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“Belittled and embarassed by owner”
Review of Alchemy Restaurant - Baltimore - CLOSED

Alchemy Restaurant - Baltimore
Certificate of Excellence
Price range: $30 - $30
Cuisines: American, Contemporary
More restaurant details
Restaurant details
Good for: Romantic
Dining options: Dinner, Lunch, Brunch, Full Bar, Reservations, Seating, Serves Alcohol, Waitstaff
Dining style: Casual Elegant
Cross street: Roland Avenue
Baltimore, Maryland
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“Belittled and embarassed by owner”
Reviewed March 21, 2013

I visited this restaurant on a Sunday afternoon at 4 pm. My husband and I were treated very poorly by the owner of this restaurant after a dispute over a coupon that we wanted to use- we had made a mistake and not called ahead as stated on the coupon, as a result we were not allowed to use it. We asked to talk to the manager and the owner came to talk to us. He pointed out that we had only ordered one entree each and that clearly people like us were not going to come back and spend lots of money so he had no interest in pleasing us. My problem is not that he didn't let us use the coupon, it is with how we were spoken to. He was very arrogant and actually told us that 'this is a high end restaurant' implying that people like us (a young family- we had our infant son with us) were not welcome there. I was very upset and have never in my life been treated like that by anyone. The restaurant is nice but I wouldn't say particularly 'high end'. The owner is very pretentious and a particularly unpleasant person to deal with. He belittled and embarrassed me and my family.

  • Visited March 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
2 Thank JennaRM
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

121 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
    69
    31
    13
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Rating summary
    Food
    Service
    Value
    Atmosphere
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Baltimore, MD
Level Contributor
340 reviews
257 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 112 helpful votes
“Pricey, Enjoyable Dinner”
Reviewed March 17, 2013

We started with a cocktail, which centered upon Grey Goose's pear flavored vodka. Kudos to Alchemy for having this vodka. I have asked for it in countless bars in several states (including in Manhattan), and none have had it. I would have liked the martini glass that the cocktail came in to be slightly more full for the ten dollar charge, but it was good. The complimentary (two) popovers were also good.

My wife and I asked for three savory items to share: Crab bisque, a pear salad, and the lamb chops. The bisque was great and seemed to be a good value. The salad was very nice, but not amazing in portion or taste. Perhaps the pears just didn't seem as "roasted" as I thought they would be (and not super ripe), the pecans not as "spiced" as I thought they would be, and the dressing not a generous as I would have liked. The lamb chops were good, cooked as requested, but didn't taste of much marinade and were not terribly filling for thirty one dollars. The side of vegetables that came with the chops was skimpy.

For dessert, we shared the crème brulee, which came in a generous portion and tasted good.

Overall, everything was very nice. The food had good taste and presentation, and the service was friendly and prompt. However, the meal was not cheap for two people sharing three courses. Although we understood that a plate-splitting charge was written on the menu, the extra seven dollar charge did not help things. Management handled some questions that we had about the bill very patiently.

We would return here for a special occasion. There is a clear desire to provide customers with a fine dining experience.

  • Visited March 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank westernfb
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Timonium, Maryland
Level Contributor
64 reviews
49 restaurant reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 20 helpful votes
“Still expensive, even with the Groupon....”
Reviewed March 15, 2013

Alchemy was on my "To Dine" list for quite sometime, I now have been twice. Once for lunch, then for dinner. Lunch was, by far, the better experience. Fairly reasonable on the wallet and quite good. Dinner is pricey along with wine prices and drinks, specialty or not, even when applying a groupon purchase. On a higher note, the pre dinner pop-over is a perfect start. The mussels are delicious, swimming in the most heavenly broth, so make sure you ask for extra bread. A great starter to share is the crab cassole, loaded with lump crab and very rich in texture. This is is a good starter to share. The red snapper was cooked perfectly , however, the accompaniments (veggies) were so so. The tomatoes were undercooked and cold and appeared to be hot house tomatoes, cut in large wedges. The roasted vegetable were OK, mostly root and I only received two asparagus stems, no tops...odd, right? The beef shanks were glorious with flavor. I believe this was a special. The flour-less chocolate cake was "delish" however, the strawberries were not ripe. I have bought more suitable strawberries at the Shoprite this week! As you can see, some of the food was wonderful and some not. Perhaps an off night for food based on the many good reviews. Please get rid of those lousy tomatoes...

  • Visited March 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank DTraveler11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“Best Crab Bisque Ever”
Reviewed March 12, 2013

We were 2 couples visiting D.C. for a week and we decided to spend a day in Baltimore. Our lunch at Alchemy Restaurant would be the only reason we found to make a return trip to the city. We had our hearts set on crab cakes and there were many places on the waterfront that offered them. We found a local review of this restaurant and seeing the prices were closer to our budget we hopped in the van and headed north a few miles.
If I knew then what I know now, we may have changed our plans so we could have come to this restaurant 4 or 5 times so we could try everything.
We had a 'special' short rib grilled cheese sandwich. This was our least favorite dish.It was only very good. The first half was eaten as a sandwich which was good, but the 2nd half we separated the short rib meat from the grilled cheese. Better.
The Thai stuffed Portobello sounded like a mess but it all worked together and was delicious.
Next was Colossal Lump Crab Cake was on toasted brioche, with colossal lump crab, petite greens, vine ripe tomato, harvest grain mustard crème. This was probably the best crab cake any of us have ever had. The baseball size cake was so fresh. The colossal on the menu was no joke. It was almost like the crab was holding the small bits of breadcrumbs and seasonings together. The brioche it was served on to create a sandwich was wonderful as well. One of the couples ate this as a sandwich the other couple ate the bread with the mustard sauce as a side dish. Great either way. All of the sandwiches came with homemade potato chips as well. That usually means very thick and very crunchy (overcooked). These were the lightest crispiest 'homemade' chips we've had. Also good with the mustard creme.
But the true star of our lunch was the Crab Bisque. This was truly one of the best things I have ever eaten. It was creamy and light with many large chunks of very fresh, very sweet Crab meat. It was love at first spoonful. The flavor was surprising in it's complexity. I think it may have ruined me to any seafood bisque in my future because it was so much better than ANY bisque that I have had in the past.
We were there on the late end of lunch on a weekday so we can't be sure how busy the place usually is but if the food is always at this level you may want to make reservations far in advance.

  • Visited March 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank viddy130
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Maryland
2 reviews
common_n_restaurant_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Awful”
Reviewed March 7, 2013

How to begin. First the wine menu. Confusing and pretentious. As for the confusing part, let's take the list of several Pinot Noirs. First comes a $40 pinot, then a $32 pinot, then another $40 pinot. Logic? And the pretention. On the list of mostly $30 to $70 bottles, there is a bottle for $375 and another for $750. Huh? And the pretentiousness continued with the waiter pouring our wine with a white napkin over the side of the glass,to,he said, "prevent spilling." Really Classy.
Then the complimentary popovers. Served a few minutes before the apptizers rather than earlier with the drinks.
I'll give one example of the foot. The ahi tuna was fine. But with it came several slices of uncooke tomato? Uncooked tomato in the winter? This no heriloom tomato but the usual cardboard stuff that is available in the winer here. My companions agreed that their food was pedestrian if that.
This was not a good experience.

  • Visited March 2013
    • Value
    • Atmosphere
    • Service
    • Food
Helpful?
1 Thank abmaphd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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