Locally Grown Chef Heflin Rises to Top Toque in Baldwin’s Station Kitchen

Dustin Heflin

Dustin Heflin

Baldwin’s Station in Sykesville (voted Maryland’s Favorite Restaurant 2012 by the Restaurant Association of Maryland), has named Dustin Heflin as executive chef. Chef Heflin has created a fresh summer menu using organic local meats, vegetables and produce and puts his own spin on dishes such as: Maryland Crab Cakes with Fried Green Tomatoes and a Creamy Corn and Old Bay Puree; Tuna Tartare with Olives, Capers, Basil and Olive Oil and Shrimp Wrapped in Bacon with Grits. Hefln will also offer specials including fish entrees that you don’t see everywhere – like parrotfish and dogfish. Congrats chef!

Robbin Haas, owner of Birroteca, announced the hiring of Davide Rossi as chef. Davide – a graduate of C.A.P.A.C. Institute in Milan, Italy has worked at some of the top establishments across Italy, the Caribbean and the United States. Most recently he was the chef/owner of one of my all time fave spots–Pazza Luna in Baltimore. He now brings his authentic Italian culinary expertise to Birroteca. I love me some Davide!

The Royal Sonesta Harbor Court Baltimore’s Executive Chef Josean Rosado and his team have created a summer menu with the theme of “International Comfort Food with a Baltimore Twist.” Menu items include rockfish, crab cakes and chicken sliders, a grilled vegetable stack and wings prepared with honey from their own third floor apiary.

The Americana restaurant and bar in Canton has hosted over 1,500 U.S. military veterans for the past two years and was known as THE place to go if you served your country. After much deliberation the owner, Alex van Breukelen has decided to shut the doors to the business and re-enter the United States Marine Corps. Thanks for (all of) your service Alex!

On July 11, the Maryland Wineries Association presents their inaugural local hard cider and mead event, locapour drinklocal – at the Baltimore County Center for Maryland Agriculture & Farm Park at 1114 Shawan Rd. in Hunt Valley. Maryland cider and mead producers include Great Shoals Winery, Linganore Winecellars, Millstone Cellars, Distillery Lane Ciderworks and Orchid Cellar Winery. Local food vendors will be serving crab cakes, roasted chicken, BBQ, and local ice cream from Prigel Family Creamery. The event also offers live music, crafts and—for the kids—Farmer Stan will be on hand providing tours of the chicken coop, making kettle corn, and offering pony rides.

OPEN FOR BIZ: Marketing whiz Laura Alima and her husband David are opening (July 17) The Charmery in Hampden, offering hand-crafted ice cream. Supporting local farms and producers, their menu includes ever changing sundaes, ice cream flavors that match the season, and sodas and shakes from scratch. And – there’s a keg of Dominion Root Beer for floats! In the cooler months, The Charmery will offer hot chocolates with hand-crafted flavored marshmallows and whipped cream. Laura and David Alima have lots ‘o street cred. Laura graduated with a degree in Hotel and Restaurant Management from Cornell University and currently works as marketing director for Jerry Edward’s Chef’s Expressions. David has a cool education from Penn State’s ice cream short course, The Frozen Dessert Institute in St. Louis, and most recently an intensive on-the-job training at The Parlour in Durham. Am I the only one that didn’t know you could major in ice cream? The Charmery offers distinctly Baltimore flavors such as a Zeke’s Coffee ice cream, a lemon stick sorbet and … wait for it … Old Bay Caramel. Say it with me people—YUM!

From French pastries to lavender lattes, from fresh take-out salads to sweet potato chips and all-natural beef jerky, CHOUX, the café at Ma Petite Shoe looks and feels like a hip European coffee shop in the heart of Hampden (830 West 36th Street). The first floor of the café will include a market wall featuring savories as well as French preserves and honey. I haven’t eaten there yet—but—everything Susannah does is done with an eye for detail and serious panache.

CONGRATS: Reigning Champions in Pink! Major congrats to the team at Iron Bridge Wine Company for once again, raising the most money for the Blossoms of Hope Pink Plates challenge – they raised $10,700. Iron Bridge partner Steve Wecker said, “The challenge, which three years ago raised $6,000 total, topped $30,000 this year – making it the biggest fundraiser in the history of Blossoms of Hope which benefits The Claudia Mayer Cancer Resource  Center in Howard County. Having just celebrated our 10th full year of business, giving a nice check to a worthy charity seemed like a great way to celebrate. The main fundraiser was a seven-course dinner where we poured $11,000 worth of wine for 30 People at $300 per person. Fifteen wines, many of which were from collectors cellars, made for a once in a lifetime event.” Outstanding!



About the Author

RANDI ROM is a Baltimore special events planner, marketing and public relations maven, freelance writer and head of R.J. Rom & Associates. Have a hot scoop? Contact Randi via e-mail at or by phone at 443-691-9671.

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