reopened with the original menu intact and locally sourced ingredients.

The Woman’s Industrial Kitchen

333 N. Charles St., (410) 244-6450,

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We were swooning before we even sat down in the cozy Woman’s Industrial Kitchen. The restaurant, which sits in the back of a gift shop, is all diner charm with none of the kitsch. The floors are black-and-white checkered, the tables laminated with photos of influential Maryland women, and the walls lined with old photographs. The restaurant originally opened 130 years ago, and closed in 2002. (Various ventures have since come and gone in the space.) Recently Irene Smith, the high-energy force behind the Souper Freak soup truck, reopened the place, with the original menu intact. The ingredients are mostly locally sourced—as they surely were a century ago—and where else can you find such charmers as Waldorf salad and deviled eggs on a lunch menu? We had the Bridge Club Sampler ($8), which consisted of delicious, delicately spiced sweet potato casserole, creamy broccoli and cheese casserole, and some stellar mac ‘n’ cheese, clearly made with quality cheese. We also sampled the vegetable potpie ($9) and found it to be sweet, stew-like comfort food, packed with veggies. The Charlotte Russe cake ($4), an airy confection made with gelatin but with a mousse-like mouth feel, topped it all off. The servers were über-friendly, and the food so comforting we could have cried. Next time we won’t fear the tomato aspic.

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