Miss Shirley’s Cafe – MD
Miss Shirley’s touts itself as a soul food joint but don’t expect to find the usual greasy fare that you might find elsewhere. Even if the name of the dish sounds familiar to you, expect to be delightfully surprised by the fresh, almost tongue-in-cheek twist Miss Shirley’s puts on every item on the menu. Sweet potato fries? Yup, they’re on the menu but they come with a sublime mango ketchup that might very well have you licking your fingers. Craving a candy bar for breakfast (and, really, who doesn’t)? Try the Joyous Almond Pancakes (a play on an Almond Joy candy bar); if that doesn’t satiate your candy craving, I don’t know what will.
Admittedly, I’ve had just about everything on the breakfast menu which is a testament to how many times I frequent the place. My favorites are the cornmeal-crusted fried green tomatoes, pumpkin cheesecake French toast, and crab omelette. All perfectly prepared. All divine. Let’s not forget about lunch because Miss Shirley’s does a fine job of that, too. The Chesapeake Club, a monstrous, traditional club sandwich packed with a crabcake and shrimp salad is “WTF good”. Yes, that was crude but it’s the only way I can describe this delicacy. Deal with it.
The Cold Spring Lane location (one of two Baltimore locations) has upstairs dining and, trust me, on any given day the place is packed. However, the staff is really good about turning over tables in a timely manner without rushing you. Even if you have to wait a few minutes for a table, it’s well worth it.