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Eats and Drinks

Best Tourist-Friendly Bar

Harbor Way Inn

737 W Pratt St.

Posted 9/21/2005

In bar jargon, the designation “tourist-friendly” usually means sanitized, overpriced and decorated with desperate identifiers (crabs, Irish flags, “Hon” stickers) of cultural authenticity. We prefer to think of a tourist-friendly bar as one that will gladly entertain the out-of-town trade without price gouging or condescension. If you’ve got adventurous visitors coming up—or are just down for a little ethno-tourism yourself—you’re unlikely to find a friendlier reception then the one at the Harbor Way Inn. Just blocks from Camden Yards in Ridgley’s Delight, this ancient dive is bigger than it looks from the outside and more welcoming than just about any place in town. Pull yourself up to the Formica counter, order a can of something cold, and ask Spooky (perhaps the city’s most charmingly garrulous barmaid) about the horse skull resting atop the liquor shelf. Once she gets started, you and your guests will be treated to some seriously entertaining Baltimore stories (get her to tell you about the time her mother tried to shoot her father behind the bar), and a personal introduction to Spooky’s pet bearded dragon, who likes to hang out on her shoulder.

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Other Awards for Best Tourist-Friendly Bar:

The Wharf Rat, 9/17/2008

McCormick and Schmick's, 9/20/2006

James Joyce Irish Pub, 9/22/2004

All Awards for Harbor Way Inn:

Best Bar Pool Table, 9/16/2009

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