Cafe Zen

Cafe Zen (NOAH SCIALOM / June 16, 2014)

 

Atwater’s

Belvedere Square Market, 529 E. Belvedere Ave., (410) 323-2396 (and various other area locations), atwaters.biz

$, B, L, D, P, Out

A great spot for sandwiches made with fresh bread, delicious soups (always with vegetarian and vegan options), and one of the best glasses of iced tea you’ll find in all of Charm City.

Café Zen

438 E. Belvedere Ave., (410) 532-0022,cafezen.us

$$, L, D

Baltimore’s Chinese food scene is kind of hurting, but Café Zen is the exemplar of what we’d like to see. They use tasty, fresh ingredients when preparing menu staples you’d find just about anywhere, but they also add a lot of creative choices.

This is a great place to go and pick up a bottle if you’re in a hurry, but the menu offers plenty of reasons to stick around to munch on a pizza or sampler plate. Pair your wine with the cheese sampler, or your beer with a house-baked pretzel that comes with shallot-tarragon drawn butter.

Neopol Savory Smokery

Belvedere Square Market, 529 E. Belvedere Ave., (410) 433-7700, neopolsmokery.com

$$, L, D, Br, P, Out

Smoked seafood. Smoked meats. Smoked vegetables and tofu. If you got it, Neopol will smoke it, and often with delicious results. Don’t sleep on their brunch.

Ryan’s Daughter

Belvedere Square, 600 E. Belvedere Ave., (410) 464-1000, rdirishpub.com

$$, L, D, Br, P, Out, 10 p.m.

A traditional Irish pub that includes all the menu staples: shepherd’s pie, fish and chips, and so forth. If you’d simply like to plop down for a pint, you can do that too. Bonus: The mayor’s a regular and can often be spotted in a booth.

Zen West

5916 York Road, (410) 323-3368, zen-west.com

$$, L, D, Br, Out

All your Tex-Mex favorites, served up in a setting that evokes a roadside joint off Route 66. Perfectly suitable for game-watching and beer-drinking.