Red Maple (11.14.2008)

I am stuffed! Tonight was alot of fun and the food was mostly incredible! We headed up to Red Maple which is in the Mt. Vernon area of Baltimore city. Mt. Vernon is an "artsy" area that has museums, great little shops, restaurants, and older buildings with lots of cool architecture.

Red Maple is definitely not your typical Baltimore restaurant. While most places in B-more are pretty down to earth and casual - this has a cool, loungy, club feel. As we walked in, it felt like I was in DC or NY - not Baltimore!

They had a huge drink menu and we decided to split a bottle of Chardonnay. It was a sweet, light wine that went down veeery easily. So easily that we ended up ordering another bottle later on!They had mostly tapas on the menu, so after consulting with the waitress, who said they were pretty small dishes; we decided to split a whole bunch of them and pretend we were Padma and Tom on TOP CHEF. There were so many great sounding combinations! Since the complete menu isn't listed on the website, I am going to try and do these justice!

Here were some of our favorites:

The Edamame Hummus served with warm pita and tortilla chips. This stuff tasted incredible and my sister and I were thinking of ways we could make this ourselves. The waitress tried to take it away once, but we stopped her so that we clean out the bowl!
The Crispy coconut tofu with a key lime ponzu was completely...perfect...tasting.

Roasted butternut squash dumplings with a creamy sage sauce definitely made my eyebrows raise on the first bite I took. sinful.

Another favorite was the steamed chicken and vegetable dumplings. These suckers were gone before I remembered to take a picture!

<!--[endif]-->The gunpowder farms bison filet satay with green tea spices, sichuan pepper and tamari glaze was a big hit with the table, although I thought it could have used a dipping sauce of some sort. The glaze just wasn't enough for me. I enjoyed trying bison for the first time though!
Guess what they had - Pumpkin fries!! How could I pass these up? With all the pumpkin recipes flying around - I had never heard of this! They were really tasty - cooked exactly the way fries should be - slightly crisp on the outside. They came with a yogurt sauce of some sort - cant remember any of the ingredients for this one, but I do know it tasted delish.
We also sampled the flank steak topped with roasted tomatoes, Gorgonzola and a Guinness balsamic reduction. If it wasn't such a "hip" place, I probably would have licked the plate on this one. (didn't grab a picture of this one)

Some of our not so favorites were:
Shrimp, artichoke and spinach fritters with a ginger-soy dipping sauce. These were EXTREMELY salty. I could barely eat one of them and I would not order them again.
The wild mushroom falafel just didn't have the wow factor some of the other dishes had. I probably would have really enjoyed it on another night, at another restaurant, but it was up against some tough, tapas competition here and it just didn't measure up.
I actually think that the baby eggplant with sun-dried tomato tapenade, goat cheese, balsamic glaze would have been more of a favorite had it come out earlier. This one came out last and we were stuffed. Just didn't enjoy them the way I probably could have...
Here is my mom, sister and I after our fun meal!Did the night end here? nahhh. We hit up a cute wine shop right near the restaurant and bought some bottles. This guy was behind the register - he was security. (I think he looks like Hooch from Turner & Hooch!)Then we headed over to Little Italy's famous Vaccaros Italian Pastry Shop for coffee and dessert. We split a Sfogliatelli and a Pasticiotti with our coffees. Probably why I am still up right now - didnt get a decaf and I cant sleep!
If you are ever in Baltimore - I would definitely recommend a day in Mt. Vernon to look around and end it with an dinner at Red Maple! Oh and make sure to invite me...would love to go back.

Red Maple on Urbanspoon


MizFit November 15, 2008 at 6:41 AM  

how on earth did you get your mom to pose for the blog pic?
granted Ive tried to get mine do do videos :) but she runs from the camera like Ive never seen her run!

VeggieGirl November 15, 2008 at 8:05 AM  

Great meal!! Those pumpkin fries are SO intriguing.

Aww, lovely photo with your family!! :-)

lauren November 15, 2008 at 8:14 AM  

mizfit/Thanks for the comment! the picture was taken and THEN I said it would be on the blog. We had taken two different ones, so this was the approved one by all. :)

veggiegirl/it really was so delicious!

runningwithfood.com November 15, 2008 at 8:28 AM  

What a great night with your mom and sis! I'm jealous ... I miss my mom!!!

Your food looks out of this world good! The hummus ... tofu ... dumplings ... PUMPKIN FRIES ... all A-MAZ-ING!!

Enjoy your Saturday! :)

Erin of Care to Eat November 15, 2008 at 8:38 AM  

Love the Top Chef reference!

juliet November 15, 2008 at 8:43 AM  

Um. That looks beyond good. I want some soy bean hummus and some pumpkin fries. Wow!!

HangryPants November 15, 2008 at 8:51 AM  

Oh my! Everything looks delicious! What a fun time with your sister and mom.

loveofoats.com November 15, 2008 at 9:35 AM  

the Edamame Hummus looks so good - i never heard of it before! and ahhhh butternut squash dumplings - sounds like an awesome-food-filed night!

Fitnessista November 15, 2008 at 9:43 AM  

what a fun meal!
those pumpkin fries look awesome!
hope you have a wonderful weekend

Bridget November 15, 2008 at 9:52 AM  

omg that place looks AWESOME! I love tapas restaurants...I am in heaven when I can try that many things and I think I would of loved ALL of the items you ordered.

strongandhealthy November 15, 2008 at 1:09 PM  

What a delicious meal! Glad you had fun!

Caitlin November 15, 2008 at 1:28 PM  

I love tapas...and those look so good. Have a great weekend!

D10 November 15, 2008 at 2:29 PM  

All the food looks so delicious. The butternut squash dumplings with a creamy sage sauce, the Pumpkin fries and Sfogliatelli and a Pasticiotti. I am so hungry now!!!!

runjen November 15, 2008 at 8:15 PM  

Love tapas! The food looks amazing and I love the pumpkin frieds. Cute pic. of the 3 of you!

I Run for Fun November 16, 2008 at 1:07 AM  

Everything looks so good. That was quite a spread. Love the pic.

Foodie (Fab and Delicious Food) November 16, 2008 at 9:42 AM  

Wow, all the food looks delicious! And pumpkin fries - how cool!

P.S. When you get a chance, please make sure to pass on the blog award to five other bloggers. Here's a link to the rules:



Meghann November 16, 2008 at 8:50 PM  

OMG all of those dishes looka AMAZING! Especially the Coconut Tofu! YUM!

Katie November 17, 2008 at 8:11 AM  

WOWWWWW that dinner looks insanely good!

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