03 September 2014

Charm City Travels

Happy September! I'm back after a short work trip to Baltimore and DC, followed by a long holiday weekend at the lake. I was thrilled to be able to visit some new spots in Baltimore and some of my old favorites in Georgetown last week--The weather was hot, hot, hot, and I enjoyed some good shopping and good eats. What more can a girl want?

Quite possibly the best car ever. Spotted near Fell's Point on the Baltimore waterfront.
The first day in Baltimore, I explored Federal Hill neighborhood, stopping into fun shops like Apothecary Wellness with a wide selection of organic products and Phina's for the Home.

I also checked out the Cross Street Market, which is part of the Baltimore Public Markets, the oldest continuously run public markets in the country. Although the market had everything from Chinese food to cheese steaks, I opted for a crab cake lunch at Ryleigh's Oyster House. Delish!


I went to an Orioles- Tampa Bay Rays game at Camden Yards. I may not be a baseball fan but the stadium sure is impressive! The land that the park is on once was an old rail station, and the B&O warehouse building still serves as one side of the stadium. The exposed brick gives the stadium some historical charm, and treed picnic areas offer fans places to eat and drink in a park-like setting.

Since I'd already been to lots of the attractions in the Baltimore Harbor area, like the aquarium and Fort McHenry, I spent some of my free time in Baltimore wandering Mount Vernon Place. Recognized as a National Historical Landmark District, Mount Vernon Place has incredible 19th Century architecture, museums, monuments, churches and public spaces with music, exhibits and festivals.

As a Hopkins alum and a huge fan of libraries, I was excited to be able to visit the Peabody Institute's library in Mount Vernon Place. I think it was the most beautiful library I've ever been inside -- 300,000 books dating from the 15th Century, black and white marble floor, cast-iron balconies and antique light fixtures, real card catalogs, gold scalloped columns, a latticed skylight. If you read The Knot, keep an eye out for the Peabody Institute featured as a venue in the Fall 2014 edition. (And, yes, I did make the collage below with pictures I took on my iphone...The fact I took the time to use picmonkey reinforces how much I loved this space!)

The Washington monument, the centerpiece of Mount Vernon, is the oldest monument to Washington in the country and is currently under construction. The architect, Richard Mills, also went on to design the Washington monument in the nation's capital. I was however able to take some photos of the Lafayette monument nearby, which was a thrill since I just finished reading 1776.

After wandering around the neighborhood, I made my way a few blocks to Milk and Honey, an old drugstore turned market/deli/cafe.

The menu is extensive, and the service was slllloooooowww. But this specialty salad of blueberries, turkey, micro greens, goat cheese and nuts was well worth the wait! I enjoyed it while sitting in the sun in one of Mount Vernon's public gardens and reading Go Wild (review coming soon). A perfect afternoon...

Dinner was a short water taxi ride across the harbor to Fell's Point and the Thames Street Oyster House, 2014 winner of Baltimore Magazine's Best Seafood award. AGREE! We started with the rock octopus appetizer and then I had the seared Block Island scallops over succotash of corn, pepper and English peas. The presentation, flavor and freshness were all worthy of five-stars-- TripAdvisor reviews confirm!

More to follow about my adventures in DC and a Labor Day weekend filled with fun!

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