Dining Hall of Fame

806 N. Charles St., (410) 752-0311, helmand.com

It's hard to keep track of all the Helmand's Best of Baltimore awards: Over the years the Afghani dining room on Charles Street has won "Best First Date Restaurant," "Best Restaurant for Special Occasions," "Best Middle Eastern Restaurant" (multiple times), "Best Restaurant for Vegetarians" (multiple times), and, simply, "Best Restaurant" (multiple times). That it has remained among our favorites for so long is a testament to its unmatched combination of exquisite food (the kaddo bowrani, or pan-fried pumpkin, alone deserves a James Beard Award, an Oscar, a Nobel, and an Olympic gold), elegant dining room, and deeply charming service, all for truly shockingly reasonable prices. Baltimore is lucky to have such a dining institution.

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