Thursday, April 26 2012 21:59

Charles Village Pub Celebrates 30 Delicious Years

By  John Cullen with Marty Shayt

The original Charles Village Pub (not to be confused with its namesake in Towson) is a small, noisy, old-time sports pub with a narrow space filled by a long bar with 20 stools on one side and lined with booths along the other. The walls above the booths are filled with Baltimore sports photos; the booths fit at most four people and there are no tables. On the floor along the bar, the finish has been worn away after 30 years of bar stools pushing back and forth. The only nods to modernity are a half dozen LCD TV's providing views of sports events. The unpretentious realness of the place combined with a mix of hunky Hopkins students, middle age straight couples, and 70+ year-old customers gave us a feeling similar to putting on some favorite old shoes.

 

The humble-looking menu offers more than you might expect. A few homemade soups ($4 for a bowl of crab soup), 15+ munchies (most $6-9), burgers (ranging from a $6 veggie to the 13-ounce "Big Daddy" with cheese and bacon for $10), a dozen club sandwiches ($8+), a bunch of other sandwiches (most $8), and a dozen platters (most $10).

We started by sharing an order of buffalo wings (12 for $8) with our friends Tom and Paul, and the wings proved to be finger-licking good and earned a "Thumbs Up" from all of us. On our waitress' recommendation, John got the Greek salad with chicken ($10), Marty ordered a Cajun tuna steak sandwich ($9) with a side order of curly fries ($3), Tom opted for the fish and chips platter ($9) and Paul decided on the Ravens Club ($8). John's salad arrived in a big bowl with lots of feta, olives, a sliced chicken breast, and a really tasty house feta vinaigrette dressing, which earned another "Thumbs Up." Ditto for the big chunk of nicely cooked tuna in Marty's sandwich; Marty felt that his delicious curly fries were well worth the cost. Paul's club included layers of Philly cheese steak and a pile of chips while Tom's platter included three pieces of fried, but not overly greasy, cod and a mountain of regular French fried "chips," both rated two more "Thumbs Ups." Our friendly waitress checked in regularly and kept our drinks filled.

Charles Village Pub has only two desserts: plain cheesecake and a homemade creation called the Apple Blossom (both $3.50). We were intrigued by the Apple Blossom and shared one order. It included two "blossoms"—artful petals of pie pastry encasing slightly tart and not overly sweet slices of baked apple with daubs of whipped cream. Yum!

Somewhat to our surprise, we learned that the Charles Village Pub is 30 years old this year. We confess that our last visit was well over a dozen years ago, and we left wondering why the heck we hadn't been back in so long. It definitely won't be that long before our next visit! ■

Charles Village Pub
3017 St. Paul St.
410.243.1611 • CharlesVillagePub.net
Open 7 days for lunch and dinner
Brunch on weekends • Full bar
Vegetarian options • Kitchen open until 1am

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