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The new Nana comes from Clavel chef and co-owner Carlos Raba.
DJ Impulse

The Hottest New Restaurants to Try Around Baltimore

Charm City is chock-full of exciting new dining destinations

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The new Nana comes from Clavel chef and co-owner Carlos Raba.
| DJ Impulse

Eater writers and editors always get the same question. Friends, family, acquaintances, and randos all want to know, “Where should I eat right now?” That’s where the Eater Heatmap enters the conversation, pointing diners toward the most intriguing or otherwise buzz-worthy new restaurants in the Baltimore area.

This list considers restaurants that have opened across Charm City as we welcome in 2024. It’s an exciting time for Baltimore’s dining scene, thanks to chefs branching off in new locations, along with fresh coffee shops, cafes, and daytime spots to consider.

For our map of Baltimore’s essential restaurants, go here. And plan a proper staycation in Baltimore with help from this 24-hour guide.

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Eater maps are curated by editors and aim to reflect a diversity of neighborhoods, cuisines, and prices. Learn more about our editorial process.

Clavel chef and co-owner Carlos Raba opened up his own taqueria just south of Towson. Lovingly named for his maternal great-grandmother Silvina, brightly colored Nana is a casual spot highlighting the flavors of Sinaloa, Mexico. Stars of the menu include tacos al pastor, overflowing tortas, bacon-wrapped hot dogs dubbed “doggos,” and rotisserie chicken. The latter, prepared in a multi-day process of dry-brining and marinating before fire-roasting in an open-style rotisserie, can be ordered in whole, half, or quarter sizes. Don’t overlook stellar sides and churros and rice pudding for dessert.

Nana brings quesadillas, chicken, sides, and more to south Towson.
DJ Impulse

The Urban Oyster

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Chef Jasmine Norton just planted permanent roots in Hampden, creating the first first full-service dining version of her roving raw bar. Here, a stunning design and upscale menu show off the dressier side of seafood. Think fried oyster deviled eggs and whole grilled branzino with salsa verde. But you can still expect Urban Oyster signatures like catfish tacos and a dozen oysters from the raw bar. The menu also features a full bar and a well-curated wine list with plenty of options for bubbles. The restaurant is only doing dinner for now, with brunch and bar-only offerings coming very soon.

The chic raw bar sets the mood with flickering candles and orbs of light.
Steve Vilnit

Prim and Proper

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Fresh on the Redwood block is the new Prim and Proper, which debuted Thursday, February 1. The beguiled, downtown space that once housed Chez Hugo is now home to the French-American newcomer from the Outkrowd and Clark Hospitality groups, responsible for other Baltimore favorites BLK Swan and Papi Cuisine. Chef Calvin Riley is turning out dishes like honey-glazed pork belly in roasted garlic sauce, a wagyu beef burger, and jumbo shrimp atop black fried rice. 

Costiera

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Lots of hearts were broken when the Brewer’s Hill corner darling, Gnocco, shuttered its doors in 2019. But after some taste-testing pop-ups at Southpaw, duo Brian Lavin and Sam White opened another permanent space, Costiera, fittingly on the edge of Little Italy in January. Expect a similar menu to their first venture, including squid-ink gnocchi, Long Island scallops, homemade pasta, and a pork chop entree, according to Baltimore magazine. The sun-drenched haven sports a 12-seat bar and artwork from a local muralist. 

Attman’s Delicatessen

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Any Baltimorean worth their salt has been to Attman’s Delicatessen since it opened on “Corned Beef Row” in 1915. In January, the beloved Jewish deli added fancier digs just down the street in Harbor Point, but kept the same classics like matzo ball soup, fork-tender brisket and pastrami, and stacked Reuben and Cloak & Dagger sandwiches. The new location, which marks the third for the Attman family, boasts the addition of house cocktails, according to The Baltimore Banner, including a Pickletini with homemade pickle juice.

Rize + Rest Cafe

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The picturesque corner of Linwood Avenue and Baltimore Street has been home to many eateries over the years. The latest arrival, an all-day cafe from chef Randall Matthews, suits the neighborhood well. Morning customers can enjoy biscuit egg sandwiches, yogurt parfaits, and specialty lattes. Starting at 5 p.m., offerings look more like tuna crudo, charcuterie, diver scallops, lobster spaghetti, and both non-alcoholic and spirited cocktails. The weekend brunch menu is a lovely amalgam of the two—all with views of lovely Patterson Park across the street.

Jinji Chocolate

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This past fall, local favorite chocolatier Jinji Fraser and her dad, Guy, opened a permanent storefront in Waverly. The 1,000-square-foot space is a far cry from her stall in Belvedere Square, where she spent the past decade operating and providing chocolate to places like Whole Foods and Old Westminster Winery. Located on Greenmount Avenue, the new Jinji Chocolate features a counter for chocolate-tasting, a retail area, and a production space for workshops and demos. Treats include dairy-free and gluten-free truffles, fudge, peanut butter-stuffed figs, and flavored chocolate bars. Patrons can also purchase chocolate spreads, chocolate-covered coffee beans, and cookies from local bakeries Doppio Pasticceria, Motzi Bread, and Wow Vegan Treats. Wash it down with hot chocolate, Cocochata, or a classic Egg Cream.

Decadent chocolate bars at Jinji.
Justin Tsucalas

Sacré Sucré

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This pastry shop darling just moved a couple blocks south into larger digs. The bright, airy space includes a beautiful glass case with pastries of every color, window and counter seating, a retail area with local coffee, and plenty of on-premise seating. Since they opened a few weeks ago, partners Dane Tinodeaxu and Manual “Manny” Sanchez have been cranking out plenty of king cakes, pan au chocolate, and, of course, many macarons in flavors like masala chai, chocolate-mint, and earl gray. 

The Buttonwood

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The Bun Shop owner and chef Minh Vo opened a sister spot, the Buttonwood, in December. The Mt. Vernon newcomer features plants and housewares for sale, as well as globally influenced dishes and a full-service bar. The current menu offers an array of international dishes including a Vietnamese banh mi, katsu curry, steak frites, and a bulgogi melt. In true Bun Shop style, the interior is beautifully decorated with velvet furniture and vegetation galore.

Thread Coffee

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A dozen years and four temporary locations later, Baltimore’s pioneering roastery Thread Coffee settled into its first long-term home in Greenmount West this month. The permanent production facility, which continues to ethically source Rwandan beans, doubles as a training lab for its wholesale clients and Baltimore baristas. The women-, queer-, and employee-owned business plans to host coffee workshops on the art of brewing and sustainable practices within the industry. Thread Coffee is sold by the cup and retail bag at restaurants, cafes, and grocers all over town.

Baja Tap

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D.C.-area restaurateur Scott Parker brought his hip taqueria to Fells Point last fall. The 7,000-square-foot space with a sizable patio pairs Baja California-styled street foods with multiple margaritas by the glass or pitcher and Mexican beers on tap. The menu also carves out room for tostadas, crab-topped guac, loaded nachos, quesadillas, and offbeat tacos like a shaved ribeye-and-queso Philly Philly creation. Weekday happy hour (4 p.m. to 7 p.m.) brings $4-and-up orders to the table.

Zander's

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An elegant steakhouse slinging martinis and Manhattans emerged late last year in downtown’s historic Alex. Brown & Sons investment bank building. The lunch-and-dinner lineup, anchored by prime cuts from Buckhead Meats, also showcases shrimp cocktail, oysters, beef tartare, and pastas like cacio e pepe. Its Art Deco-era digs, fully restored with its original marble, oversized windows, and opulent Tiffany glass dome, previously housed Alexander Brown Restaurant until 2020. Zander’s partner Brendon Hudson is also behind Baltimore’s Roman bistro Allora.

Nana

Clavel chef and co-owner Carlos Raba opened up his own taqueria just south of Towson. Lovingly named for his maternal great-grandmother Silvina, brightly colored Nana is a casual spot highlighting the flavors of Sinaloa, Mexico. Stars of the menu include tacos al pastor, overflowing tortas, bacon-wrapped hot dogs dubbed “doggos,” and rotisserie chicken. The latter, prepared in a multi-day process of dry-brining and marinating before fire-roasting in an open-style rotisserie, can be ordered in whole, half, or quarter sizes. Don’t overlook stellar sides and churros and rice pudding for dessert.

Nana brings quesadillas, chicken, sides, and more to south Towson.
DJ Impulse

The Urban Oyster

Chef Jasmine Norton just planted permanent roots in Hampden, creating the first first full-service dining version of her roving raw bar. Here, a stunning design and upscale menu show off the dressier side of seafood. Think fried oyster deviled eggs and whole grilled branzino with salsa verde. But you can still expect Urban Oyster signatures like catfish tacos and a dozen oysters from the raw bar. The menu also features a full bar and a well-curated wine list with plenty of options for bubbles. The restaurant is only doing dinner for now, with brunch and bar-only offerings coming very soon.

The chic raw bar sets the mood with flickering candles and orbs of light.
Steve Vilnit

Prim and Proper

Fresh on the Redwood block is the new Prim and Proper, which debuted Thursday, February 1. The beguiled, downtown space that once housed Chez Hugo is now home to the French-American newcomer from the Outkrowd and Clark Hospitality groups, responsible for other Baltimore favorites BLK Swan and Papi Cuisine. Chef Calvin Riley is turning out dishes like honey-glazed pork belly in roasted garlic sauce, a wagyu beef burger, and jumbo shrimp atop black fried rice. 

Costiera

Lots of hearts were broken when the Brewer’s Hill corner darling, Gnocco, shuttered its doors in 2019. But after some taste-testing pop-ups at Southpaw, duo Brian Lavin and Sam White opened another permanent space, Costiera, fittingly on the edge of Little Italy in January. Expect a similar menu to their first venture, including squid-ink gnocchi, Long Island scallops, homemade pasta, and a pork chop entree, according to Baltimore magazine. The sun-drenched haven sports a 12-seat bar and artwork from a local muralist. 

Attman’s Delicatessen

Any Baltimorean worth their salt has been to Attman’s Delicatessen since it opened on “Corned Beef Row” in 1915. In January, the beloved Jewish deli added fancier digs just down the street in Harbor Point, but kept the same classics like matzo ball soup, fork-tender brisket and pastrami, and stacked Reuben and Cloak & Dagger sandwiches. The new location, which marks the third for the Attman family, boasts the addition of house cocktails, according to The Baltimore Banner, including a Pickletini with homemade pickle juice.

Rize + Rest Cafe

The picturesque corner of Linwood Avenue and Baltimore Street has been home to many eateries over the years. The latest arrival, an all-day cafe from chef Randall Matthews, suits the neighborhood well. Morning customers can enjoy biscuit egg sandwiches, yogurt parfaits, and specialty lattes. Starting at 5 p.m., offerings look more like tuna crudo, charcuterie, diver scallops, lobster spaghetti, and both non-alcoholic and spirited cocktails. The weekend brunch menu is a lovely amalgam of the two—all with views of lovely Patterson Park across the street.

Jinji Chocolate

This past fall, local favorite chocolatier Jinji Fraser and her dad, Guy, opened a permanent storefront in Waverly. The 1,000-square-foot space is a far cry from her stall in Belvedere Square, where she spent the past decade operating and providing chocolate to places like Whole Foods and Old Westminster Winery. Located on Greenmount Avenue, the new Jinji Chocolate features a counter for chocolate-tasting, a retail area, and a production space for workshops and demos. Treats include dairy-free and gluten-free truffles, fudge, peanut butter-stuffed figs, and flavored chocolate bars. Patrons can also purchase chocolate spreads, chocolate-covered coffee beans, and cookies from local bakeries Doppio Pasticceria, Motzi Bread, and Wow Vegan Treats. Wash it down with hot chocolate, Cocochata, or a classic Egg Cream.

Decadent chocolate bars at Jinji.
Justin Tsucalas

Sacré Sucré

This pastry shop darling just moved a couple blocks south into larger digs. The bright, airy space includes a beautiful glass case with pastries of every color, window and counter seating, a retail area with local coffee, and plenty of on-premise seating. Since they opened a few weeks ago, partners Dane Tinodeaxu and Manual “Manny” Sanchez have been cranking out plenty of king cakes, pan au chocolate, and, of course, many macarons in flavors like masala chai, chocolate-mint, and earl gray. 

The Buttonwood

The Bun Shop owner and chef Minh Vo opened a sister spot, the Buttonwood, in December. The Mt. Vernon newcomer features plants and housewares for sale, as well as globally influenced dishes and a full-service bar. The current menu offers an array of international dishes including a Vietnamese banh mi, katsu curry, steak frites, and a bulgogi melt. In true Bun Shop style, the interior is beautifully decorated with velvet furniture and vegetation galore.

Thread Coffee

A dozen years and four temporary locations later, Baltimore’s pioneering roastery Thread Coffee settled into its first long-term home in Greenmount West this month. The permanent production facility, which continues to ethically source Rwandan beans, doubles as a training lab for its wholesale clients and Baltimore baristas. The women-, queer-, and employee-owned business plans to host coffee workshops on the art of brewing and sustainable practices within the industry. Thread Coffee is sold by the cup and retail bag at restaurants, cafes, and grocers all over town.

Baja Tap

D.C.-area restaurateur Scott Parker brought his hip taqueria to Fells Point last fall. The 7,000-square-foot space with a sizable patio pairs Baja California-styled street foods with multiple margaritas by the glass or pitcher and Mexican beers on tap. The menu also carves out room for tostadas, crab-topped guac, loaded nachos, quesadillas, and offbeat tacos like a shaved ribeye-and-queso Philly Philly creation. Weekday happy hour (4 p.m. to 7 p.m.) brings $4-and-up orders to the table.

Zander's

An elegant steakhouse slinging martinis and Manhattans emerged late last year in downtown’s historic Alex. Brown & Sons investment bank building. The lunch-and-dinner lineup, anchored by prime cuts from Buckhead Meats, also showcases shrimp cocktail, oysters, beef tartare, and pastas like cacio e pepe. Its Art Deco-era digs, fully restored with its original marble, oversized windows, and opulent Tiffany glass dome, previously housed Alexander Brown Restaurant until 2020. Zander’s partner Brendon Hudson is also behind Baltimore’s Roman bistro Allora.

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