can include CVP after the Celine post from the last FFF...the combination of the two will bring flooding and torrential rain to the City of Baltimo.... oh wait that already.....oh.

GMan, I think it is right outside the city limits. If not, then what about the Harford House? Best dive bar not in the city. Cash only though.

Racer's - Harford Road - a ton of different beers on tap, soccer on the big screen, and hard pretzels and peanuts for free...and one time the bartender sold me homemade beef jerkey that was awesome

You have to include DELLAROSE'S the best place to watch the ravens or terps(tony dellarose himself on the bar with his speeches)

thats a tough one....there are so many

Crack Pot, deff. gets a vote. Rail drinks priced at $2.10 and they pour it like a $5 drink.

In Towson, out of all the terrible bars surrounding it, I have NEVER had a bad time at the Crease. The staff has never given me anything less than 90% service at anytime.

If you're uptowards Cockeysville/Timonium, then the Chared Rib is your best bet. Don't get me wrong, the out door section at High Tops is tempting, but running across York at 2 a.m. because you had to park in the industrial complex, just isn't worth it. Also, if it's a pay friday, you might as well get sauced, sing karaoke and eat a rack of amazing ribs at the Chared Rib. You really can't beat it.

Dead Freddies is allright, but there are so many meatheads in there on a consistent basis, that you could put them all into sausage casings, and no one would question it.

Love it or hate it, Padonia Station in Cockeysville has to be on the list. Huge menu, ridiculous number of tv's, "beer of the day" specials and live music on weekends...I don't know specifics but they've been on a few "Best Sportsbar in America" lists

Riverwatch in Middle River

Definitely Racer's on Harford Road, great beer bar and when I want to feel like an old pervert I like to go to Della Roses in White Marsh to look at the young girls. Nice!!!!

I, for one, hate Padonia Station. Do they still charge cover on Friday and Saturday nights? And their band schedule has been the same for about 5 years.

GDA - I think a post on B and Bs would be terrific


i don't know TS, what if they provided adequate fox hunting grounds?

Why leave town to fox hunt? Try walking by Magerks with a hot pizza, 12 pack, and promise of a roof deck hot tub...then the foxes chase you.


TS & Allan,

Gee, I thought this was good idea for guys who already caught their fox, but the clever ones can adapt.


You assume we'd actually be after clever foxes. This is wrong. The dumb ones, are the ones that usually do end up thinking I'm secret agent Maxwell Power, and this is my last night on earth.

Stupid commie space nazis! Why can't they just live in peace!!

I-83 North to Timonium Road. Timonium Road to York, left on York.
First place you will come to is Hightopps, have a cold one on the deck. Then cross the street without moving to the car and have a B&T at The Stil. Get back in the car and drive up to Padonia Road and have one at Padonia Station. Get back in car and proceed to Towne Tavern just before Warren Road (best hole in the wall in Timonium, and a band EVERY NIGHT). Finish beer and make way back to Padonia Road, make right towards I-83, but have last nightcap at Five (Christopher Daniel). A nice night and you did all that within a 2-1/2 mile radius.

Ben Folds V,

Are you trying to get Sam a DWI or a DUI? Sheesh! No, I'm not a cop...just a (concerned) friend.

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About Erik Maza
Erik Maza is a features reporter at the Baltimore Sun. He writes for several sections of the Sun paper and contributes weekly columns on music and nightlife. He also writes and edits the Midnight Sun blog. He often covers entertainment, business, and the business of entertainment. Occasionally, he writes about Four Loko, The Block, the liquor board, and those who practice "simulated sex with a potted palm tree." Before The Sun, he was a reporter at the Miami New Times. He's also written for Miami magazine, the Orlando Sentinel, the Sarasota Herald Tribune and the Gainesville Sun. Got tips? Gripes? Pitches? He's reachable at Click here to keep up with the dumb music he's listening to.

Midnight Sun covers Baltimore music, live entertainment, and nightlife news. On the blog, you'll find, among other things, concert announcements, breaking news, bars closings and openings, up-to-date coverage of crime in nightlife, new music, round-the-clock coverage of Virgin Mobile FreeFest, handy guides on bars staying open past 2 a.m. on New Year's Eve and those that carry Natty Boh on draft. Recurring features include seven-day nightlife guides, Concert News, guest reviews of bars and concerts, Wednesday Corkboard, and photo galleries, as well as reader-submitted photos. Thanks for reading.

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