Blue Hill Tavern: Baltimore, MD

So, I guess I have been on a little (unplanned) hiatus from the blog.  Summer hit and busy times ensued.  I will probably pop in sporadically for the rest of the summer when I feel the urge, just like this dinner at Blue Hill Tavern a few weeks back.

I have been hearing great things about Blue Hill for awhile now, so when Mara wanted to take me out for a birthday dinner, I thought this would be a perfect place.  We both love food, so it is always fun to go out to eat together.  Sitting down and reviewing the menu, I had high hopes that Blue Hill Tavern could  be a new favorite.

Sangria.  White for me.  Red for her.  I was hoping for a little more fruit, but they were both refreshing and light.  And went down very easy.  We had two rounds.  

Since so many of the menu options looked delicious, we decided to split a whole bunch of things, so we could maximize the amount we each got to taste.
Crostini & SpreadsFeta Butter, olive tapenade.

This dish sold us on the Feta Butter, but it was more butter than feta.  In fact, neither of us tasted much feta.  The olive tapenade was almost too salty to eat.  Disappointing.

Fried Guacamole: tortilla crusted, salsa fresca

Fried Guacamole?  We had to try this.  I envisioned freshly made tortilla chips, each individually topped with a fried dollop of homemade guacamole.  Not so much.  The blue corn chips were bland and the large mound of fried guacamole did not taste homemade.  Salsa fresca also brought nothing to the table.  This was not worth the $9.

Calamari Salad: Cornmeal crusted, mixed greens, peanuts, cilantro, chili-lime vinaigrette

What a great ingredient combination for a salad!  While the calamari was tender, unfortunately, the remaining parts of the salad were drowned in dressing.  Our mistake for not asking this to come on the side, but the chili-lime vinaigrette tasted and looked more like a chili plum sauce.

Yellowfin Tuna: peppercorn encrusted, fried polenta cake, broccoli rabe, pickled watermelon rind, spiced watermelon barbecue sauce

A beautiful presentation, but it couldn't make up for the lack of flavor.  We both agreed we have never had seared tuna that flavorless and there wasn't nearly enough sauce on the plate.  The polenta cake was good, but the broccoli rabe was overcooked.  

Macaroni and Cheese

The mac & cheese was everything is should have been, but not the best I've ever had. The pasta was cooked well and the sauce was creamy and cheesy.  No complaints here.  We only wish that we had ordered two of these and called it a night.

It was extremely disappointing that the food didn't live up to our expectations.  Perhaps we just ordered the wrong things?  An off night?  It was beautifully decorated and the upstairs deck had a relaxed atmosphere.   Our server was attentive and friendly, but all of our appetizers and the salad came out at once.  It would have been nice to have things spaced out more evenly.   

Would I go back to Blue Hill?  Maybe.  But it would only be for the sangria and mac & cheese.

Blue Hill Tavern on Urbanspoon


Kt June 30, 2010 at 1:55 PM  

I completely agree about Blue Hill. We live right around the corner from it and had been hearing mixed reviews. We finally tried it, and it was "eh" to me. We haven't gone back since - I thought it was overpriced for the quality of the meal.

bamarunner11 June 30, 2010 at 2:25 PM  

At least the mac and cheese was good ;)

Erica June 30, 2010 at 9:39 PM  

I've missed you! What a bummer. Fried Guacamole?? That is just craziness. Hope you're enjoying your week

Tami July 5, 2010 at 3:49 AM  

I'm so glag you're back- I've missed reading your blog. Too bad the food wasn't better! :(

Tami @http://jesseandtami.blogspot.com

Charm City Kim July 7, 2010 at 8:14 AM  

That's how I felt about Blue Hill (although I didn't try a lot of food - they're not very veg-friendly).

I got a few apps (I also tried the fried guacamole) and was less than impressed especially given the cost of everything!

Anonymous August 11, 2010 at 4:12 PM  

I've never heard of fried guac. I have a feeling my Mex-influenced SoCal locals would roll their eyes. It's so "american" to fry up Guac, ya know?

lauren August 12, 2010 at 9:56 AM  

eatmovewrite\ completely agree!

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