The 7 Best Restaurants in Maryland (2023 Update)

The mid-Atlantic state of Maryland is home to an excess of six million people and a preferred tourist haven for both locals and international visitors. It boasts extensive coastlines that stock restaurants and numerous eateries serving international and local cuisines. Visiting a Maryland restaurant will check all the boxes for a perfect getaway itinerary.

You are in new waters if you have never set yourself to explore a coastal destination before apart from your local beach. Here, fun is much more than sunbathing on the sandy shores. Can you imagine having a Maryland Blue crab soup with a view of the sea from your hotel’s porch or balcony? Stop imagining, and book a hike to the coast of Maryland!

Maryland has a rich history of seafood and cultural influence on the rest of America; the national anthem came from Baltimore, Maryland. As the chronicles will have it, the state has the iconic blue crab, delicious to taste and soft on the tongue. Here are the must-visit restaurants next time you are in Maryland and need of some exquisite palates.

Top 7 restaurants in Maryland

1. Charleston Restaurant

Charleston Restaurant
Coastal Wine Trail Credit: @charlestonrestaurant
  • Location: Baltimore – 1000 Lancaster St, Baltimore, MD 21202, United States
  • Opening Hours: Monday to Thursday: 5.30 pm-9.00 pm, Friday and Saturday: 5 pm-9.30 pm, Sunday: 5 pm-8.30 pm
  • Rating: 4.7 stars
  • Pricing: $$$
  • Cuisine: American, Wine

Celebrity chef Cindy Wolf and restaurateur Tony Foreman collaborate on this establishment, featuring the latest cuisines and furnishings. Charleston has an incredible assortment of dishes and wines to choose from in its fine-dining environment.

Chef Cindy is a nine-time finalist in the James Beard Foundation Award for Best Chef in the Mid Atlantic region. She plates her best works in gourmet food selections from international and local recipes. Her style leans on the low cooking famous in South Carolina and French touches to produce a unique taste that is Charleston’s menu.

The restaurant is on the Harbor East waterfront, a perfect spot for a date night with the quiet environment that the restaurant has. You can hold your meetings in VIP private rooms: The Palm and the Wine Library. The restaurant can hold up to 90 patrons with the two extra dining rooms, large enough to make your event a success, no matter the size. Call them ahead to plan how they can accommodate you.

Why should you dine here?

  • Wheelchair accessible, Valet parking
  • Wine and beer service, full bar
  • Private dining
  • Special food options: gluten-free, vegan options, and vegetarian-friendly

Insider’s Tip: Ask your host to pair your wine by the glass with each course, perfect for any wine lover. They will gladly have you sampling some of his best finds in the cellar.

2. Vin 909 Winecafe

Vin 909 Winecafe
Coastal Wine Trail Credit: @vin909winecafe
  • Location: Annapolis – 909 Bay Ridge Ave, Annapolis, MD 21403
  • Opening Hours: Wednesday and Thursday: 12 noon-9 pm, Friday and Saturday: 12 noon-10 pm, Tuesday and Sunday: 5 pm-9 am
  • Rating: 4.8 stars
  • Pricing: $$
  • Cuisine: American, Wine

Executive chef Justin Moore goes out of his way to get the freshest organic ingredients available to prepare the best of local and international cuisines. Locally sourced foods are prepared with a lot of care to preserve the freshness and natural taste of the food. The menu is extensive to have every patron calling in additions from their host.

Vin 909 Winecafe is friendly with costs, with a seasonal menu to emphasize the fresh farm-to-plate recipes. Next time you are in Annapolis-Maryland, make a stop at this renowned eatery for mouthwatering dishes. Outside seating is available facing the natural face and trees backdrop.

Why should you dine here?

  • Outdoor seating
  • Free off-street parking, Street parking
  • Serves lunch, dinner, and late-night
  • Table service, Wine and beer service
  • Special food options: gluten-free, vegan options, and vegetarian-friendly

Insider’s Tip: Vin 909 serves walk-in guests only-no reservations. You can order takeout by calling ahead and speaking to a live customer care rep to get your order going. They don’t partner with delivery couriers like Doordash or UberEats, unfortunately.

3. Dutch’s Daughter Restaurant

Dutch’s Daughter Restaurant
Coastal Wine Trail Credit: @DutchsDaughterRestaurant
  • Location: Frederick – 581 Himes Ave, Frederick, MD 21703
  • Opening Hours: Monday to Thursday: 11.30 am-9.00 pm, Friday and Saturday: 11.30 pm-10 pm, Sunday: 10 am-9 pm
  • Rating: 4.7 stars
  • Pricing: $$$
  • Cuisine: Seafood, American, Soups

Dutch’s Daughter restaurant commemorates the owner’s father Fred ‘Dutch’ Onderdonk. The restaurant is a five-time winner of the Fredrick Magazine Best of Fredrick and The Best of the Best Awards in Maryland. The restaurant started at the local VFW in 1984 before shifting to its current location in Fredrick.

The restaurant menu features local American recipes infused with the deep seafood culture of Maryland. Tasting the crab soup at Dutch’s will make you a frequent dinner uptaker at the restaurant. The multiple main dining halls are examples of how banquet halls should be. The dining rooms’ naming is in memory of the owner’s family and friends: Dutch, Evelyn, Sony, Willard, and the Parlor.

Drinks are trickling in fresh from the tap and wine by the bottle at the Dutch Dungeon. Three rooms here will feature one of the best settings for you to enjoy a drink: the Main Bar, Cigar Room, and the Patio Dining area.

Why should you dine here?

  • Street parking
  • Reservations available
  • Buffet food service
  • Wine and beer service, Full bar
  • Outdoor seating, Highchairs available, TV available
  • Special food options: gluten-free, vegan options, and vegetarian-friendly

Insider’s Tip: Banquet halls are a rare phenomenon these days. You can order banquet seating for you and your party of 20-300 in either of their five dining rooms.

4. The Trolley Stop

The Trolley Stop
Coastal Wine Trail Credit: @arobertn
  • Location: Ellicott City – 6 Oella Ave, Ellicott City, MD 21043
  • Opening Hours: Tuesday to Thursday: 8 am-9.00 pm, Friday and Saturday: 8 am-10 pm, Sunday: 8 am-9 pm
  • Pricing: $$
  • Cuisine: American, Bar

The Trolley is an American restaurant serving the traditional flavors of a local kitchen. The building has a rich history running as a tavern, boarding house, and restaurant over the years since its erection in 1833. The facade features the aging and the beaten rusty look of the old Ellicott City. Sandwiches and burgers are something to feast on here, as they come freshly from the kitchen.

The restaurant serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner to its clientele, with a dining space that can host up to seventy people. You can book the restaurant for events and parties on the second floor. You will even get a personal executive chef and a chance to customize your menu to fit your taste.

You can get offers and daily specials on Trolley Stop’s Facebook page and updates on what’s new at the location. On your next visit, have a historic moment at the restaurant, and don’t forget to take a picture against the Italian-style rustic facade for your Insta stories.

Why should you dine here?

  • Street parking
  • Offers takeout
  • Wine and beer service
  • Highchairs available, Outdoor seating
  • TV available
  • Special food options: gluten-free, vegan options, and vegetarian-friendly

Insider’s Tip: The lunch at Trolley is far much better than dinner, and they give you enough time to order without rushing you about to finish your meal.

5. Swahili Village Bar & Restaurant

Swahili Village Bar & Restaurant

  • Location: Beltsville – 10800 Rhode Island Ave Suite N, Beltsville, MD 20705
  • Opening Hours:
  • Rating: 4.4 stars
  • Pricing: $$
  • Cuisine: African, Fusion

Swahili Villages stocks the best in African meals, especially cuisines from East Africa like chapati and pilau. If you are looking for a different taste and exposure to differing cultures, visit this restaurant in Beltsville.

The Kenyan cuisine boosts a lot of Swahili vibe, from the decor right to the food itself. Starting in 2014, the restaurant has a massive following on social media for its polite staff and impeccable service to patrons.

You are never closer to a safari in Africa than here back home with the delicious plated foods you read about in books. The food has a fusion of spicy American-style foods you can enjoy. Maybe you want the good old burger and beer? The bar and restaurant got you covered with full burgers served with tapped beers at the bar section of the restaurant.

Why should you dine here?

  • Reservations available, Table service
  • Wine and beer service
  • Highchairs available, Outdoor seating, TV available
  • Special food options: gluten-free, vegan options, and vegetarian-friendly

Insider’s Tip: Wait time at the joint might be a little over the top, especially for dinner service. You’d want to arrive early or call ahead to check the wait time and plan accordingly.

6. MoCo’s Founding Farmers

MoCo’s Founding Farmers
Coastal Wine Trail Credit: @foundingfarmers
  • Location: Potomac – 12505 Park Potomac Ave, Potomac, MD 20854
  • Opening Hours: Monday: 8 am-9 pm, Tuesday to Thursday: 8 am-10 pm, Friday: 8 am-11 pm, Saturday: 8.30 am-11 pm, Sunday: 8.30 am-9 pm
  • Rating: 4.3 stars
  • Pricing:$$
  • Cuisine: American, Bar

MoCo’s Founding Farmers is a farmers’ cooperative restaurant. It has restaurants in several locations across America, including in Potomac. The restaurant service is stellar, with fresh ingredients sourced from American family farms. It’s a full-service restaurant with breakfast, lunch, dinner, and brunch on weekends.

They make all their bread and pasta in-house to preserve the rich taste found in home-baked pastries. There is a distillery in the restaurant, too, for their iconic beers and signature Founding spirits.

MoCo’s Founding Farmers is a 3-star certified Green Restaurant and multiple winners of Bethesda’s Leading By Example Green Business Award. It also prides itself in the award of the coveted Maryland Green Registry’s Leadership Award for its exemplary work with recycling and reclaiming. The art in the restaurant is original reclaimed art and decor with hand-crafted finishings.

The menu features extensive reaches of American food culture. You will find burgers, fries, and fried chicken for a fast food choice with a house soda. If you’re on an empty stomach and need something more concrete, 3-course lunch or dinner will suffice. Don’t forget the happy hour on Monday through Friday from 3.30 am until 6 pm at the bar for discounted craft beers and cocktails.

Why should you dine here?

  • Parking available, Pet friendly
  • Free off-street parking, Free WIFI
  • Outdoor seating, High chairs
  • Wine and beer service, Private dining
  • Accepts reservations
  • Special food options: gluten-free, vegan options, and vegetarian-friendly

Insider’s Tip: The mezzanine floor can hold up to 75 people in a serene and intimate environment fit for parties and private events. You also get free parking at the garage for two hours, after which charges are applicable.

7. Timbuktu Restaurant

Timbuktu Restaurant
Coastal Wine Trail Credit: @jacksonakeith
  • Location: Hanover – 1726 Dorsey Rd, Hanover, MD 21076
  • Opening Hours: Sunday to Saturday: 11 am – 10.30 pm
  • Rating: 4 stars
  • Pricing: $$
  • Cuisine: American, Seafood, Bar

Timbuktu is a family-owned restaurant serving seafood fusions in the Baltimore area. You can bank on them to prepare sweet and sour sauces for your crab meat or a crispy brown fried chicken-American style.

The 2018 Diner’s Choice Award winner by Open Table is a detailed station to get your food and drink in a comfortable dining space away from the crowds. They have private rooms and banquet halls to facilitate huge and private events.

Timbuktu accepts reservations online for dine-in options. If you have a large party (50+) give them a call to plan how best their private dining rooms can accommodate you. They also cater for events, like weddings, receptions, anniversaries, birthdays, etc. Make a reservation for your celebration, and they will tailor a custom offer for your special day.

Why should you dine here?

  • Parking available, Takeout
  • High chairs, Outdoor seating, TVs available
  • Wine and beer service, Full bar
  • Accepts reservations
  • Special food options: gluten-free, vegan options, and vegetarian-friendly

Insider’s Tip: You can order the signature Maryland Timbuktu Crab Cake and get it shipped to you directly.

Related Read: The 10 Best Wineries in Maryland to Visit


Maryland is a food center state known for the blue crab. Visiting the coastal state will leave you in awe and lost in the scenic views and the exquisite taste in the restaurants here. You cannot lack something to match your taste, from fine dining to casual eateries. It offers the perfect getaway in a classical style that breezes freshness and delicious food.

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