Until this summer, I had never been to The Yard Bar & Grille at the Marriott Inner Harbor at Camden Yards. I’d seen the hotel, of course, as I walked to an O’s game, but never ventured inside. And until last year, I’d never really even eaten at a hotel restaurant in Baltimore except at a wedding or other event. Well, not anymore. I had, literally, never even seen The Yard. It’s in a location that I just never really frequent and you also can’t see it from the street. But once you go into the hotel, there it is, calling you to enjoy seafood, local craft beers and more. Don’t you love it when you discover something great and it was right under your nose?
When I drove up to the entrance, I thought, oh, wow! Look across the street…the Bromo Seltzer Tower, one of Baltimore’s most iconic buildings. Of course, nerd that I am, parked the car and walked out to the street to get a shot of it. I just love that building, don’t you?
The hotel has just undergone a huge renovation, which included the The Yard. The decor is warm, yet modern, with local flavor throughout thanks to walls with Baltimore images like the Domino sugar sign, Little Italy street lights and more. The exposed brick walls, pendant lights and rich dark wood floors made me think of a rehabbed city rowhouse. That nod to Baltimore gave me the heads up that more was to come…and the menu did not disappoint where that was concerned. Many local farms and food producers the restaurant uses are listed on the menu – Springfield Farm, Roseda Beef, Stone Mill Bakery, One Straw Farm, Prigel Family Creamery, True Blue Maryland Crabs and more. As you can imagine, the menu featured lots of seafood, especially crab. Baltimoreans love their crab and tourists come here looking for it! Just last week, I was accosted on the street in Hampden by a tourist asking where to find the best steamed crabs…she was really serious and wrote things on her hand…I think she was drunk…but I digress. (p.s. Anyone want to open a crab house in Hampden?)