At Wild Duck Cafe, good-timers trundle up to the dockside tiki bar to cheer a juggernautical parade of Baltimore specialties and near-daily entertainment. The menu boasts exotic starters such as the crab pretzel, a soft dough knot lurking beneath a canopy of crab dip and shredded cheddar, or the alligator bites, designed to bestow Captain Hook with the chipotle-ranch flavor of vengeance. Tuck into a main course of dish-dominating jumbo crab cake or elegantly sautéed beef tips in white-wine-garlic sauce. This riverside restaurant allows outdoorsy diners an alternative to terrestrial transport, with a 300-foot dock accessible by sailboat or pet beluga.
The confectioners at MB Sweets and Treats spruce up parties, weddings, or everyday meals with homemade truffles, cookies, tiered cakes, and cupcakes. Dozens of flavors of cupcakes treat tongues to delicacies such as Madagascar-bourbon-vanilla cake and strawberry-jelly-filled cupcakes with peanut-butter frosting. The bakers can customize larger cakes with personal greetings for birthdays or productivity spreadsheets for annual performance reviews.
Cake craftswoman Cynthia adds a sweet, artful touch to weddings, birthday parties, and events with custom cakes pulled fresh from her oven and wildly creative imagination. She sifts, mixes, and ices one-of-a-kind confectionery marvels—in chocolate, vanilla, and red velvet—to each client’s specifications. No two creations look the same, and each custom goody pushes her ingenuity as she achieves such unlikely designs as a Chucky doll, Nikon camera, or motorcycle. Traditional tiered cakes further demonstrate Cynthia’s artistry and attention to detail with precisely crafted flowers, lace, and filigree fit for the Queen of England’s midnight snack.
Visit Cafe Euro and you might spot Dana Buric, brewing specialty coffee drinks and boxing European pastries alongside her son Dani and daughter Ira. They slice up fresh meats and vegetables for paninis and shower hearty pastas in savory dressing. Committed to recreating the relaxed atmosphere of a traditional European coffeehouse, they encourage guests to linger on the plush chairs of their sunlit cafe while enjoying complimentary Wi-Fi.
Only fair-trade, shade-grown organic coffee is roasted in-house at High Grounds, where a brand-new roaster transforms beans into liquid treats using dark magic. Percolate each morning with a two-shot latte ($3.66), or buzz through the day with a regular drip coffee ($1.54). Adding to the aromatic drinks is the pungent scent of free high-speed WiFi, which permeates the air and creates the ideal atmosphere for studying or grabbing a latte before work. As a testament to its quality, High Grounds' house-roasted coffee can also be found out of house in retail outlets such as Whole Foods.
From behind a frozen granite slab, the staff of Cold Stone Creamery blends custom servings of ice cream and creative mix-ins to fit customers’ exact specifications. Founded by Donald and Susan Sutherland in 1988, Cold Stone began under the hot Arizona sun, eventually spreading its frosty fingers to encompass more than 1,400 locations worldwide. Despite the size of the company, each location’s staff keeps up the handcrafted quality, making ice cream onsite every day and using those signature spades to create delicious pointillist art against the freezer wall.