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International Dining in Baltimore

Save your miles and reduce your carbon footprint—take your palate on an international journey with this guide to worldly dining.

Baltimore has long been a melting pot of immigrants from all over the world, starting with the German and Irish who arrived in the mid-1800s, and later including Polish, Italians, Greeks and more. Today we boast a majority African American population, a fast-growing Hispanic community and a burgeoning Chinatown revival. There’s a lot to celebrate about the energy, experiences and customs that immigrants bring to a city. But one of the best side effects? The food! Follow our guide to explore tastes from nearly every continent and celebrate the city’s diverse population (and palate!).

Looking for more ethnic eateries all in one place? Baltimore’s public markets offer plenty of international dining options.

Hop Around

Latin American

Alma Cocina Latina

Alma Cocina Latina, which recently moved to the Station North neighborhood, takes a contemporary approach to Venezuelan cuisine. Expect modern takes on the arepa—including combinations like slow-smoked pork with pickled onions, avocado and mango barbecue sauce or chorizo with fried egg, avocado and queso—plus other tasty dishes like crispy polenta. Also on tap: Artisanal sangria and cocktails made with small craft spirits.

Plate of food

Clavel

This mezcaleria and taqueria in the Remington neighborhood pairs a minimalist but cozy style—the white walls and polished concrete surfaces are warmed by wooden furniture, string lights and plenty of green plants—with a similarly stylish and petite menu. Clavel’s take on tacos veers modern, such as the lamb barbacoa, which is braised in Mexican coffee, Modelo Negra and spices, or the shrimp ceviche, cured in lime juice with spicy cilantro pesto and cucumber. Even the tortillas are special: The flour versions are handmade using a fifth-generation family recipe.

Maximón

Based at the Four Seasons in Harbor East, Maximón takes its name from a Mayan god and, fittingly, is inspired by South American and Mexican cuisine, cocktails, design and more. The large space includes a stage for live musical performances, a Spanish-style courtyard and a tequila tasting room where you can blend your own bottle.

Puerto 511

Slightly tucked away in the Bromo Arts District, this petite restaurant takes on Peruvian cuisine that varies from street food to ceviche. At Puerto 511, Chef Jose Victorio Alarcon cooks up specialties such as lomo saltado and arroz con mariscos to perfection.

Bar Vasquez

A celebration of Argentina’s Buenos Aires, Bar Vasquez showcases the country’s meat-centric cuisine and seasonal South American ingredients. Starters like empanadas join delicious vegetable sides like wood-grilled local corn with chimichurri sauce and roasted sweet potato with caramelized pimenton honey and thyme.

Asian

Dooby’s

Part coffee shop, part casual eatery, this popular spot from local restaurateur Phil Han, offers up a fresh take on Korean cuisine. The menu at Dooby’s includes rice bowls and noodle dishes like gochujang pork ramen, plus fried kimchi rice, interesting sandwiches and tasty snacks such as Korean hot wings and dumplings adapted from a family recipe.

A chef puts the finishing touches on a pork bun at Dooby's

Ekiben

What started as a food cart at the Fell’s Point Farmers Market is now a petite 10-seat brick-and-mortar restaurant that dishes up Taiwanese curry fried chicken and Thai chicken meatballs in the form of steamed buns or rice bowls, plus specials that change regularly. What doesn’t change, however, is the fusion-fueled perspective—all the food at Ekiben leans pan-Asian, but there are smatterings of other flavors, such as Ethiopian spices and tahini.

French

Petit Louis Bistro

A little piece of Paris imported into Roland Park, this charming bistro has been a local favorite for more than two decades. At Petit Louis Bistro, expect classic French dishes—think cassoulet and boeuf bourguignon—using local ingredients.

Petit Louis Outdoor Space

Enjoy the outdoor dining space at Petit Louis.

Duck Duck Goose

Duck Duck Goose, a favored Fell’s Point eatery, takes on classic French bistro fare, but done with a fresh, modern twist. Try dishes like honey-roasted duck, served with a cherry reduction, or the pastry-wrapped halibut with scallop mousse and pea puree.

Duck Duck Goose steak dinner

Spanish

La Cuchara

Taking inspiration from the Basque region, La Cuchara is set in a former mill in Woodberry and features an open kitchen centered around a wood-fire grill that plays a role in producing its traditional asador, or grilled meats and seafood, and its pitxos, which are small bites.

Interior of La Cuchara restaurant

Restaurante Tio Pepe

Billed as authentically Spanish, this Baltimore institution in Mount Vernon has been beloved by diners for a half-century. Locals love Restaurante Tio Pepe for good reason; the cozy subterranean spot serves up a traditional regional menu that includes classic favorites like gazpacho, tortillas and paella, plus grilled and roasted meats and seafood.

 

Tapas Teatro

Tiny but tasty treats at Tapas Teatro

Petite but energetic, Tapas Teatro, tucked into a small spot next door to The Charles Theatre, is geared toward sharing small plates that include papas bravas, spicy chicken croquettas, crispy grilled squid and more. Don’t forget to check out the list of specialty gin & tonics — or order a pitcher of sangria to share on the charming outdoor patio if the weather is nice.

Mediterranean

Ouzo Bay

Ouzo Bay focuses on Greek cuisine, combining classic dishes such as lamb keftedes, spanakopita and hummus with fresh seafood that’s flown in daily. Come here to experience one of the region’s most extensive ouzo selections. And don’t miss Ouzo Beach, an extension of the restaurant just steps from the front door, complete with a Mediterranean-style courtyard and outdoor bar.

Ouzo Bay restaurant

 

Twist

At Twist, executive chef Jose Molina brings personal to the plate as he marries his Hispanic and American influences to his time spent in Greece and the eastern Mediterranean. Try the Mediterranean lamb burger, topped with feta and harissa cucumber yogurt sauce, or the Moroccan spice lamb sausage.

Japanese

Ejji Ramen

Located along the back wall inside Belvedere Square Market, this casual spot focuses on Japanese-style ramen, including its signature rich, umami-filled tonkatsu. Beyond the noodle bowls, Ejji offers other pan-Asian nibbles like Malaysian flatbread and coconut rice bowls with eggplant katsu sambal.

Azumi

This stylish spot at the Four Seasons is helmed by a Tokyo native whose impressive resume includes stints at Japanese restaurants in our nation’s biggest cities. At Azumi, he creates a menu that features luxe ingredients like wagyu short rib and miniature Japanese freshwater crabs—a signature appetizer—plus sushi made from fish flown directly from Tokyo’s famous Tsukiji Fish Market.

Azumi patio