An initial online search may leave visitors in the dark about where to eat in this quiet neighborhood, but locals quickly point to a few great establishments that remain anything but unknown. Owners of these local favorites may not choose to spend time developing their Internet presence, but the quality of food reveals time well spent.
Directly across from the Johns Hopkins University, on the corner of East Monument Street and North Broadway, sits a fried food lover's paradise. Mama Mia's represents the "other woman" to health food fanatics visiting and working at the nearby university. The cozy corner establishment offers its regulars a surprising number of breakfast and lunch options. From hotcakes and breakfast sandwiches to favorites such as the chicken cheesesteak on pita and the Fried shrimp basket, the food does not disappoint. If you still don't feel you have consumed enough calories through your fried food meal, Mama Mia's offers several tempting dessert options, including cheesecake and seasonal pies.
The aptly named Dog House, located directly across from the Baltimore penitentiary on Penn-Fallsway,
remains another local favorite that succeeds in staying busy despite its lack of marketing. Similar to Mama Mia's, Dog House appeals to customers through its hearty offering of breakfast and lunch items. Only open Monday through Friday, 6 a.m. to 3 p.m., with standing room only, the restaurant sees the majority of its patrons taking their meals to go. From fresh French toast sticks and homemade home fries to the meatloaf sandwich, the Dog House does not leave customers disappointed. Dog House represents one of the few establishments where you can grab a made-to-order meal without going over budget.
After a hard day's work, locals find nearby nightlife alternatives within a 10-minute drive from Old Town, via taxi or transit. Club Orpheus, situated on the edge of Little Italy
on East Pratt Street, has been drawing crowds for decades. Stimulate your senses when you walk through the door thanks to lively DJs, light shows, projectors and an upstairs lounge overlooking the central dance floor. The night club hosts themed events every Thursday, Friday and Saturday and offers nightly drink specials.
If you discover too much sensory overload with the nightclub scene, make your way over to Ziascoz, also located on East Pratt. This bar and lounge has more of a neighborhood pub feel, serving drinks and late night snacks. Ziascoz has $1 crab nights on Mondays and karaoke on Wednesdays. If have a hidden singing talent, locals may tell you this is one of the best venues in town to live your dream.