Visitors to the Baltimore-Washington Corridor have their choice of restaurants. There are many national chains, but local favorites offer a special treat to those seeking a different dining experience. If you’re visiting Maryland between Baltimore and Washington, D.C., you’ll find several locally owned restaurants with good food at reasonable prices to fit your budget.
Barbecue lovers should check out Branded 72 in Rockville. Formerly known as O’Brien’s Pit Barbecue, Branded 72 is off the beaten path but worth the trip. They smoke the meats over hickory wood in an enclosed pit for at least 16 hours, resulting in incredibly tender beef, poultry, pork, and fish. Order the hand-cut fries or check out some of the other menu items; the sauces, sides, and desserts are all homemade. For the most variety, try the all-you-can-eat brunch available on Sundays.
If you’re in the area on a Thursday, Friday, or Saturday, and you’re willing to do takeout, stop by the Dutch Country Farmers Market in Laurel. After checking out all the delicious offerings–including free samples–consider getting a chicken from Yoder’s BBQ. If a whole chicken is more than you need, they’ll cut one in half. Yoder’s also offers other smoked and barbecued meats, as well as sides to go with them.
Hard Times Cafe is a local chain that specializes in chili and serves it several different ways, but they also have other dishes to round out the menu. If you’re not interested in chili, try wings or a chicken sandwich, which are char-grilled to perfection, and fries. There are several area locations; their Hard Times Cafe & Cue restaurants have pool tables, video games, and more.
Ledo’s is also a local chain. Best known for square pizza and reasonable prices, it has really taken off. There are locations all over the area, and even a few scattered around other states on the East Coast. They make their own sauce, which is available in glass jars for purchase. Ledo’s pizza crust is different and delicious, and they use smoked provolone instead of mozzarella. Ledo’s also makes a very good lasagna.
Pasta Plus, located in Laurel, is a more upscale Italian restaurant. The lasagna is a good choice, as is the timballo alla teramano. The brick-oven pizzas are also delicious. Pasta Plus is a popular venue for dates, business dinners, and work luncheons. Be prepared to wait; the lines can get very long, and this restaurant doesn’t take reservations.
Before heading out to any of these great restaurants in the Baltimore-Washington Corridor, check the website for more information. Don’t forget to call ahead and make sure they’re open.
Dutch Country Farmers Market
Hard Times Cafe