Eye on the Ball

8 Ball Meatball is a meat-lover’s paradise.

By Corey McLaughlin - July 2016

Review: 8 Ball Meatball

8 Ball Meatball is a meat-lover’s paradise.

By Corey McLaughlin - July 2016

The Parmesan cream sauce paired well with the spicy pork meatballs. -Photography by Scott Suchman

National Meatball Day—yes, there is one of those, too—seemed like the perfect time to visit the Fells Point restaurant that celebrates the round mounds all year long. And, apparently, we weren’t the only ones who thought so. On a spring evening, a pair of out-of-towners glanced at the sidewalk A-frame sign—featuring a chalk-drawn bowl of the namesake comfort food—and decided to give it a try.

Meanwhile, at a table in the spacious main dining and barroom, a group of middle-aged women merrily finished their meals. “You gotta live that meatball life,” said one, sounding particularly pleased. Soon Baltimore Ravens offensive coordinator Marc Trestman arrived with his wife, Cindy. They saddled up to two stools at a 14-seat marble island table and ordered to go.

At 8 Ball, there is something for everyone. And just to be clear: These aren’t your grandmother’s meatballs. These modern, golf-ball-size takes are better, and will leave your mouth watering until you return. The setup is deceptively simple. There are five main “balls” (get comfortable with the word here; it’s even on the bathroom doors —“Balls” for the men’s room; “No Balls” . . . you get the drift) that comprise the mix-and-match offerings, along with six sauces, including mushroom gravy and tomato.

Assisted by our waiter, we went with the classic meatball (with tomato sauce), the spicy pork (with Parmesan cream), and the Greek lamb (with pesto) on brioche sliders ($3 each). The Parmesan cream paired well with the spicy pork, and all were flavorful and juicy through each bite. Other options include a bowl of four ($9) with focaccia and freshly grated cheese, a meatball artisan sub ($12), a meatball “salad” ($12), plus sides like risotto and roasted vegetables ($6 each).

Delicious fare aside, this is a place you can hang out. The decor is industrial, with exposed brick on one end and detailed tile touches. The bar, where we sat nearby, and a more intimate dining area seats upward of 25 off the main space. Dinner and lunch are the primary focus (with a daily happy hour that includes beer, wine, and cocktails), as well as a weekend brunch. Can every day be National Meatball Day? It sure is here.


›› 8 Ball Meatball 814 S. Broadway, 443-759-5315. Hours: Sun. 10-12 a.m., Mon.-Wed. 11-12 a.m., Thu.-Fri. 11-2 a.m., Sat. 10-2 a.m. Appetizers: $6-14; entrees: $9-12; desserts: $3-5.





You May Also Like


In Good Taste

Open & Shut: Creole Soul; Andina; Jack & Zach’s

The latest restaurant openings, closings, and recent news.

In Good Taste

Open & Shut: Ministry of Brewing; Ekiben; Sorrento of Arbutus

The latest restaurant openings, closings, and recent news.

Food & Drink

Three Local Drinks to Bring to Your Holiday Celebration

We're spoiled for choice when it comes to locally sourced beer, wine, and spirits.


Food & Drink

Local Flavor Live Podcast: Is 2020 The Year of Restaurant Rebrands?

Plus, our thoughts on Dry January, Restaurant Week tips, and best bites.

In Good Taste

Open & Shut: Taharka Bros.; Sizka; Acropolis

The latest restaurant openings, closings, and recent news.

In Good Taste

Pastry Chefs Share Holiday Cookie Recipes Your Friends Will Love

These festive treats are sure to impress at parties and cookie swaps.

The Parmesan cream sauce paired well with the spicy pork meatballs. -Photography by Scott Suchman

Connect With Us

Most Read


Meet the Ravens’ 25-Year-Old, Number-Crunching Whiz Who Has John Harbaugh’s Ear: Park School alum Daniel Stern helps call the game-changing shots for his hometown team.

Gervonta Davis Wins Another World Title Belt, Eyes ‘Big Year’ Ahead: West Baltimore’s own was bruised, but not beaten in longest fight of his pro career.

Maryland Politicians React to Trump Impeachment: Local leaders reflect and look ahead at Senate trial.

What to Know About the Maryland Cycling Classic Coming September 2020: For starters, Baltimore's pro cycling event will be more than 100 miles long.

Maryland Native Maggie Rogers Receives First Grammy Nomination: The singer-songwriter was nominated for “Best New Artist” alongside big-name acts.