If the pandemic has taught us anything, it’s that you can take it with you.
When you just don’t feel comfortable eating inside a restaurant, getting food to go is no longer a matter of last resort. While plenty of joints have long run a brisk carryout and delivery business, other restaurants have gotten into the game as a way of broadening their business models.
When Le Comptoir du Vin pivoted to becoming a European-style pantry featuring grab-and-go items, they did it as a matter of survival. “When we saw the pandemic wasn’t going away, we restructured,” says Rosemary Liss, who co-owns the Station North restaurant with her partner Will Mester. “That has carried us through this whole time.”
Now, as the restaurant re-opens for regular dinner service, the marketplace is still open for business. “This is here to stay,” says Liss.
Carrying-out is the new dining-in. Here are the “It” items from other area spots:
Dylan’s Oyster Cellar
It’s an “R” month (not that it really matters anymore, thanks to oyster farming), which means it’s the peak time to slurp oysters to-go. From Duxbury to Wellfleets, this Hampden haunt serves some of the best bivalves in Baltimore.
The “Gnocchi Al Telefono” bathed in tomato ragù and topped with smoked mozzarella is as good to-go as when you eat in at this Locust Point restaurant.
This Owings Mills institution has consistently provided some of the best to-go fine-dining fare since the start of the pandemic. The broiled crab cake with a side of slaw is a menu highlight.
Don’t make us pick just one! Well, that’s the whole point at this Station North staple. Settle on a few classics, like spicy chicken and cheese croquettes, grilled octopus in Romesco sauce, salmon slicked with molasses, then follow up with flan.