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The Hard Rock Cafe redefined and refined

The Hard Rock Cafe - new food, drink and venue redesigns - Baltimore. Air America: 3 margaritas, chips and salsa
The Hard Rock Cafe - new food, drink and venue redesigns - Baltimore. Air America: 3 margaritas, chips and salsa
photographs courtesy of Hard Rock Cafe

In all honesty, I had never been slightly interested in getting drinks or eating at the Hard Rock Cafe. The Hard Rock Cafe to me was a touristy venue that lacked anything that would be of interest to me whether in New York, London, Dubai or here in Baltimore at the Inner Harbor. Let’s face facts, I’m a food snob. Well food snobs can change their minds and I did.

The Hard Rock Cafe - Baltimore, MD
photographs courtesy of Hard Rock Cafe

After 14 months of redevelopment of the food and beverage offerings, the Hard Rock Cafe launched their new menu. This was no overnight decision, surveys of staff and clientele, new “from scratch” and “fresh” branding arrived and the results - 30 new items and the modifications of 28 existing menu items.

Considered part of the local media, I was invited into the recently redesigned Hard Rock Cafe to check out not only the food/beverage changes but the aesthetic changes to the Baltimore location and the outdoor pier seating.

In the lyrics of the world famous musician that was the inspiration for all the music memorabilia at the Hard Rock Cafes, Eric Clapton, it was a Wonderful Night. The Hard Rock organization realized they were at a Crossroads to update their food and beverage program and they did.

What stood out to me? Let me start with the libations:

  • The Red Berry Press: Fresh strawberries, raspberries, and lemons in a French press combined with Svedka Clementine vodka, made-from-scratch lemonade and lemon-lime soda. This is so in my wheelhouse of favorite flavor preferences – I could see me on the patio, overlooking the harbor indulging in people watching and the refreshing drink.
  • Air Mexico: Choose three flavors of Margaritas (watermelon, mango, cucumber, blue Curacao, pomegranate or wildberry) served with chips and house made salsa.
  • Other new offerings Salted Caramel Cafe, a Tai Maria, Baileys Irish Cream, Monin Salted Caramel Syrup, with half and half and fresh hot coffee or the Twist & Shout, a Guinness draught beer, Bacardi OakHeart spice rum, crème de cacao, chocolate and salted caramel syrups with Ben & Jerry’s vanilla ice cream topped with signature Applewood smoke crisp bacon.

As for the dining menu, what impressed me was the Hard Rock Cafe’s blending of Angus beef and brisket to form their burger patties for their burger offerings. The brining of the chicken for the BBQ Chicken and Ribs Combo and their 14 hour smoked brisket for the Brisket Sandwich, the Cowboy Ribeye is 28 day aged and the Grilled Salmon is Norwegian wrapped in cedar showed their commitment putting the food to the forefront.

Also new is the Grilled Vegetable Sandwich, marinated and grilled portobello mushrooms, zucchini, yellow squash, roasted red peppers and grilled asparagus topped with Monterey Jack cheese and balsamic glaze on grilled sourdough with tarragon mayonnaise.

Check out the slideshow for a fresh picture of food, drink and venue revamp of the Hard Rock Cafe.

Hard Rock Cafe Baltimore
601 E. Pratt Street
Baltimore, MD 21202

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