The most common way to experience the Deep South is to find a street magician and hope he pulls a shiny Louisiana state quarter from your ear. Today's deal presents another option when there are no illusionists: for $10, you get $25 worth of modern Southern cuisine at Darker Than Blue Café on Greenmount Avenue. Darker Than Blue was ranked among Baltimore magazine's top 50 restaurants in 2009.
Chef Casey Jenkins keeps this jazz-inspired café's menu stacked with innovative interpretations of classic Southern dishes. The stuffed shrimp starter places portly jumbo shrimp under the stronghold of meaty crab and lemon-butter sauce ($11.95), and the low country catfish fingers ($10.25) comprise cornmeal-dusted fish fried to crispy resistance, ready for mealtime martyrdom. Stomachs will cease grumbling as they submit to the chicken and waffle entree ($19.95), while sautéed spinach and jasmine rice sing backup for the blackened Louisiana tilapia in a salmon-and-shrimp-dotted cream sauce ($19.95).
Chef Jenkins developed Darker Than Blue as a space to enjoy Southern specialties in a cool, casual setting without having to molecularly manifest on the bayou by the power of frozen-juice-like concentration. Live music is featured regularly to fill the ears and the soulful, brooding holes of the heart. Call to make a reservation.
- The best news for Waverly since the farmers' market became the chic place to shop may be the opening of Darker Than Blue, a cheerful little cafe... – Elizabeth Large, Baltimore Sun
- The place itself has a good vibe, and the front table is a great place to go with a group of people… – ebhought, Urbanspoon
Darker Than Blue Cafe
When 18-year old Casey Jenkins enrolled in the US Marine Corp, his only intention was to serve his country. After spending time as a line cook, however, he began a love affair with the culinary arts. When service ended, he took his skills to the next level by enrolling in the Culinary Institute of America. Over time, he honed his skills and eventually opened Darker Than Blue Cafe, known throughout Baltimore for its pairing of live jazz performances with low-country southern cuisine made from fresh, local ingredients.
The restaurant has garnered praise, voted Baltimore’s Best Soul Food by Voice Places. Diners sip peach-mango tea during all-you-can-eat Sunday jazz brunch, when live music fills the restaurant for a more melodious backdrop than a recording of Harvey Fierstein reading The Grapes of Wrath. They can also bring their own libations to enjoy with dinner, which features classics such as chicken and waffles topped with whipped cream, Cajun shrimp served over salmon cakes, and baby-back ribs.