801 E. Fort Ave., (443) 708-1675, barliquorice.com
The spot at the corner of Fort Avenue and Heath Street in Federal Hill’s Riverside neighborhood is one of Charm City’s “cursed” locations. Before the newly minted Bar Liquorice opened there a few months ago, it was Lime, a short-lived tequila bar, and before that, a short-lived restaurant whose name we can’t even remember. But the narrow rowhouse turned drinkery Bar Liquorice seems like it will beat the curse. The bar’s got some great original cocktails (our favorites were the Downton Abbey, a Scotch cocktail made with organic ginger; and the Black Seal, essentially a dark and stormy with lime bitters), and it’s no slouch on the food front either. True to its namesake, there are apothecary jars full of dark, gourmet licorice wheels and glasses of Twizzlers, but make sure you try the pork Bahn Mi. This place is a great respite from the “red cup” joints that have unfortunately given the neighborhood a bad name. Here’s a reason to venture to Fed Hill again.