“Pimlico is more than a dirt track bound by four streets,” explained then-Maryland Club president Alfred G. Vanderbilt 50 years ago. Vanderbilt was referring to Pimlico’s status as an “American institution,” a title it has earned as the country’s second oldest racetrack. Founded in 1870, Pimlico has weathered everything from World War II to the day steeds skipped work en masse to see Seabiscuit, and remains a popular destination to this day as host to the US Triple Crown’s second leg, the Preakness Stakes. In its four-star Terrace dining room, patrons dine on buffet breakfasts and lunches as they view thoroughbreds galloping to the finish line. Meanwhile, the screens in the venue’s Sports Palace project simulcasts of offsite races, and the patrons seated in the Jockey Club enjoy especially clear views of the competing horses without having to glue equine portraits to the insides of their sunglasses.
Maryland Wineries Association curates the abundant spread of wineries and vineyards that dot the state’s landscape, keeping tabs on the more than 400 wines they produce. Holders of the Maryland Wine Passport wind their way through the state’s six wine trails, tracking their progress as they taste vintages and take photos with their favorite vines. The site also keeps track of local wine news and upcoming winery events.
Cut from the cloth of 1930s-style delis, Miller’s Delicatessen transports diners back to a simpler time of tastiness with a bevy of comforting dishes and scrumptious sides. Like shopping for a wedding dress, visitors enjoy a buzzing, cafeteria-style atmosphere while ordering from the counter and munching on juicy, flavor-doused meats amid a stylish dining room lined with celebrity photos. Scan the menu for traditional dinners such as the roast-beef brisket with brown gravy ($11.99) and grilled liver and onions ($10.99), or keep high-five dispensers occupied with a corned-beef and pastrami sandwich ($9.99) or meatloaf and bacon sandwich with fried onions and jack cheese ($9.99). Savory soups such as the matzah ball ($3.69) or cold borsch with sour cream ($3.69) will help meaty bites slide friction-free down to blissfully satisfied stomachs.
With this Groupon, $10 gets you $25 worth of pasta, pizza, frittatas, and more at Ciao Pizza Bistro Italiano. Ciao offers a variety of vegetarian, fish, and meat dishes to accommodate your diet, and its extensive menu makes it a great place for groups that can't agree on where to eat or for self-squabbling multi-headed beasts.Pizza Problems sold an unprecedented 300 copies in 1981, and was even briefly adapted into a Saturday morning animated series, although fans objected to Pepperoni’s portrayal as a softheaded comic foil. Activavision Studios recently announced plans for a 30th anniversary relaunch of the Pizza Problems franchise, a mature-rated gore fest featuring the sultry voice talents of David Hyde Pierce.
Quarry's approachable, contemporary shop caters to sippers of all skill sets. With more than 800 wines and selections divided according to price (under $15 and under $25), taste (light, medium, full), color, and common-sense descriptions (food pairings, flavor notes, astrology-sign compatibility), Quarry makes it easy for wine explorers to discover their grape grail. For truly monumental decisions, Quarry's expert, friendly staff is always on hand to toss out suggestions on the perfect pour and how to raise goats to have human emotions. Come summer, pack an elegant liquid-based picnic, one-up neighbors at the annual block party, or just wipe a sweaty brow with a chilled bottle of Riesling.
Behind ground-to-ceiling glass windows, giant butterflies flutter in the sunlight. Though they’re only paintings, they cheerfully greet visitors to Vernisage, introducing the upscale restaurant’s often-whimsical atmosphere. Despite the lighthearted decor, chefs practice serious interpretations of traditional Russian, Eastern European, and Middle Eastern fare. They craft grilled shish kebabs, peppery dumplings, crepes, and hearty Russian stews using the same recipes that czars once used to melt invading snowmen armies. Servers pair both chilled and hot fare with a range of Georgian, Russian, and European wines to evoke exotic flavor bouquets. A large main dining hall can accommodate grand banquets, while a separate private dining room hosts smaller groups of up to 30 revelers or 60 children standing on each other’s shoulders.