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Best Restaurant Makeover, Essential

Joe Squared

133 W. North Ave., (410) 545-0444,

Posted 9/19/2007

When it opened, customers had to pretend that its ugliness was cool. Taking over from the last in a succession of unwholesome dive bars, Joe Squared did its best to clean things up, but the central joke--hey, this is a dump!--can only be funny for so long. Now it's nice. Not adorable or anything but finished-looking, intentional, and much brighter and better organized. It's much clearer that Joe Squared is a bona fide restaurant and not just a bar that incidentally has a kitchen. Fortunately for its founding patrons, the changes haven't detracted from the laid-back vibe.

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All Awards for Joe Squared:

Best Pizza, 9/17/2008

Best Delivery, 9/20/2006

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