Best Bar: The Wharf Rat

801 S. Ann St., (410) 276-8304,

The building that houses the Wharf Rat is said to have been a bar since the late 18th century. The Wharf Rat may not have the frozen-in-time feel of McSorley’s in New York, but the cozy confines, roaring fireplace in colder months, and maritime decorations do drip with history. It’s not hard to imagine a time when dusty old watermen and sailors would crowd in for a post-work beer. Nowadays, there are the small stoves behind the bar that the staff uses to somehow make a menu’s worth of food in cramped quarters, board games, a solid selection of decently priced craft brews, and a mug club for regulars. None of these things feels out of place (well, maybe the British phone booth stands out a little). Fells Point is ever-changing, and what’s so great about the Wharf Rat is it does an incredible job of balancing the old with the new.

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