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The Windup Space

Address:10-12 W. North Ave.
Baltimore, MD 21201

More on The Windup Space.

By Michael Byrne | Posted 6/11/2008

Baltimore's got a lot of there's no way there's a bar here bars, and, of them, there's a subcategory: hidden in plain sight bars. Enter the Wind-Up Space. Maybe you've noticed the giant effing burned-out building at the corner or North Avenue and Charles Street, and maybe you've noticed the giant concrete shell of a building that houses Family Dollar on the adjacent corner at North and Maryland avenues. Making the ballsiest stab into Station North development since Joe Squared, the Windup Space occupies the slight building sandwiched in between the two. Right now, it's only open Thursday through Saturday, from 4 p.m. until 1 a.m., and the rest of the time it's guarded by metal roll-down doors and marked by thin white block letters that you'd expect to be advertising a check cashing joint, not a casual-hip drinking/art/music/film/performance space. The bar is large and comfortable: solid maroon and gray walls frame assorted local artwork and give the space an unhurried vibe, as did a DJ spinning relaxed electronic music at a volume just about perfect to compete with the North Avenue traffic. Our drinks were reasonable: $3 for a rum and coke and $4 for a Pilsner Urquell, including a short glass of wasabi peas to munch on. Nice touch. Moreover, on a recent night we saw more foot traffic on Charles Street above Lafayette Avenue than we've seen in a long time. With the Wind-Up Space here to bridge the Club Charles/Metro Gallery/Depot and Joe Squared/Load of Fun poles, Station North is that much closer to reaching its cultural/drinking district aspirations.

E-mail Michael Byrne

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