The Top Restaurants In Hampden, Baltimore

Angela Lee

Though a small district, Hampden is one of the most unique neighborhoods in Baltimore, Maryland, full of cultural and special features such as the Hon Festival and The Halloween House. Not only is Hampden known for its events and houses, but also it is recognized for some of its most interesting and distinctive restaurants. Here are the 10 best.

The Food Market

Home of exceptional meals that use basic ingredients prepared in unique ways, The Food Market offers familiar comfort food in a contemporary, industrialized dining area. Award-winning Chef Chad Gauss, whose culinary interests and experience bloomed at the age of 14, has always been an enthusiast for developing dishes that are original and peculiar. Previously, he was Executive Chef at Blue Stone and the Trapeze during his early career, and has received the title ‘Best New Chef’ for his accomplishments at City Café in 2010. To carry on his legacy as an innovative chef, he has created a menu that well represents his cooking style at The Food Market. Chef Gauss continues to receive praise for his magical dishes.

Woodberry Kitchen

A devotee to sustainable farming, Woodberry Kitchen, a two-floor restaurant with high ceilings, brick oven and kitchen made of freshly cut logs, only uses meat and produce cultivated by Chesapeake farmers and available each season. By procuring and displaying ingredients from a local source, the restaurant not only promotes local farming but also upholds the local economy and provides guests with natural and healthy nourishment. In addition to its contribution to sustainable agriculture and provision of fresh, locally sourced food, the restaurant offers exceptional service as well as entertainment, placing it among the best restaurants in the district.

Grano Emporio

A classy Italian diner that supports Baltimore’s local food movement, Grano Emporio upholds its tradition of serving authentic Italian cuisine made from fresh, locally sourced ingredients with warm, amicable hospitality. The restaurant procures its produce and meat from nearby sources such as the fields of Mount Airy and the hoop houses of Big City Farms in Baltimore, and features them in an elegant display of traditional and contemporary Italian dishes. In addition, Grano Emporio presents high quality products, including, but not limited to, olive oils, liquors and coffee that are imported straight from Italy in its bazaar to provide guests with an authentic taste and feel.

Golden West Café

A small family-friendly, casual diner, Golden West Café offers a vast range of American comfort foods that originate from the southwestern states of America, particularly New Mexico. The restaurant uses only local produces from nearby sources such as Cherry Glen Farm, Tanner’s Pickles, Springfield Farm and Zeke’s Coffee, and prepares each dish using only the best and freshest of the ingredients. Many customers visit for the unique gluten-free selections, vegetarian and vegan options, homemade specialties, traditional lunch menus, dinner favorites and homemade desserts. Another feature that many local residents claim to be their favorite hangout spot is the Long Bar, which serves food and drinks all day every day until midnight. Thus, Golden West Café is a great dining spot for children and adults.

Rocket To Venus

A hipster diner with a handcrafted bar, Rocket to Venus is an irreplaceable secondary home for many local residents, especially for the owner. It was named after a story about three local men, the owner included, whose desire and determination to fly to Venus grew widely known throughout the neighborhood. In 1928, the three of them built a 24-foot tall, gasoline-powered spacecraft made of materials such as iron and sailcloth that totaled to be about $5,000. The rocket was supposed to carry one of them to Venus, however, the project ended in a failure.

Daniela Pasta And Pastries

Daniela Pasta and Pastries is a dream trattoria that Owner Daniela Useli has made into a reality. An immigrant from Sardinia, Italy, Useli moved to Baltimore in high hopes of developing her own small restaurant. After working with famed chefs at Grano Emporio and Sotto Sopra for a year, she founded Daniela Pasta and Pastries, specializing in Sardinian cuisine such as breakfast or dessert pastries and handmade pasta covered in aromatic, mouthwatering sauce. Not only does she introduce Sardinian culture to the community through food, but also Useli provides cooking lessons and special events that local residents and visitors can sign up for. To this day, she continues to provide the community with Sardinian culture through food, education as well as warm, heartfelt hospitality.


Using only fresh ingredients supplied by local farmers and seafood merchants, Birroteca offers modern, authentic Italian cuisine perfect for a special gathering or a romantic dinner date. In addition to deliciously savory plates, the restaurant presents over 24 craft beers, a variety of refined Italian wine as well a unique collection of exotic cocktails formulated using homemade mixes and distilled spirits. Furthermore, it welcomes guests into an elegant yet casual setting where waiters and waitresses serve them with the utmost care and attention.

The Dizz

Originally named Buckley’s, The Dizz is a popular diner that has received numerous awards from Baltimore’s City Paper as the best corner and neighborhood bar that provides the best hamburgers and club sandwiches in addition to the best happy hour. The name of the restaurant changed from Buckley’s to Dizzy Issie’s in honor of a family friend, Issie, who is the cook of the restaurant, and then shortened after a series of renovations to The Dizz. It is mostly thanks to the cook that guests venture to taste the burgers and club sandwiches, only to return for more. To this day, The Dizz’s popularity continues to grow exponentially even though the menu and staff have remained the same since the day it opened.

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